Veteran Owned & Operated
Catalyst Executive Advising & Development (CEAD)* specializes in developing leaders and shaping organizational culture. We are a seasoned team of professionals with expertise in Leadership Development, Executive Coaching, Healthcare Administration, and Military to Civilian
transition/integration, prepared to help transform your organization and maximize your individual and collective effectiveness.
*CEAD is also the parent company of Catalyst Human Performance Experts—providing performance enhancement and psychological services for individuals and groups
Mike and Wendy Perry met while stationed at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, DC. They married in 1998 and managed two careers, raising children, competing assignments, graduate school, command and leadership positions, and many other challenges facing dual military couples. Through it all, they supported each other through every trying time and each tough decision.
With an unrelenting desire to transform their world outside of the Army, Wendy retired after 21 years of service in 2015, and Mike followed in 2016.
MICHAEL E. PERRY, PH.D.
Human Performance and Behavior Expert
Chief Executive Officer
Mike is a Clinical Psychologist, leadership consultant, leadership coach, trainer, and retired Army Officer. During his military service of over 21 years, Mike held various leadership positions in the US and abroad. His extensive experience in leadership and human performance is coupled with a particular passion for helping leaders to drive meaningful change and create unified culture. Mike is a graduate of Norfolk State University, Norfolk, VA. He holds a Ph.D. degree in Clinical Psychology and a Master of Science Degree in Medical Psychology from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland. He is also a graduate of Georgetown University’s Leadership Coaching certification program and the Harvard Kennedy School’s Practice of Adaptive Leadership program. Mike can be credited with developing The Catalyst Human Experience (HEx) Model.
WENDY M. PERRY
Leadership and Transformation Architect
Vice President & Principal
Wendy is a Registered Nurse and seasoned expert leader. During over 21 years of Army service, she held various leadership positions in the U.S. and abroad. Wendy is committed to mentoring aspiring leaders and, in particular, inspiring and empowering women in leadership. Wendy is a graduate of Prairie View A&M University, Prairie View, TX. She holds a Master of Science Degree from the University of Maryland, having earned post-Masters certificates in Health Services Leadership & Management and Teaching in Nursing and Health Professions. She is a graduate of the Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF) at Syracuse University’s Veteran Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship (V-WISE) Program. She is also a graduate of The University of Georgia’s Center for Continuing Education Sherpa Executive Coaching Program. Wendy is the author of Pow(Her) Surge: Recognizing and Accessing Power Within.
The role of Army Psychologist was demanding…challenging…sometimes daunting.
My job had two major components: 1) Help Soldiers to overcome life’s challenges and remain ready to serve, sometimes in unimaginably difficult and dangerous situations, and 2) Help leaders create a people-first culture and assist in making decisions about Soldier’s ability to contribute safely and effectively toward the mission.
Some people have called me and my colleagues the first line of defense in maintaining the psychological health of those Soldiers. I do not agree. The first line of defense is actually the unit—the people that live and serve together every day. In most organizations, military or not, there are groups of people working daily to accomplish things together that they could never accomplish alone. Stronger relationships drive greater accomplishments. Leaders establish the culture that determine how effective those relationships will be.
Unfortunately, I have seen the tragic cost when leaders create a culture void of connection, psychological safety, and trust. Lives are at stake and lives have been lost, suicide in particular. Let me be clear…It is not completely reasonable to assign direct blame to leaders for loss of life in many of these cases. The reality, however, is that leaders determine if a culture promotes strong relationships and support, or defensiveness and isolation. Where there are strong relationships, morale is higher, performance is superior, and people are healthier. Where there are strong relationships, help is available. Where there is defensiveness and isolation, performance suffers, morale is low, and overall health suffers. Where there is defensiveness and isolation, the help is not readily available, because it is difficult to provide assistance to anyone else if you believe you must protect yourself. The first line of defense becomes ineffective.
For most of you, the consequences of an unsupportive culture are unlikely to result in tragedy, but make no mistake, quality of life and level of performance suffer when your team is unable to form meaningful connections. Culture and climate have a significant impact on the lives of millions of people every day, impacting every fiber of their lives. Families suffer. People struggle. All due to leadership.
My current mission in life is to help leaders create a people-centered culture that values relationships, builds trust, and unleashes the collective talent of every member of the team.