Trip O’Connell

Program Manager

Headshot of Trip O'Connell, a white man with long brown hair in front of scenic mountains

Trip O’Connell is a Program Manager, a 2023 MPU Fellow, and on the Brickyard Leadership team in Austin, Texas.

Born in Virginia and raised on the DC/Maryland border in Chevy Chase, Trip is the son of Terry O’Connell highly decorated Vietnam Veteran and Linda Foley who kept Terry in line for almost 50 years prior to his passing in 2019. As a multi-sport athlete in high school Trip learned to express himself on the field of play and how to debate with his teachers. He took that same spirit with him to the University of Delaware where he was a member of the UD football team for two seasons. At university, he found his love for political engagement, principled debate, and community building.

His time at UD allowed him the proximity to partake as a security organizer at the 2004 Democratic Convention in Boston and lead to his participation as an Advance team member with the Kerry/Edwards campaign in New York for the Summer prior to his senior year. This valuable experience was a benefit when Trip moved to Las Vegas, Nevada in 2006 to work on the GOTV team for the Jack Carter for US Senate campaign. Unfortunately, the campaign was not successful and altered Trip’s planned trajectory of returning home to DC to work on the Hill as staff to Jack Cater, but taught him many valuable lessons in communication, team work, and organization.

Following the campaign, Trip took his community building and relationship skills into the hospitality industry in Las Vegas and Los Angeles for the next 4 years from 2006-2010 where learned about business operations, human resources, management and promotions. Despite the valuable learning experiences and relationships that the hospitality industry had to offer, Trip felt that he needed to engage in a more purposeful pursuit. One that he had always dreamt of.

After 2 years of training and preparation, Trip left for Air Force basic training to become a Tactical Air Control Party(TACP)/Joint Terminal Attack Controller (JTAC) with the 274th Air Support Operations Squadron in New York for 6 years. During his time in the USAF, Trip was an Honor Graduate of several schools including the TACP Schoolhouse and recipient of the Commandant’s Award at Airman Leadership School.

Following his separation from the Air Force at the end of 2019, Trip returned home to his native Washington DC and entered into the Health & Wellness space after seeing a lack of community, connectivity, and accountability by opening multiple F45 locations in the DC/VA.MD area. His success in opening 5 successful locations in 3 years on the studio franchise side of the business caught the eye of F45 HeadQuarters who brought Trip on to their team to develop the programming for the F45 Military Division which was built to help aid in the transition of US Military members out of service and into the civilian community through training, education, and operational placement within the F45 Studio system. That program still exists today and has helped transition hundreds of military members out of their time in service and into qualified positions in F45 studios.

Trip is building his passion project with Sandlot Technology and GORUCK to develop an application that brings people together in the real world via technology to spend less time with their faces buried in devices and participate in group fitness, community building, and human-to-human engagement.