John I. Pray, Brig. Gen., USAF (Ret.) has served as President and CEO of Operation Homefront since 2015. He credits his parents with instilling the importance of service to others and love of country – two core beliefs that have formed the moral compass John has used to guide all the major decisions in his life. John’s father, a career Army officer who served during World War II, survived both the Bataan Death March and three and a half years as a POW, and the Korean War, believed his mother was the one who deserved special credit for all she had to deal with his long absences and the many uncertainties that characterize military life.
Their example was the driving force behind John’s decision to join the United States Air Force. He retired after serving 27 years in a variety of staff and command assignments, to include the Director of the White House Situation Room, to accept the opportunity serve as the Executive Secretary of the National Security Council during the Bush Administration. Once John left the Federal government, he chose to continue serving our military members and their families. First, in a variety of executive capacities at the United Service Organizations (USO) and since May 2015, as the President/CEO with Operation Homefront, another nationally recognized nonprofit. In his current role, he oversees the fulfillment of the organization’s vital mission – to help build strong, stable, and secure military families so they can thrive, not simply struggle to get by, in the communities they have worked so hard to protect. The Operation Homefront family, consisting of 120 staff members, 20 national board members, over 50 regional advisory council members, nearly 4,000 volunteers, scores of corporate and foundation donors and tens of thousands of individual donors, share a common passion to help our military families in their time of need because of all they have done for all of us in our nation’s time of need.
John holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the U.S. Air Force Academy and master’s degrees from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, the School of Advanced Airpower Studies, and the Air War College. He has also completed senior executive programs at the Columbia University Graduate School of Business, Harvard Business School and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.