We believe in using the power of story through experiential and research-based wisdom as a catalyst for developing authentic leaders, resilient organizations, and helping build workplaces where military veterans – particularly Wounded Warriors (WW) – can realize their full potential and add maximum value to the organization. Dignity – Grace – Honor
We are a Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB). When you hire Purple Heart Consulting, you are making a positive statement about supporting disabled veterans and SDVOSBs. As a SDVOSB, Purple Heart Consulting qualifies for a number of sole-sourcing hiring options for local, state, and Federal contracts. Please contact us for DUNS number and Department of Veterans Affairs Center for Verification and Evaluation (CVE) information. Thank you!
Combat trauma – the wounds of war – is a defining moment like no other, often serving as the single-most powerful trial in the warrior’s life. We call these moments “crucibles,” and we call those combat wounded survivors who emerge as better, stronger, more resilient and compelling leaders after their injuries “crucible leaders.” Crucible leaders arise from their injuries with a newfound perspective on life and leadership, and are able to use the power of their story and resilience to develop winning, cohesive teams that lead their industry.
The story of Purple Heart Consulting begins in the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan, where Dr. David Andrews served as a special operations medical officer and combat advisor before being badly wounded-in-action on his fourth combat deployment. As for many other WWs, the medical evacuation (medevac) flight for David was one of the longest, loneliest moments in his life – a journey filled with anxiety over the extent of his injuries and, worse, unanswerable questions about how he would provide for his single-income family of six. The medevac flight started a long and difficult road to recovery and self-discovery of life after injury; life with permanent disability that meant he could no longer serve on active duty. Yet, disability does not mean inability, and David – with the help of his wife, children, and amazing friends and supporters – began to rebuild his life: “relearning how to learn” and redeveloping a sense of hope and purpose. Hired as an Intelligence Officer for a national intelligence agency, David began noticing that his perspective on life and leadership had fundamentally altered due to his injuries. There was a new sense of fostering camaraderie and shared purpose; a newfound ability to articulate a shared vision for team success that galvanized the people around him. Make no mistake: this was not others being nice out of sympathy or acknowledgement of David’s sacrifices. This was something different where David’s ability to share his personal narrative of resilience and perseverance through injury imbued others with a sense that they too could overcome personal and professional challenges. David’s newfound leadership ability was so profound, so moving and effective, that within four years of his new career, David was named as the 2015 Secretary of Defense’s Outstanding Civilian Employee with a Disability. Why? How?
The epiphany moment came during David’s Doctorate in Management studies when he began to explore the effects of combat trauma from a leadership development standpoint. Diving into the existing research revealed a large gap of understanding, particularly as the vast majority of scholars studying the issue lacked the lived experience to understand the life-altering nature of combat trauma or to gain the full trust and openness of the WWs they were interviewing. As a combat veteran and Purple Heart recipient, David had both the first-hand experience of combat trauma and the credentials that allowed other WWs to share experiences that would not tell to an outsider. The result was ground-breaking research into the “Crucibles of Leadership for Wounded Warriors” – how combat trauma affects WWs’ perspectives of life and leadership. For the first time, academic research could explain the phenomenon of why and how combat trauma serves as a catalyst for WWs’ leadership development. For the first time, scholars could share with employers the specific leadership competencies that WWs bring to the workplace. Now organizations can glean the research-based best practices that will help them prepare their organizations and staff to emerge from catastrophic events as a stronger, more resilient group.
And so was born Purple Heart Consulting, LLC. Grounded in our motto of “Dignity, Grace, and Honor,” we provide award winning experiential and research-based management solutions to develop organizational resilience and maximize the talent of veterans – particularly Wounded Warriors – in the workplace.
Who We Are
David Andrews, DM, MBA
Founder & President
David’s military career spanned over 21 years of active duty, including the Navy, Marine Corps (as a Navy Corpsman), and Air Force. David deployed to combat four times – including three deployments with joint special operations – before being badly wounded-in-action while serving as a combat advisor in Afghanistan. In 2011, David was hired as an Intelligence Officer by a national intelligence agency, where he served in multiple sensitive positions at the Joint Staff (Pentagon) and Combatant Command levels. Dr. Andrews’ academic work includes serving as an adjunct faculty for a national intelligence agency, teaching organizational leadership and strategy to senior intelligence officers. David has a Doctorate in Management (DM), with his dissertation being a qualitative study on the Crucibles of Leadership for WWs: How combat trauma serves as a transformative event in Wounded Warriors’ leadership development. Dr. Andrews is a frequent guest speaker on organizational resilience and Wounded Warrior issues. David received several post-military awards, including the 2015 Secretary of Defense’s Outstanding Department of Defense Civilian Employee with a Disability Award; the most prestigious award conferred upon disabled employees in the Department of Defense. Dr. Andrews has received personal award coins from the President of the United States, Secretaries of Defense and Veterans Affairs, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (twice), and the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Dr. Andrews and his family were special guests to meet the President of the United States, where the President noted that it was a personal honor for him to meet David and his family.
Very low key and humble about his service to the United States, Dr. Andrews credits his successful recovery to his wife, their four children, and an amazing group of friends and supporters who push him every day to get better and adjust to life with injuries. A tireless advocate for Wounded Warriors, David has met with and briefed senior leaders including two Presidents, several Cabinet-level officials, members of Congress, and senior military officials. A recognized leader among combat wounded veterans, Dr. Andrews was elected as Commander for Colorado’s largest chapter of the Military Order of the Purple Heart (MOPH). David’s military awards and decorations include the Purple Heart Medal and other awards and accolades consistent with combat veterans fortunate enough to return home.