AT&T: Celebrate Our Fallen Heroes: Why Do You Carry The Load?

AT&T's Cody Bandars, a former Navy SEAL, shares why he supports Carry The Load, a nonprofit dedicated to providing active, meaningful ways to honor and celebrate the sacrifices of our fallen heroes.

AT&T is No. 3 on the DiversityInc Top 50 Companies list

(Originally published on AT&T Insider)

During Cody Bandars', a senior product marketing manager at AT&T and former Navy SEAL, tenure in the Navy, several of his peers lost their lives.

His 1-year wedding anniversary on Aug. 6, 2011, was supposed to be a happy day. However, he woke up to the news that a military helicopter had been shot down by the Taliban in Afghanistan. Thirty-one Americans lost their lives, including 17 Navy SEALS. It was the largest loss of life in Naval Special Warfare history during the Afghanistan campaign.

Then a few months later on Oct. 1, 2011, Caleb Nelson, a Navy SEAL from Cody's hometown was killed in Afghanistan. "Caleb's death really hit close to home," Cody said. "He grew up 2 miles away from me. It made it very real."

Carrying The Load

To honor his fallen comrades, Cody supports Carry The Load, a nonprofit dedicated to providing active, meaningful ways to honor and celebrate the sacrifices of our fallen heroes.

"I Carry The Load for all of our brothers and sisters who are still serving, for those who went before us, and for all of them we've lost along the way." Cody said.

Prior to going into the Navy, Cody worked at Trident Response Group (TRG), a global intelligence and advisory group in Dallas. TRG was co-founded by Clint Bruce, a former Navy SEAL, who mentored Cody until he went to boot camp in March 2010.

In 2011 while Cody was serving our country, Clint Bruce and another former Navy SEAL, Stephen Holley, founded Carry the Load.

"An important part of coming home is finding and helping build better versions of you to go and do what you did," said Clint. "I felt like I owed the teams better, smarter, faster and fitter versions of me when I left. Cody was, and is, all of those things. It's exciting to see him bring the intangibles of our special operations careers back to a great organization like AT&T and certainly for Carry the Load."

Life @AT&T

After 2 deployments and 7 years as a Navy SEAL, Cody decided it was time to move on to the next chapter in his life.

He came to AT&T through the Care Coalition Fellowship Program in January 2017. The program is designed to support the U.S. Special Operations Command service members who are in the process of transitioning into civilian life, but are waiting for the completion of their medical separation orders.

"I was lucky enough to find a needle in a haystack in Cody Bandars," said Marcus Owenby, AVP – product marketing management. "Cody happened to be a perfect fit for a role I had been trying to fill. He was bilingual, detail-oriented and had the cultural experience to be comfortable working with our business partners in Latin America."

AT&T and U.S. Air Force Academy Collaborate to Explore Advanced Technologies

Formal 5- Year Agreement Aims to Help U.S. Air Force Keep Pace With, Acquire and Use Commercial Technology.

Originally Published by AT&T.

AT&T* and the U.S. Air Force Academy are working together on networking services and advanced technology capabilities. They entered a 5-year Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) aimed at boosting the Air Force's use of modern technology at a pace more like the commercial sector.

"Networking is a platform for innovation and mission support," said Lt. Col. Michael Chiaramonte, director of Air Force CyberWorx at the Air Force Academy. "With access to AT&T's resources, we plan to advance our academic and research objectives. By leveraging public-private partnerships with AT&T and our other industry partners, we improve our understanding and use of technology and, ultimately, improve the Air Force's mission capabilities."

The collaboration aims to:

  • Offer knowledge and commercial best practices of cybersecurity, Internet of Things, and other AT&T-led innovations for the Air Force Academy faculty. Such innovations include Smart Base solutions, software-defined networking and 5G.
  • Provide hands-on demonstrations for Academy cadets.
  • Ensure AT&T has greater insight into the vision and technology needs of the U.S. Air Force.
  • Explore opportunities beyond academic interests.

"Our work with the U.S. Air Force Academy will be much like an action-oriented academic 'think tank.' We're here to help the Air Force keep pace with commercial innovation and pinpoint their current and future technology needs," said Rocky Thurston, Client Executive VP, AT&T Public Sector.

Part of the Air Force's larger mission

Partnerships fuel the Academy research program. There are 19 centers and 2 institutes, as well as cadets, faculty and industry all working together for the benefit of tomorrow's Air Force. CyberWorx was established in 2016 as a public-private design center focused on cyber capability. It combines Air Force, academic and industry expertise with state of the art technology and innovative thinking to solve operational problems.

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By Jennifer Robertson

Originally Published by AT&T.

Last year, best-selling author and New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman visited AT&T. During a conversation with employees, he emphasized the importance of continuous learning for employees and employers to succeed in the age of acceleration.

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Veterans group calls Trump's tweet "the most inappropriate" Memorial Day remarks from a president.

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