Derek Barksdale, LT, LDO-6490, USN (Ret.) is a prominent military and civilian motivational leader with a broad background in workforce education and development. Barksdale embodies three decades of experience in facilitating the success of others while in the military as a naval officer, civil service as a Director of Operations, and private sector as an entrepreneur and founder of Military Mutual®. The passion he brings into any forum is evident by his strong desire to advance the personal and professional achievement of others.

A native of Oakland, CA., Barksdale enlisted as an E-1 in 1989, and nine pay-grades later, retired in 2011, as a naval officer designated as Force Protection Officer (FPO) in the Limited Duty Officer (LDO) community. Over his career Barksdale has served as the FPO and/or Training Officer onboard aircraft carriers, major installations, expeditionary squadrons and staff commands overseeing the law enforcement, physical security, weapons and public safety programs for up to 10,000 personnel at a time, ensuring force protection for well over 100,000 personnel; to include dignitaries, VIPs and High Value Assets critical to maintaining national defense.

Transitioning from his military career, Barksdale served over four years as a senior government service employee, directing the operations for over 350 civilian and military personnel, ensuring their personal and professional success was incorporated into the planning, managing and evaluation of daily routines.

Barksdale attained his Bachelor’s Degree in Workforce Education and Development from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, and served in multiple educational and developmental roles throughout his career. Commonly known as not only "the expert," but "the expert who trains the experts," he is an active member of nine different local and national non-profit organizations intended to empower others to make informed personal and professional decisions. He is frequently sought after for his sage advice throughout the nation.

As the Founder of Military Mutual® and the Military Mutual Initiative, Barksdale directs a nationwide company and non-profit organization with offices that span from California to Florida, and a network that reaches into nearly every city with a military installation. He founded these organizations based on the sole principle of giving back to our nation’s military, veterans and their families through transitioning resources, programs, services and financial assistance intended to empower its members to make informed decisions alongside associate professionals with similar military affiliation. Today, Military Mutual® is the only known relocation organization for military, veterans and their families…exclusively employing military, veterans and their families!