Our Team

Staff Bios

Alex Krongard

Chief Executive Officer

Alex Krongard grew up outside Baltimore, Maryland and is a 1985 graduate of Princeton University with a degree in English Literature. He served 31 years in the U.S. Navy, the majority of that time in Joint Special Operations, Naval Special Warfare and the SEAL Teams. He was a distinguished graduate of the National War College in 2005. After retiring from the military, he worked as an Investment Banker with DC Advisory in their San Francisco office before coming to The COMMIT Foundation. He is also on boards at several companies and non-profits. Alex’s last active duty assignment was as the Deputy Director for Operations at U.S. Africa Command. He retired from the U.S. Navy in September 2016 as a Rear Admiral Lower Half. Among his assignments prior to that, he was the first Commanding Officer of SEAL Team 7, Commander of Naval Special Warfare Group 1, and Deputy Commander of Joint Task Force Horn of Africa. As the Commanding Officer of SEAL Team 7, he led the team from initial stand-up through to the conclusion of its seven month plus deployment in Iraq in 2003-2004. From January 2012 through December 2013, Alex served as a Counterterrorism Director on the National Security Council Staff focusing on developing policies regarding U.S. hostages held abroad, potential employment of Weapons of Mass Destruction by terrorists, and special operations. Alex currently lives in San Diego, California.

Shannon Kopp

Chief Development Officer

Shannon leads COMMIT's ambitious and successful development effort. She's been in the development space for a number of years supporting political fundraising and non-profits. Her passion for COMMIT stems from being married to a former Ranger and having an adult son in uniform serving in Alaska. Shannon brings a passion for connecting people and organizations for meaningful and strategic impact in our communities for the better. With over 16 years of expertise as a strategic development and fundraising professional: she has offered professional consulting services in nonprofit development, government affairs, philanthropic advisory services focused on strategic organizational development, board cultivation, and capacity building. Her experience also includes work with Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Senator John McCain, the Ware Family Office and various political campaigns. Shannon earned a B.A. from the University of Southern California and a Masters of Science in Organizational Leadership with a specialization in Executive Leadership from Regis University in Denver. She lives in Colorado and South Dakota with her husband and they have five incredible children and three grandchildren.

Margaret Riley

Chief Operating Officer

Margaret joins The COMMIT Foundation bringing with her over 15 years of legal, military and veteran nonprofit experience. Having struggled with her own transition out of the military, Margaret has a personal and professional passion for COMMIT’s mission. Prior to joining The COMMIT Foundation, Margaret worked with PsychArmor Institute as the External Relations Director and Wounded Warrior Project as the Community Partnerships and Investments Director. Additionally, Margaret has worked in higher education at the University Of Southern California, Center of Innovation and Research for Veterans and Military Families (CIR) and Chapman University AMVETS Legal Clinic. Margaret earned her bachelor’s degree from Clemson University and her law degree from California Western School of Law. Upon graduation from law school, Margaret joined the U.S. Army as a direct commission and served as a JAG officer with the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault). Originally from Long Island, NY, Margaret now lives in Jacksonville, FL with her twin sons and dog.

Scott Walgren

Chief Programs Officer

Scott served in the United States Navy and brings a wealth of expertise in program management and development, executive coaching, and team building to the COMMIT Foundation as the Chief Programs Officer. Scott retired from the Navy after 20 years having commanded Helicopter Sea Combat Weapons School Atlantic and flown both the MH-60S and CH-46D during his service. His career included a wide variety of operational and staff assignments, highlighted by a tour at NATO School Oberammergau nestled in the Bavarian Alps. That experience identified a connection to an adventurous, active lifestyle inspiring Scott, his wife and two sons to relocate to Bozeman, MT for post-Navy life. He is proud to continue his service contributing to the purposeful and powerful transition offered through The COMMIT Foundation. Scott is a 1998 graduate of the United States Naval Academy where he earned a BS in History, and later received an MA in National Security Affairs from the Naval Postgraduate School.

Patrick Gale

Product Owner of Digital Programs

Patrick Gale joins The COMMIT Foundation after spending a career as a Product Manager in the Photonics Industry and most recently Co-Founding a multi-sided marketplace for high technology products. He is the son of a Vietnam Veteran and he is excited to have the opportunity to serve the Veteran community. Patrick graduated from Montana State University with a Bachelors of Science in Electrical Engineering where he also met his wife a Civil Engineer. Patrick and his wife love living in Bozeman, Montana where they are raising two young children and enjoy spending their time outdoors camping, mountain biking and skiing.

Reggie Mills

Director of Veteran Services

Reggie is thrilled to join the COMMIT Foundation and brings a plethora of knowledge and experience to assist transitioning veterans. Reggie completed a 23-year Navy career in electronic warfare, cryptology, program management, and leadership. His worldwide military tours culminated with his final assignment as Fleet Electronic Warfare Officer for Commander, Pacific Fleet in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. After retiring, Reggie’s desire to help people coupled with his own post-military hurdles found him in the classroom for nearly three years, assisting veterans with their military transition skills. He knows firsthand from his personal experiences and sharing the stories of his students, that the issues facing transitioning members are all too common. He is a true believer in the power of hope, personal connection, and surrounding yourself with like-minded people. Reggie completed his bachelor’s at Brandman University and holds a Leadership Speaker & Coach certification from The John Maxwell Leadership Team. Originally from central New York, Reggie now calls the beautiful state of Washington home where he lives with his girlfriend and their bull terrier.

Michele Olive

Senior Director of Veteran Services

Michele Olive is pleased to join the COMMIT Foundation staff, bringing with her expertise in clinical counseling and a wealth of experience in both the military and civilian sectors. She has assisted military service members and their families as a board certified Licensed Clinical Social Worker via the DoD and Naval Special Warfare for over 10 years. Michele brings her background in assessment and her knowledge of high performing teams to help others achieve their goals. Her experience providing leadership development consulting in the private sector also compliments her role as the Director of Veteran Services. She shares COMMIT’s passion to connect transitioning veterans with opportunities that match their caliber of talent and vision. Michele and her husband Joel enjoy the sunshine and lots of baseball in Virginia Beach with their three sons and two Labs.

Abby Peterson

Director of Corporate Education

Abby is honored to join The COMMIT Foundation, bringing with her over a decade of experience in recruiting and public relations. She started her career as a Corporate Recruiter in the financial services industry but after five years, decided to pursue her lifelong goal of becoming a Marine. She served eight years in the Marine Corps as a Public Affairs Officer. Her experience has shaped her passion for communication and helping inspire shared visions among diverse audiences. Her roles developing training programs, performing community outreach and serving as an Associate Investigator for major DoD policy reform have given her an appreciation for educating different publics by engaging in multifaceted dialogue around challenging and evolving issues. Abby is currently earning her MPA from Rutgers University, residing in central New Jersey where she and her husband are raising their three children.

Brian Rauch

Director of Information Systems

Prior to joining the COMMIT Foundation, Brian Rauch served from 2009 through 2015 as a Chaplain in the United States Air Force Reserves. His civilian career experience involved working software development for Palm Inc, HP Global, IT Consulting, Check-6 Inc, and PFL. During the 2012 national elections, Brian ran IT and Data Analytics for a US Congressman’s bid for the US Senate. More recently, he is a leading member of Salesforce’s Military Trailhead program where he actively trains and helps veterans learn the Salesforce platform. Brian also runs local Salesforce education and community groups. He attended the University of Montana for his undergrad in Information Systems, and Liberty University for a double Master’s in Military Chaplaincy and Theology. He enjoys small town Montana with his two young daughters.

Tanya Reinhardt

Deputy Director of Programs and Operations

Prior to joining The COMMIT Foundation as the Deputy Director of Programs and Operations, Tanya served more than 20 years as a military officer, working throughout Europe and Asia. She has a myriad of experience in both public and private sectors as a program manager and strategic thinker. Tanya met her husband in the Army and has lived through the challenges of transitioning from the military; Tanya was inspired by the mission of COMMIT and is excited to join the team. Her service extends to the community as well as she is an elected trustee on the Bozeman Public School Board and a Stephen Leader in the United Methodist Church. Tanya earned her MPA from the University of Oklahoma and her bachelors from Montana State University. She lives in Bozeman and has two children in college.

Amy Taft

Senior Director of Education

Amy is joining the COMMIT Foundation and bringing with her over 7 years of experience in Military transition training and 17 years of experience in workforce development training. Amy has a strong background in adult online learning and curriculum development and uses this knowledge to advance the learning environment in a manner that drives people towards success. Amy was a member of the inaugural cohort of the Bush Institute Veteran Stand to Leadership program and has previously worked with the Institute for Veteran and Military Families and the USMC Marine for Life program. Amy is married to a Navy Veteran, has two daughters, and resides in North Carolina. Amy’s passion for learning and connecting people fuels her desire to see all people become the best version of themselves. Amy has a Masters of Education with an emphasis on Curriculum and Learning from Liberty University and a Doctorate of Education from Liberty University.

Meagan Thrift

Senior Director of Veteran Services

Meagan Thrift brings over 20 years of experience in the career counseling field to COMMIT, including work in higher education, private sector, government services and independent contracting. As a Nationally Certified Counselor, she has worked with students, civilians, transitioning military and military spouses in all aspects of career transition. She holds two graduate degrees in counseling with a specialization in career counseling from Florida State University. With more than 17 years as a military spouse to a recently retired special operations officer, Meagan understands the military transition process both personally and professionally. She is a native of Louisiana and now calls Virginia Beach home with her husband and three kids.

Staff Bios

Alex Krongard

Chief Executive Officer

Alex Krongard grew up outside Baltimore, Maryland and is a 1985 graduate of Princeton University with a degree in English Literature. He served 31 years in the U.S. Navy, the majority of that time in Joint Special Operations, Naval Special Warfare and the SEAL Teams. He was a distinguished graduate of the National War College in 2005. After retiring from the military, he worked as an Investment Banker with DC Advisory in their San Francisco office before coming to The COMMIT Foundation. He is also on boards at several companies and non-profits. Alex’s last active duty assignment was as the Deputy Director for Operations at U.S. Africa Command. He retired from the U.S. Navy in September 2016 as a Rear Admiral Lower Half. Among his assignments prior to that, he was the first Commanding Officer of SEAL Team 7, Commander of Naval Special Warfare Group 1, and Deputy Commander of Joint Task Force Horn of Africa. As the Commanding Officer of SEAL Team 7, he led the team from initial stand-up through to the conclusion of its seven month plus deployment in Iraq in 2003-2004. From January 2012 through December 2013, Alex served as a Counterterrorism Director on the National Security Council Staff focusing on developing policies regarding U.S. hostages held abroad, potential employment of Weapons of Mass Destruction by terrorists, and special operations. Alex currently lives in San Diego, California.

Shannon Kopp

Chief Development Officer

Shannon leads COMMIT's ambitious and successful development effort. She's been in the development space for a number of years supporting political fundraising and non-profits. Her passion for COMMIT stems from being married to a former Ranger and having an adult son in uniform serving in Alaska. Shannon brings a passion for connecting people and organizations for meaningful and strategic impact in our communities for the better. With over 16 years of expertise as a strategic development and fundraising professional: she has offered professional consulting services in nonprofit development, government affairs, philanthropic advisory services focused on strategic organizational development, board cultivation, and capacity building. Her experience also includes work with Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Senator John McCain, the Ware Family Office and various political campaigns. Shannon earned a B.A. from the University of Southern California and a Masters of Science in Organizational Leadership with a specialization in Executive Leadership from Regis University in Denver. She lives in Colorado and South Dakota with her husband and they have five incredible children and three grandchildren.

Margaret Riley

Chief Operating Officer

Margaret joins The COMMIT Foundation bringing with her over 15 years of legal, military and veteran nonprofit experience. Having struggled with her own transition out of the military, Margaret has a personal and professional passion for COMMIT’s mission. Prior to joining The COMMIT Foundation, Margaret worked with PsychArmor Institute as the External Relations Director and Wounded Warrior Project as the Community Partnerships and Investments Director. Additionally, Margaret has worked in higher education at the University Of Southern California, Center of Innovation and Research for Veterans and Military Families (CIR) and Chapman University AMVETS Legal Clinic. Margaret earned her bachelor’s degree from Clemson University and her law degree from California Western School of Law. Upon graduation from law school, Margaret joined the U.S. Army as a direct commission and served as a JAG officer with the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault). Originally from Long Island, NY, Margaret now lives in Jacksonville, FL with her twin sons and dog.

Scott Walgren

Chief Programs Officer

Scott served in the United States Navy and brings a wealth of expertise in program management and development, executive coaching, and team building to the COMMIT Foundation as the Chief Programs Officer. Scott retired from the Navy after 20 years having commanded Helicopter Sea Combat Weapons School Atlantic and flown both the MH-60S and CH-46D during his service. His career included a wide variety of operational and staff assignments, highlighted by a tour at NATO School Oberammergau nestled in the Bavarian Alps. That experience identified a connection to an adventurous, active lifestyle inspiring Scott, his wife and two sons to relocate to Bozeman, MT for post-Navy life. He is proud to continue his service contributing to the purposeful and powerful transition offered through The COMMIT Foundation. Scott is a 1998 graduate of the United States Naval Academy where he earned a BS in History, and later received an MA in National Security Affairs from the Naval Postgraduate School.

Patrick Gale

Product Owner of Digital Programs

Patrick Gale joins The COMMIT Foundation after spending a career as a Product Manager in the Photonics Industry and most recently Co-Founding a multi-sided marketplace for high technology products. He is the son of a Vietnam Veteran and he is excited to have the opportunity to serve the Veteran community. Patrick graduated from Montana State University with a Bachelors of Science in Electrical Engineering where he also met his wife a Civil Engineer. Patrick and his wife love living in Bozeman, Montana where they are raising two young children and enjoy spending their time outdoors camping, mountain biking and skiing.

Reggie Mills

Director of Veteran Services

Reggie is thrilled to join the COMMIT Foundation and brings a plethora of knowledge and experience to assist transitioning veterans. Reggie completed a 23-year Navy career in electronic warfare, cryptology, program management, and leadership. His worldwide military tours culminated with his final assignment as Fleet Electronic Warfare Officer for Commander, Pacific Fleet in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. After retiring, Reggie’s desire to help people coupled with his own post-military hurdles found him in the classroom for nearly three years, assisting veterans with their military transition skills. He knows firsthand from his personal experiences and sharing the stories of his students, that the issues facing transitioning members are all too common. He is a true believer in the power of hope, personal connection, and surrounding yourself with like-minded people. Reggie completed his bachelor’s at Brandman University and holds a Leadership Speaker & Coach certification from The John Maxwell Leadership Team. Originally from central New York, Reggie now calls the beautiful state of Washington home where he lives with his girlfriend and their bull terrier.

Michele Olive

Senior Director of Veteran Services

Michele Olive is pleased to join the COMMIT Foundation staff, bringing with her expertise in clinical counseling and a wealth of experience in both the military and civilian sectors. She has assisted military service members and their families as a board certified Licensed Clinical Social Worker via the DoD and Naval Special Warfare for over 10 years. Michele brings her background in assessment and her knowledge of high performing teams to help others achieve their goals. Her experience providing leadership development consulting in the private sector also compliments her role as the Director of Veteran Services. She shares COMMIT’s passion to connect transitioning veterans with opportunities that match their caliber of talent and vision. Michele and her husband Joel enjoy the sunshine and lots of baseball in Virginia Beach with their three sons and two Labs.

Abby Peterson

Director of Corporate Education

Abby is honored to join The COMMIT Foundation, bringing with her over a decade of experience in recruiting and public relations. She started her career as a Corporate Recruiter in the financial services industry but after five years, decided to pursue her lifelong goal of becoming a Marine. She served eight years in the Marine Corps as a Public Affairs Officer. Her experience has shaped her passion for communication and helping inspire shared visions among diverse audiences. Her roles developing training programs, performing community outreach and serving as an Associate Investigator for major DoD policy reform have given her an appreciation for educating different publics by engaging in multifaceted dialogue around challenging and evolving issues. Abby is currently earning her MPA from Rutgers University, residing in central New Jersey where she and her husband are raising their three children.

Brian Rauch

Director of Information Systems

Prior to joining the COMMIT Foundation, Brian Rauch served from 2009 through 2015 as a Chaplain in the United States Air Force Reserves. His civilian career experience involved working software development for Palm Inc, HP Global, IT Consulting, Check-6 Inc, and PFL. During the 2012 national elections, Brian ran IT and Data Analytics for a US Congressman’s bid for the US Senate. More recently, he is a leading member of Salesforce’s Military Trailhead program where he actively trains and helps veterans learn the Salesforce platform. Brian also runs local Salesforce education and community groups. He attended the University of Montana for his undergrad in Information Systems, and Liberty University for a double Master’s in Military Chaplaincy and Theology. He enjoys small town Montana with his two young daughters.

Tanya Reinhardt

Deputy Director of Programs and Operations

Prior to joining The COMMIT Foundation as the Deputy Director of Programs and Operations, Tanya served more than 20 years as a military officer, working throughout Europe and Asia. She has a myriad of experience in both public and private sectors as a program manager and strategic thinker. Tanya met her husband in the Army and has lived through the challenges of transitioning from the military; Tanya was inspired by the mission of COMMIT and is excited to join the team. Her service extends to the community as well as she is an elected trustee on the Bozeman Public School Board and a Stephen Leader in the United Methodist Church. Tanya earned her MPA from the University of Oklahoma and her bachelors from Montana State University. She lives in Bozeman and has two children in college.

Amy Taft

Senior Director of Education

Amy is joining the COMMIT Foundation and bringing with her over 7 years of experience in Military transition training and 17 years of experience in workforce development training. Amy has a strong background in adult online learning and curriculum development and uses this knowledge to advance the learning environment in a manner that drives people towards success. Amy was a member of the inaugural cohort of the Bush Institute Veteran Stand to Leadership program and has previously worked with the Institute for Veteran and Military Families and the USMC Marine for Life program. Amy is married to a Navy Veteran, has two daughters, and resides in North Carolina. Amy’s passion for learning and connecting people fuels her desire to see all people become the best version of themselves. Amy has a Masters of Education with an emphasis on Curriculum and Learning from Liberty University and a Doctorate of Education from Liberty University.

Meagan Thrift

Senior Director of Veteran Services

Meagan Thrift brings over 20 years of experience in the career counseling field to COMMIT, including work in higher education, private sector, government services and independent contracting. As a Nationally Certified Counselor, she has worked with students, civilians, transitioning military and military spouses in all aspects of career transition. She holds two graduate degrees in counseling with a specialization in career counseling from Florida State University. With more than 17 years as a military spouse to a recently retired special operations officer, Meagan understands the military transition process both personally and professionally. She is a native of Louisiana and now calls Virginia Beach home with her husband and three kids.