My name is Michael Nolan. I am a retired infantryman and life-long martial artist who writes and produces content that strives to evoke an emotional response, motivate, entertain, and educate. My material often (but not always) has a military or martial arts focus. A little bit more about me –
I was born in Royal Oak, Michigan, but grew up in Columbus, Ohio. I am the son of an Irish-American sailor who married a beautiful Puerto Rican from a good family. My dad would spend a few decades, after leaving the Navy and having a stint at the University of Michigan, engaged in various creative entrepreneurial endeavors until he eventually became a farrier, invented the Nolan Hoof Plate, and enjoyed some modest success towards the end of his days. The entrepreneurial roller coaster of my father’s life, however, was offset by my mother who provided the family with some stability through her own employment at the Ohio State University and the support of her family back in Puerto Rico.
Once I turned eighteen, I joined the military as an infantryman and eventually served in the Marine Corps, Marine Corps Reserves, and the Army National Guard between the years 1990 and 2016. During my military service I participated in Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm, Operation Provide Promise/Deny Flight, and United Nations Operation Somalia with 1st Battalion, 8th Marines. With the 3rd Battalion, 25th Marines I participated in Joint Task Force Six along the U.S.-Mexican border. I also did two tours in Iraq, first with the 1452nd Transportation Company in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom 04-05, and then with the 3rd Battalion, 116th Infantry Brigade Combat Team in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom 07-08. My military decorations include the Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Achievement Medal (3 awards), Army Reserve Component Achievement Medal (7 awards), and the Combat Infantryman’s Badge among others.
During this time, I graduated magna cum laude in 1998 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Franklin University. I also hold a Master of Business Administration degree (2006) from the University of Phoenix as well as a Master of Science degree in National Resource Strategy (2013) from The Eisenhower School at National Defense University where I was an Afghanistan/Pakistan Fellow and a member of the Land Combat Systems industry study. I also have about twenty years of civilian service in both the defense and intelligence communities that included roles as the Chief Financial Officer for the standup of the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency as well as a Senior Advisor to the Ministry of Defense of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.
When I’m not working, I enjoy spending time practicing the martial arts. I am a lifelong martial artist having studied various arts from all over the world but focusing my efforts primarily on the Chinese martial arts. I studied Wing Chun and Tai Chi from Dr. Fred Ming-An Wu starting in 1983 until Dr. Wu’s death in 2000, excepting periods of military service. And currently, I study Shuai Chiao in Northern Virginia under Master Nick Masi, a student of Dr. Daniel Chi-hsiu Weng, himself a top disciple of the world-renowned Grandmaster Chang Tung-Sheng.
To see the latest on what is going on with me, check out the News page. You can also reach out via the Contact form. Lastly, don’t forget to visit my YouTube channel for videos I occasionally post. Thanks for visiting the site and I hope to hear from you soon.