From the Trenches to Leadership: David Nordel's Journey of Service and Success


In the latest episode of our podcast, Jump Success is Waiting, we had the privilege of interviewing David Nordel, a remarkable individual with an inspiring story to share. From his military service to his entrepreneurial endeavors, David has navigated a diverse career path while remaining steadfast in his commitment to leadership development and supporting veterans. Join us as we delve into his experiences and insights, exploring the importance of values alignment and creating a supportive social environment for veterans.

Discovering Purpose and Overcoming Adversity:

David's journey started in a small town on a dairy farm in Northern California. Growing up, he learned the values of hard work, resilience, and the consequences of both success and failure. After a year working on the farm, he enlisted in the United States Air Force, where he would serve for an impressive 30 years, six months, and 24 days. Graduating from being a medic to becoming a squad leader for twelve soldiers showcased his natural inclination toward leadership.

Values Alignment and Leadership Development:

Following his retirement from the military, David channeled his passion for leadership development into a company focused on assisting young leaders. His dedication to supporting veterans in their transition back to civilian life is particularly noteworthy. Recognizing the challenges many veterans face, he emphasizes the need for better mental health resources, combatting substance abuse, and finding purpose in work.

Forging a Supportive Social Environment:

David understands that veterans often leave their first jobs within the first year due to a lack of values alignment and feeling respected and valued. That's why he is collaborating with employers to create a supportive social environment for veterans. By addressing values alignment and promoting open communication, he aims to foster a workplace atmosphere that recognizes and appreciates the unique perspectives and experiences of our veterans.

Embracing the "Maximum Fabulous" Attitude:

David's infectious positivity and resilience are evident in his leadership style and daily routines. Starting each day with 160 push-ups, he sets the tone for maximizing his attitude. When asked how he's doing, his response of "I'm maximum fabulous" epitomizes his approach to living life to the fullest. This attitude not only boosts his own well-being but also sets an example for his colleagues and team.

Communicating with Clear Intentions:

One of the critical lessons from David's experiences is the importance of effective communication, especially during challenging situations. Drawing from his graduate degree in disaster management, David emphasizes the significance of providing accurate and clear instructions. He vividly describes how one bad communication necessitates five good ones to recover, likening it to resetting a number from 39 to 38. This reminder reinforces the crucial role played by communication in both personal and professional settings.

Rapid Fire Q&A and Honoring Service:

In our podcast episode, we engage in a rapid-fire session with David, asking him quick-fire questions to gain deeper insights into his personality. It offers a lively and fun segment that showcases his quick thinking and adaptive nature. Furthermore, David's incredible service in a combat zone, leading 235 medics and achieving a 99.5% survival rate, is recognized with the prestigious Bronze Star medal. His dedication to leadership, attitude, and clear communication make him a remarkable role model.


David Nordel's journey from the trenches to leadership exemplifies the power of resilience, values alignment, and supportive environments. His commitment to supporting our veterans and developing young leaders is a testament to his character and the importance of service. We are grateful to David for sharing his story, and we invite you to join us on our podcast, Jump Success is Waiting, as we continue to explore the journeys of those who take the leap into greatness.

Remember, success is waiting; all you have to do is jump.