Jocko Willink

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Jocko Willink
Birth nameJohn Gretton Willink, Jr.
Born (1971-09-08) September 8, 1971 (age 49)
Torrington, Connecticut, U.S.
Allegiance United States
Service/branch United States Navy
Years of service1990–2010
RankUS-O4 insignia.svg Lieutenant commander
UnitSEAL-TEAM3.jpg SEAL Team 3
Battles/warsIraq War
Awards Silver Star Medal
Bronze Star Medal with Valor
Alma materUniversity of San Diego[1]

John Gretton "Jocko" Willink (born September 8, 1971)[2] is an American author, podcaster, and retired naval officer who served in the Navy SEALs.

His military service included combat actions in the war in Iraq, where he eventually commanded the SEAL Team 3's Task Unit Bruiser that fought in the battle against the Iraqi insurgents in Ramadi, and was honored with the Silver Star and Bronze Star for his service. He achieved the rank of Lieutenant Commander.[3]

Willink co-authored the books Extreme Ownership and The Dichotomy of Leadership (with fellow retired SEAL Leif Babin) and co-founded the management consulting firm Echelon Front, LLC.[4] Willink hosts a weekly podcast with Brazilian jiu jitsu practitioner Echo Charles, called the Jocko Podcast.[5]

Military career[edit]

After Navy recruit training and Radioman (RM) "A" School training, he reported to Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL training (BUD/S) training at Naval Amphibious Base Coronado. Willink graduated BUD/S class 177. Following SEAL Tactical Training (STT) and completion of six month probationary period, he received the NEC 5326 as a Combatant Swimmer (SEAL), entitled to wear the SEAL insignia. Willink served eight years on active duty, as an enlisted Navy SEAL with SEAL Team ONE and SEAL Team TWO. Willink was part of the SEAL team that seized the Russian Tanker Volga-Neft-147 in the Gulf of Oman which was carrying Iraqi oil in violation of a U.N. economic embargo. Willink earned his commission via Officer Candidate School and eventually served as a platoon commander. Willink completed multiple deployments to Asia, the Middle East and Europe. During Operation Iraqi Freedom he deployed to the Iraqi city of Ramadi in 2006 with SEAL Team THREE as commander of Task Unit Bruiser, which included Marc Alan Lee, Michael Monsoor, Jonny Kim, Kevin Lacz, and Chris Kyle. Willink also served as a Navy SEAL instructor during his career. He retired in October 2010 after 20 years of service.[6]

Post-Navy career[edit]

After retiring from the Navy, Willink co-founded the leadership consulting firm Echelon Front along with Leif Babin, who served with him in the SEAL Teams[7] He and Babin also co-authored the leadership manual Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy Seals Lead and Win.[8] After appearing on the podcasts of Tim Ferriss, Joe Rogan, and Sam Harris to publicize his book, Willink started his own weekly podcast, The Jocko Podcast.[9]

In addition to his work in consulting and authorship, Willink instructs jiu-jitsu at Victory MMA & Fitness in San Diego and co-owns Origin USA,[10] a company based in Farmington, Maine which produces lifestyle apparel, nutrition supplements, and fitness equipment,[11] as well as being one of the only manufacturers of jiu-jitsu gis in the United States.[12] Willink has a chapter giving advice in Tim Ferriss' book Tools of Titans.


Adult Nonfiction[edit]

  • Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy Seals Lead and Win (2015) (ISBN 978-1-76055-820-8)
  • Discipline Equals Freedom: Field Manual (2017) (ISBN 978-1-250-15694-5)
  • The Dichotomy of Leadership: Balancing the Challenges of Extreme Ownership to Lead and Win (2018) (ISBN 978-1-250-19577-7)
  • Leadership Strategy and Tactics: Field Manual (2020) (ISBN 978-1-250-22684-6)
  • The Code. The Evaluation. The Protocols: Striving to Become an Eminently Qualified Human (2020) (ISBN 978-0-9816188-2-1)

Children's books[edit]

Way of the Warrior Kid (2017–2019)[edit]

  1. The Way of the Warrior Kid (2017) (ISBN 978-1-250-15107-0)
  2. Marc's Mission: Way of the Warrior Kid (2018) (ISBN 978-1-250-15679-2)
  3. Way of the Warrior Kid 3: Where there's a Will... (2019) (ISBN 978-1-942549-48-2)

Awards and decorations[edit]

United States Navy Special Warfare insignia.png
Ribbon of the MSM
Award star (gold).png Award star (gold).pngAward star (gold).pngAward star (gold).pngAward star (gold).png
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svgBronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation ribbon.svg
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svgBronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg FMF Ribbon
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze star
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svgBronze-service-star-3d-vector.svgBronze-service-star-3d-vector.svgBronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg U.S. Navy Expert Rifleman Ribbon.svg U.S. Navy Expert Pistol Shot Ribbon.svg
U.S. Naval Parachutist Insignia.png
Badge Special Warfare insignia
1st row Silver Star Bronze Star
with "V" device
Meritorious Service Medal
2nd row Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal
with 1 Gold 5/16 inch star
Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal
with 4 Gold 5/16 inch stars
Combat Action Ribbon
3rd row Navy Unit Commendation
with 2 Service Stars
Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation Battle Efficiency Award
4th row Navy Good Conduct Medal
with 2 Service Stars
Navy Fleet Marine Force Ribbon National Defense Service Medal
with 1 Service star
5th row Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
with 1 Service star
Southwest Asia Service Medal
with 1 Service star
Iraq Campaign Medal
with 3 Campaign stars
6th row Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal Global War on Terrorism Service Medal Humanitarian Service Medal
7th row Navy and Marine Corps Sea Service Deployment Ribbon
with 4 Service Stars
Rifle Marksmanship Medal
with Expert Device
Pistol Marksmanship Medal
with Expert Device
Badge Navy and Marine Corps Parachutist Badge


  1. ^
  2. ^ "Extreme Ownership". Macmillan Publishers. Retrieved January 23, 2016.
  3. ^ "Lead. Win". Echelon Front. Retrieved May 28, 2020.
  4. ^ "Jocko Podcast – Leadership and Discipline". Retrieved May 28, 2020.
  5. ^ "These former Navy SEALS explain why you should wake up before dawn to win at life". Maxim. Retrieved April 16, 2017.
  6. ^ "Echelon Front". Echelon Front. Retrieved February 1, 2016.
  7. ^ "Why this retired Navy SEAL commander has 3 alarm clocks and wakes up at 4:30 a.m." Business Insider. Retrieved January 23, 2016.
  8. ^ Schawbel, Dan. "Jocko Willink: Career Advice From a Former Navy SEAL". Retrieved April 16, 2017.
  9. ^
  10. ^ "Origin Maine". Origin Maine. Retrieved March 1, 2020.
  11. ^

External links[edit]