2024 Tillman Scholar

Matthew Balint

University of California - Berkeley

“Having witnessed firsthand the crippling effects a lack of support has on our youth, I’m committed to creating opportunities through sports and education to help underprivileged youth achieve their dreams.”

Matt was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the U.S. Army from Purdue University in 1997. Growing up in Youngstown, Ohio, Matt takes pride in the work ethic and humility his parents instilled in him and his three brothers. He credits his family and blue-collar community for his selfless service, commitment to others, and empathetic leadership. 

As an Infantry platoon leader and a Special Forces officer deploying to war-torn and impoverished countries, Matt witnessed firsthand the crippling effects a lack of support has in defining young men and women’s futures. Those experiences taught him the power people have in overcoming hardship, defining their future, and the vital impact others can have along the way. As a result of these experiences, Matt has dedicated his career to helping people create a better path for a brighter future. 

With nearly three decades of experience leading talented teams in complex, strategically sensitive environments, Matt has seen firsthand the powerful impact high-performing organizations can make. He wants to bring his leadership experience and operational knowledge, from leading special forces teams to advising senior leaders, to help build and lead an organization committed to helping disadvantaged young men and women. 

Matt seeks an MBA from the University of California–Berkeley to make his dream a reality, mentoring disadvantaged young men and women through fitness and education programs to help them pursue their dreams.