The Rancho Santa Fe Post

We Need a Leader Like Ben Brown on the School Board

I not only want to endorse Candidate Ben Brown for the School Board, but I also want to emphasize the new kind of leadership we need on the Board that Ben exemplifies.

We were newcomers to Rancho Santa Fe's prestigious neighborhood. I am former military (Navy SEAL combat veteran) and wondered if I’d connect with people in our community. One afternoon, I pulled into R. Roger Rowe elementary to pick up our 10-year-old, when, out of the corner of my eye, I see a tall, strapping young man walking across the parking lot with a beautiful dog and a couple of kids in tow. He definitely stuck out. However, despite his UFC fighter look and warrior demeanor, the infant strapped to him in the baby Bjorn softened that exterior. I said to myself: I’m home. I have to meet this guy.

I soon found that Ben is a war hero (he's too modest to ever claim this himself), a sensational leader, and a man whose purpose is much greater than himself. Few of us can say that about ourselves. Ben grew up in the Ranch, privileged like I did in Dallas. But he felt called to give to a bigger cause.

Ben is a highly decorated Army Ranger Captain. He chose purposeful suffering. He didn’t realize when he signed up for the Army how deep that suffering could go. Combat tours. Sacrifice and death. For whom? To what end? For us. These experiences have created a leadership capability in Ben that very few possess. 

Let me quickly dispel the misconceptions some may have about those of us who enter business or politics from military service. Some question a person’s ability to balance or manage a budget because they only have military experience as an officer in a Tier One unit. My question to them would then be: Who do you think allocates millions of your tax-payer dollars to supply our war fighters with what they need to keep us safe? I know. I was a financial analyst that became a SEAL. We know our numbers. It's mission critical.

Ben Brown has studied business, managed millions in budget allocations for today’s most elite warriors, succeeded in the medical device industry, and is currently leading a successful non-profit, 9 Week Warrior. This experience and acumen make him highly qualified to lead our school district, balance the budget, and fulfill the vision to best serve our most valuable asset – our children, our future leaders.

We live in an amazing little bubble in the Ranch – relatively safe from the world’s harmful realities. Leadership, in part, is about leaning into those hardships and teaching our children how to prepare to be modern-day warriors – giving to causes bigger than themselves. With three children who are currently going, or will go, through the R. Roger Rowe school system, I have a vested interest in ensuring our kids receive the very best. Ben will lead by example, and will work hard to do just that.

Change is good. Change is needed. And only leaders like Ben can lean into dynamic change, align leaders, and fulfill our vision. Period.

We need new dynamic leadership on the School Board. We need a leader like Ben.