Eric Welsh is a retired Colonel in the United States Army, last serving as a Brigade Commander in Kirkuk, Iraq. Retiring after a successful 27-year career, he also served as Special Assistant to the Chief of Staff of the Army at the Pentagon and as Battalion Commander of the 7th Cavalry Regiment in Mosul, Iraq. While in the military, he earned two Bronze Stars, one with Valor, and a Purple Heart.
After his service in the Army, Eric joined Coca-Cola where he was the Senior Director of Global Operations EKOCENTER, helping lead a global operations team creating new business models across 4 Continents and 23 countries. Collaborating with private sector companies, local governments, NGOs, IGOs, and humanitarian entities, Eric and his team successfully developed business practices that delivered purpose driven growth to help millions of people join the emerging middle class.
Born in 1965, Eric’s mother died when he was eight, and by the time he was nine his father had abandoned him, leaving him an orphan. He would find himself rummaging the streets looking for food, and he was sent to live with his grandmother. Realizing she couldn’t care for him, he was enrolled in the Milton-Hershey school, a place that provided a stable life and rigorous academics for disadvantaged youth. Simply put, it changed his life.
Eventually Eric felt his calling to join the military and met with a recruiter for the United States Army. When they realized he didn’t have a birth certificate, they connected the dots and figured out his family tree, something Eric never knew up to that point. Their research led them to discover he was the grandson of Colonel “Pappy” Boyington, the famed World War II fighter pilot, Medal of Honor winner, and Marine Corps legend. Colonel Boyington earned his fame when, in 1944, he was outnumbered by Japanese fighter planes and he was shot down in the Pacific after downing his 28th enemy plane. Boyington “ace of aces” was captured by the Japanese and was a prisoner of war for over a year and a half, released only after the surrender of Japan. His story went on to inspire the series Baa Baa Black Sheep in the 1970’s.
Eric graduated a distinguished military graduate from the ROTC program in 1988, a second lieutenant of Infantry with a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Kent State University, and went to Fort Benning where he was trained in airborne, ranger, and reconnaissance disciplines. From there, his military career took him all over the globe where he was fortunate to serve, lead, and command the finest troops this country could ever produce.
Today, Eric serves as the co-founder of WBMV Consulting where he applies his military expertise and business experience to help companies unlock their growth potential. Additionally, he founded The Almost Home Foundation to assist combat-experienced military veterans and their families with a successful transition from military to civilian life.
Welsh lives in Fulton County and he is the proud father to a daughter and two boys, one recently commissioned in the Army a second lieutenant of Infantry where he will be the 9th generation to serve our country protecting America.