As a direct result of the attack of 9⁄11, Erik was moved to get personally involved and decided to serve in the military of his country. Erik left a thriving TV production company that he and his brother formed, joined the Navy Reserves, and currently holds the rank of Chief Petty Officer as a Navy Cryptologic Technician Technical. On the civilian side, he was a Senior Research Scientist developing Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) and Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) solutions for the Department of Defense, before announcing his run for U.S. Senate. Erik’s cyber, technical and policy research in this area is credited with achieving significant advances for the U.S. efforts oversees and at home in the continued fight against terrorism.
Erik earned his bachelor’s degree (with honors) in Psychology with a minor in Sociology while on active duty from American Military University with a specialty in: Psychology of War and Terrorism. He earned a master’s degree in Military Studies / Intelligence Operations from American Military University while on active duty. With the repeated urging of his leadership and mentors while on active duty at NSA, he pursued his passion for public policy by working on his PhD in Public Policy / Homeland Security and is currently a PhD candidate working on his dissertation. Erik also attended Harvard Extension school while on active duty, studying Middle Eastern studies.