EP 101 : Dan Cerrillo – Navy Seal Charged With Murder Acquitted – Creates Business Success & Becomes The 5 Star Husband And Father He Hadn’t Been.
Dan Cerrillo is the former Chief Administrative Officer for American Addiction Centers (AAC), where he led ~15 teams that improve the lives of veterans struggling with addiction and PTSD. Prior to his promotion to CAO in 2022, Dan served AAC as the Chief of Staff and Chief Security Officer. In those roles, Dan was instrumental in helping AAC obtain Tricare and Veterans Administration approval, which has enabled the organization to treat 4000+ veterans and support them in returning to normal, productive lives.
Dan was an original member of BUD/S Class 194 and served with SEAL Team One as an operator and instructor after graduation. He was later accepted to the Naval Special Warfare Center/ Special Operations instructor staff and received his accreditation as a Master Training Specialist for Advanced Applied Explosives, Diving Supervisor, Diving Maintenance, and Range Operations Safety. A decorated Navy SEAL, Dan has been awarded the Bronze Star, Navy Commendation, and Navy Achievement Medals – all with combat distinguishing devices – as well as the Purple Heart Medal.
Just before Dan was slated to transition into a civilian career in finance, after graduating with a BBA in Finance, he watched the events of 9/11 unfold. Instead of leaving the military, he chose to continue serving his country for the next six years, during which time he deployed with Naval Special Warfare Group One, SEAL Team Seven, and SEAL Team One to both Iraq and Afghanistan. Following a combat injury, Dan medically retired from the SEALs, though he continues to serve in the board, advisory, and ambassador capacities for the Navy SEAL Foundation and the Navy SEAL Fund. In 2020, Dan played an instrumental role in creating the Military Wellness Initiative and Navy SEAL Support Alliance, a $30M joint endeavor of multiple strategic partners.
Dan has held multiple executive protection specialist and team leader roles at Vulcan, Inc. and Bayshore Global Management which later inspired him to launch Spartan 7, Inc., a company that provides security, adventures, and executive coaching to high-net-worth individuals, families, and corporations across the US. Dan is currently the CEO of Spartan 7, Inc., and in just three years, he has taken the business from a $2500 startup to a valuable brand worth over $50M.
Other work experience includes launching three CrossFit Gyms in the greater Seattle area, which were later sold for a substantial profit, and serving as the Chief of Staff and Director of recruiting for Bayshore Global Management’s Global Support Division (GSD.ngo), where he created world’s first privately funded disaster aid and humanitarian response team – built of staff from Harvard Humanitarian, Stanford Medicine, and former Special Operations Operators – that was deployed to 10+ natural disaster sites and 100+ humanitarian aid sites. Dan also co-founded the Memorial Day “Murph” Challenge, which has raised over $50M in donations for the Michael Murphy Family Foundation through over 1M participants to date.
In addition to his BBA, Dan is finishing a Master of Science (MS) degree in Strategic Leadership from the University of Charleston. He is also a Nationally Registered Wilderness Emergency Medical Technician (Level B), a credential that he obtained from the University of Utah.
Dan and his wife Leilani have been married for over 20 years. They reside outside of Nashville and enjoy traveling to visit their three grown children at every opportunity. In his free time, Dan has coached multiple high school, college, and junior football teams to winning conference, state, and national championship titles. Dan is currently the Head Coach of the Sub Varsity Team, and Varsity Assistant Linebacker Coach of the Nationally Ranked (15) and defending Tennessee State Football Champions Lipscomb Academy.
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