Retired U.S. Navy SEAL Jocko Willink Joins San Diego FC Ownership Group as a Club Partner


San Diego FC today announced two additions to the Club’s ownership group as retired U.S. Navy SEAL officer Jocko Willink and businessman David C. Michan have joined the Club as Partners.

"On behalf of the ownership group, we welcome Jocko and David to the SDFC family and are hugely appreciative of their interest in and support for the project,” said SDFC Owner and Chairman Sir Mohamed Mansour.

Willink, who is a resident of San Diego, is a retired U.S. Navy SEAL officer, co-author of the #1 New York Times bestseller "Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win” and "Dichotomy of Leadership," host of the top-rated Jocko Podcast, and co-founder of Echelon Front, where he serves as Chief Executive Officer. Willink is also a leadership instructor, speaker, and strategic advisor. Jocko spent 20 years in the SEAL Teams, starting as an enlisted SEAL and rising through the ranks to become a SEAL officer. As commander of SEAL Team Three’s Task Unit Bruiser during the battle of Ramadi, he orchestrated SEAL operations that helped the “Ready First” Brigade of the U.S. Army’s First Armored Division bring stability to the violent, war-torn city. Task Unit Bruiser became the most highly decorated Special Operations Unit of the Iraq War.

"Joining San Diego FC as a partner is an incredible honor,” said SDFC Partner Jocko Willink. “With San Diego’s rich military heritage, my goal is to leverage my leadership experience to create strong bonds between the club and those who serve, fostering a culture of unity, resilience, and excellence both on and off the field. Soccer has always been a passion of mine, and I’m excited to bring my leadership and experience to help build a winning culture here. San Diego is my home, and I look forward to playing a role in the success of this great club and our community.”

Willink’s role with SDFC will be instrumental in developing a comprehensive community program framework designed to actively involve and honor the armed services community of San Diego. His extensive military background and leadership experience will help forge strong connections between the club and the men and women who serve.

“We are thrilled to welcome American hero Jocko Willink and David C. Michan to the San Diego FC family,” said SDFC Vice-Chairman and Sycuan Tribal Chairman Cody Martinez. “Jocko's unparalleled leadership experience and deep roots in the San Diego community, combined with David's business wisdom, bring tremendous value to our club. Jocko and David are both San Diegans, demonstrating our desire to deepen and enrich our connection to the community.”

Willink returned from Iraq to serve as Officer-in-Charge of training for all West Coast SEAL Teams. There, he spearheaded the development of leadership training and personally instructed and mentored the next generation of SEAL leaders who have continued to perform with great success on the battlefield. Willink is the recipient of the Silver Star, the Bronze Star, and numerous other personal and unit awards. Upon retiring from the Navy, Willink co-founded Echelon Front, a premier leadership consulting company, where he teaches the leadership principles he learned on the battlefield to help others lead and win. Jocko also authored the "Discipline Equals Freedom Field Manual," a New York Times Bestseller, "Leadership Strategies and Tactics," "Final Spin," and the best-selling "Way of the Warrior Kid" children’s book series. Jocko, who grew up playing soccer, was born in Torrington, Connecticut, and holds a B.A. in English from the University of San Diego.

David C. Michan and his family have been proud San Diego residents since moving from Mexico City in 1981. He is currently the CEO of Strata Equity Group, a family-owned real estate investment firm specializing in owning and operating multi-family and commercial properties and entitling undeveloped land for master planned communities. Prior to joining Strata in 2003, Michan started his real estate career at Colony Capital and spent two years equity trading in New York City. In addition, David is regularly in various leadership roles supporting foundations and institutions in the local San Diego community. Majority of the initiatives have focused on education and strengthening culture among younger generations. David holds a Master of Science in Real Estate from the University of San Diego. David also holds a Bachelor of Arts in International Economics specializing in Latin America, along with a Minor in Accounting, from the University of California Los Angeles.

"I am excited to join San Diego FC's ownership group," said SDFC Partner David C. Michan. "My love for San Diego runs deep, and my passion for soccer is unwavering. I am eager to help the Club forge genuine and enduring connections within our community that will have lasting impacts."