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Colonel Brooks Braden
Commanding Officer
Marine Innovation Unit

Colonel Brooks Braden is a native of Northern California. He graduated from Thomas Aquinas College in 1997 and from the University of the Pacific McGeorge School of Law in 2001. He joined the Marine Corps on September 12, 2001.

Col Braden began active-duty service as a judge advocate with 3d Force Service Support Group serving in various billets including as the Officer in Charge of Legal Assistance and the Tax Center. Subsequently, he served as Aide-de-Camp of the Commander, Marine Corps Air Bases Western Area, Marine Corps Air Station Miramar. He deployed with Expeditionary Strike Group 3 embarked on USS Peleliu to Pacific Command and Central Command performing the duties of Flag Aide, Civil Affairs Officer, and Deputy Staff Judge Advocate. He served on the staff of Combined Task Force 158 protecting Iraqi waters and oil infrastructure and providing maritime security in the Northern Arabian Gulf, and on the staff of Combined Task Force 59 supporting Theater Security Cooperation and the 2006 Lebanon Noncombatant Evacuation Operation. Following his deployment, he served as a series and company commander at Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego.

As a member of the Marine Corps Reserve, Col Braden served four years as the Associate Counsel of Fiscal and Procurement Law, Office of the Counsel for the Commandant. He served as the Executive Officer of 2d Battalion, 24th Marines during Integrated Training Exercise 4-17 and the Deputy Branch Head of the Reserve Operational Law Branch, Headquarters Marine Corps. As a member of the Marine Air Ground Task Force Staff Training Program, he served as the Deputy Team Leader of the Civil-Military Operations and Legal Team; the Team Leader of the Intelligence and Information Operations Team; and during II Marine Expeditionary Force’s 2023 Joint Task Force Exercise, as the Deputy Exercise Director and Higher Headquarters Chief of Staff.

In his civilian capacity, Col Braden earned a Master of Business Administration from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management and was recruited into the general management development program of a multinational corporation. This led to leadership roles in sales, marketing, new product development, operations, and lean process improvement in the transportation, energy, and payment sectors. He has extensive experience managing product and service lifecycles from identification of customer needs, development of product and service concepts and business cases, speed design review, design for manufacturing, commercial launch, and customer adoption. He has led successful organizations, from startup businesses to mature enterprises, in change management, quality improvement, and waste reduction. He is now a principal and co-founder of a healthcare company that owns hospitals and provides ambulance services. He has held multiple positions in healthcare management, including Chief Operating Officer, hospital Chief Executive Officer and hospital board member.

Col Braden is a graduate of the Marine Corps Command and Staff College and Army War College Distance Education Programs.