Militarily Speaking

Militarily Speaking

Ep. 23 Pat Tillman Foundation with Dan Futrell

February 15, 2023

Welcome to the "Militarily Speaking" podcast with Tom McLean and Jodi Vickery.

In this episode of “Militarily Speaking,” Tom, Jodi, and guest Dan Futrell, CEO of the Pat Tillman Foundation, discuss the story of how they got started, the impact the foundation and their scholars have had, and share a number of ways to get involved. 

“Militarily Speaking” is a podcast produced by Armed Forces Bank that is dedicated to the military lifestyle and all the things that makes military community who they are. 

Ep. 23 — Pat Tillman Foundation with Dan Futrell

Introducing Dan Futrell and the Pat Tillman Foundation

Jodi introduces Dan Futrell, CEO of the Pat Tillman Foundation, and discusses his background, including his time serving as a Ranger Qualified Infantry Officer in Iraq. 

  • His background also includes being awarded multiple military awards, as well as being a Tillman Scholar himself.
  • Dan then shares Pat Tillman’s story of going from playing in the NFL to then joining the U.S. Army Rangers after 9/11. 
  • Dan notes that while he never met Pat, he can still tell how present he is in the mission of the organization today.

Jodi then asks Dan to share how Pat’s life has translated to the pillars of the foundation, and what they do for the community.

  • Dan discusses how the Pat Tillman Foundation was started, and what it looks like today.
  • He adds that the Pat Tillman Foundation sees their goal as amplifying the impact of their scholars.
  • He continues by describing the connections Pat had with those around him, and how the foundation aims to continue that ripple effect through their efforts today.

Impact of the Pat Tillman Foundation and Tillman Scholars

Tom asks Dan for more details about the impact the foundation has had, and their expansion over the years.

  • Dan says they select 60 Tillman Scholars each year, which is about a 3% selection rate.
  • He notes that the board decided to serve a few individuals more deeply than to serve a larger number of individuals not as much.
  • He continues by discussing their partnerships with universities, and their Tillman Scholars that are currently enrolled.

Jodi asks Dan to talk more about the application process for those who want to become a Tillman Scholar themselves.

  • For veterans or military spouses, go to and apply before the end of February.
  • He then shares the importance of a cover letter by someone that knows you well, and the essay questions that are a part of the application.
  • He also notes that there are more resources on their YouTube channel, or reaching out to Tillman Scholars to ask for their assistance.

Tom asks Dan to discuss some of the partnerships the foundation has.

  • He discusses their partnership with Service to School, and the Warrior Scholar Project.
  • He explains that their Tillman Scholarships are for military veterans and their spouses, noting that there are other organizations that focus on gold star children, and other specialized groups.

Tillman Leadership Institute and Ways to Get Involved

Jodi notes that there are leadership attributes and asks Dan to speak a bit more about those.

  • Dan notes that in January 2023 they launched the Tillman Leadership Institute, which is an investment in leadership development.
  • He continues by describing the six leadership attributes, and the Foundation’s goal of filling the leadership gap that exists today.

Tom then asks Dan to talk about Pints for Pat, which is a longstanding tradition.

  • Dan talks about the history of Pints for Pat, and how it got started. 
  • He then mentions the involvement of other organizations, such as Diageo, in the event, and the special rights they have granted to Pints for Pat.

Jodi asks about Team Tillman and its purpose within the organization, and how others can get involved.

  • Dan explains that Team Tillman is a program that they have for those that want to run a marathon and support their organization in the process.
  • He explains how others can get involved, and get some swag in the process.
  • Dan continues by mentioning Pat’s Run, which is coming up in April, and explains what that event is all about.
  • Tom continues the conversation by discussing the leadership board for the organization, and the amount of leadership, talent, and diversity they have on the board.

Military Minute

Jodi introduces the Military Minute segment of the show, beginning by closing out last episode’s Military Minute.

  • Last episode’s Military Minute: How many families did FISH surprise with Walmart gift cards in December of 2021?
  • Answer: 29
  • This week’s Military Minute question: What is TLI?
  • Watch for Facebook and Instagram posts about this episode.
  • Answer with the correct answer and you plus a charity of your choice can each win $50.

Tom closes the episode by asking listeners to go to and subscribe to the show, as well as leave a rating and comment on your favorite podcast platform such as Apple Podcasts or Spotify

Join us to hear how to better navigate your finances, military life, and the crossroads of the two.