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Posted: February 24, 2021

HARKER HEIGHTS, Texas — The Military Child Education Coalition® today announced the appointment of Tim Farrell as the nonprofit’s senior vice president and chief operating officer.


Farrell joins the MCEC® Executive Leadership Team, along with Vice President of Fund Development Cindy Simerly, Vice President of Programs and Curriculum Annette Farmer, and President and CEO Dr. Becky Porter.


“Tim is a proven leader who has successfully led and delivered quality results everywhere he’s served, and we are honored to welcome him to the MCEC family,” said Porter. “His experience and his passion for serving the military community make Tim an ideal fit to help expand our global efforts to educate, advocate, and collaborate for all military-connected children.”


As SVP and COO, Farrell’s responsibilities include: leading internal day-to-day operations, overseeing the organization’s budget, guiding the performance management processes for key impact measurements, cultivating the nonprofit’s reach with influential stakeholders, and working with education and elected officials on behalf of MCEC to continue the organization’s national advocacy efforts in support of the Purple Star School Designation Program.


"I've been fortunate to partner with MCEC previously in multiple military community nonprofit leadership roles, and I’ve witnessed their impact on military-connected students, parents, educators, and those who administer and govern their learning,” said Farrell. “As MCEC approaches 25 years of service, I’m thrilled to join the team and help advance our mission of educating, advocating, and collaborating to resolve education challenges associated with the military lifestyle and to realize our vision of ensuring every military-connected child is college-, work-, and life-ready."


Farrell joins the MCEC family after serving as the CEO for the National Association of Veteran-Serving Organizations (NAVSO).

He continues to serve locally in his hometown of San Antonio with the city’s Veterans Affairs Commission, the World Affairs Council board of trustees, and advocates for robust development and diplomacy alongside defense as a Texas State Leader and one of the “Veterans for Smart Power” within the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition. He is also a past chair of Students of Service (SOS) - San Antonio.

Farrell is a retired U.S. Air Force officer who served for more than 23 years and rose to the rank of colonel. He is also a Veteran of Operations Desert Shield, Desert Storm, Iraqi Freedom, and New Dawn. Farrell retired from Active Duty in September 2011, following the completion of his final assignment as commander of the 332nd Expeditionary Security Forces Group while deployed to Joint Base Balad, Iraq.

He holds a Bachelor of Arts in economics from Rutgers University, a Master of Science in administration from Central Michigan University, and an executive certificate in transformational nonprofit leadership from the University of Notre Dame.


Jack Ballantyne, Farrell’s predecessor, officially retires on March 31.

Ballantyne, a retired U.S. Army colonel with 31 years of service, joined MCEC in January 2014. Over the course of his seven years with the organization, Ballantyne’s leadership proved invaluable and significantly helped MCEC broaden its advocacy, education, and collaborative efforts on multiple fronts – most notably in recent years championing MCEC to become the national advocate for the Purple Star School Designation Program.


“Jack’s tenure with MCEC has seen tremendous growth for the organization,” added Porter. “He is a consummate professional who shepherded the MCEC budget and operations through a challenging environment. His steady hand and dedicated approach will be missed.”


Ballantyne will remain with MCEC through March and work with Farrell as the organization prepares for two critical events: the launch of the USAA-funded SchoolQuest™ initiative in conjunction with the month of the military child, in April, and the nonprofit’s annual National Training Seminar scheduled for July 19-21.


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About the Military Child Education Coalition
MCEC is a 501(c)(3) global nonprofit leadership and advocacy organization. MCEC supports all military-connected children by educating, advocating, and collaborating to resolve education challenges associated with the military lifestyle. Learn more about the national advocacy efforts of MCEC at and follow us on social media at Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

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Please contact the MCEC Director of Marketing and Communications, Rob Frazier, by email at, for questions about this release.

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