The American Freedom Foundation, Inc.


VISION – AFF is, and always will be, relentlessly driven to bettering the lives of veterans, military service members and their families.

PURPOSE – In return for their service and sacrifices made for our country, AFF believes veterans, military service members and their families are deserving of support that empowers and enables them to lead confident and productive lives.

MISSION – AFF honors, serves and supports veterans, military service members, and their families by creating awareness and building support of their service, sacrifice and needs through partnerships with military focused organizations.

Throughout its short history, the American Freedom Foundation has made grants in excess of $1.1 million to more than 30 military organizations and awarded over 550 academic scholarships valued at approximately $5 million to military spouses and their dependents through the AFF/Kaplan University scholarship program.  Through the AFF national veterans employment initiative program, Warriors To The Workforce, thousands of veterans have been connected to hundreds of participating companies for civilian employment opportunities.

The American Freedom Festival is a series of concert events that features music performers, actors, athletes, dignitaries and other supporters, joining together to help support and fulfill the mission of the American Freedom Foundation.

Board of Directors

SMA (retired) Jack L. Tilley, Co-Founder, Chairman and CEO
A career soldier, SMA Tilley held many leadership positions within the Department of the Army until his retirement January of 2004. As Sergeant Major of the Army, he sat on a wide variety of councils and boards that made decisions affecting enlisted Soldiers and their families.

After retirement SMA Tilley has continued his advocacy of the men and women in uniform. In addition to co-chairing the American Freedom Festival Organizing Committee, he also gives speeches around the country to help raise the public consciousness in support of our military.

Ted Hacker, Co-Founder, President and COO
Ted Hacker is President and CEO of Ted Hacker Consulting and co-founder, with SMA Tilley, of the American Freedom Foundation.  Prior to establishing the consulting company, Ted headed up International Artist Management (IAM),  a full-service artist management and event production company specializing in the field of country music and served as its President and CEO.  IAM's client list has included superstars The Oak Ridge Boys, Dr. Hook, B.J. Thomas, Diamond Rio and Darryl Worley.  For the past two years, Ted created and produced the wildly successful country music extravaganza, BamaJam Music & Arts Festival.  Under Hacker's leadership, BamaJam drew in excess of 100,000 people for the three-day event that featured 36 acts on three stages over 600 acres.

At Christmas during 2002 and 2003, Ted joined SMA Tilley for a USO tour of Afghanistan, Iraq, Kuwait and Uzbekistan with Darryl Worley. It was during these tours that the concept of the American Freedom Foundation was born.

  • David Barber (Barber & Company) Vice Chairman and Chair, Development and Marketing Committee
  • Brigadier General Stan Cherrie (retired) (Cubic Corporation)
  • Mike Buchen (Buchen Consulting)
  • Steven K. Cook (Goldbelt Glacier-Healt Services, LLC)
  • Joe Cunningham (Able Forces, Inc.)
  • Scott Denniston (The Scott Group)
  • Dee Geise
  • Lieutenant Colonel Steven Geise (retired)
  • SGM Todd Hunter (retired) (Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army Chair, Governace and Nominating Committee
  • Mary Keeser (America's Adopt A Soldier)
  • Patrick Milligan (Kaplan University)
  • SGM Johnny Myers (retired) Treasurer and Chair, Finance Committee
  • Lieutenant General Michael Rochelle (retired) (MDR Strategies)
  • Guy Timberlake (American Small Business Coalition)
  • Dave Trifiletti (Egg Strategy)
  • Karri Turner (Actress)
  • Sam White (Capital Associates) 
  • Becky Wright-Brizee (SourceAmerica)  Chairwoman, Grants Committee

Advisory Committee:

  • Phil Panzarella (CPS Professional Services, LLC)