Adam Josefczyk

Co-Founder & President

Adam Josefczyk is the President of Forge Leadership Network, an organization that he co-founded with Justin Powell.

Prior to launching Forge, Adam served, at the age of 24, as a vice president of a leading public policy organization in Ohio. In 2013, he also co-founded Ohio Conservative Review, a web platform for conservative ideas to be discussed, debated, and promoted in the Buckeye State. In 2012, while teaching public speaking and current events at a high school, Adam led grassroots efforts for conservative causes in the presidential election. His regional phone banks led the nation with over 500,000 phone calls made.

Adam graduated summa cum laude from the University of Dayton in 2011, earning honors as the top student in both the history and political science departments. Adam was the first-ever recipient of the Timothy Award from the Center for Christian Virtue in 2017. He was chosen as one of the 2017 William F. Buckley Award winners, presented nationally by America’s Future Foundation to five young professionals for their “above-and-beyond service to the liberty movement.”

Adam, his wife Jessica, and their young children Jane and Henry, are proud to call Southwest Ohio home and are members of Centerville Christian Fellowship. He is an avid golfer and long-suffering, die-hard fan of his hometown Cincinnati Bengals.

Brad Gruber

Chief Operating Officer

Brad Gruber is the Chief Operating Officer of Forge Leadership Network. He is responsible for all aspects of Forge’s day-to-day activities.

Prior to joining Forge, Brad was the COO of State Policy Network. He also serves on the boards of multiple nonprofits. Outside of Forge, much of his time is spent re-establishing intergenerational households.

Brad has spent time building addiction recovery programs based on Biblical principles and travels to closed countries to assist missionaries.

Brad earned a Master’s Degree from Regent University and an Undergraduate Degree from the University of Florida. He is a former officer in the U.S. Air Force. He is married with five children and lives in Cincinnati, OH.

Jeremiah Martin

Vice President of Programs

Jeremiah Martin is the Vice President of Programs for Forge Leadership Network and an alumnus of the Forge Mentorship Academy.

Prior to joining Forge, he worked as Executive Director of First Freedom Ohio, the grassroots action partner of the Center for Christian Virtue. As Executive Director, Jeremiah was tasked with overseeing the administration, programs, and strategic plan of the organization. This included developing and executing a grassroots plan to educate voters and advocate for pro-freedom policies.

Jeremiah is an U.S. Army Veteran with a combined 14 years of military service, including two tours overseas. On his most recent tour, he deployed to Iraq in 2017 as a part of a joint taskforce consisting of Army, Air Force, Navy, and Marines. Jeremiah currently serves in the Army Reserve as a Chaplain Assistant.

Before that, he worked as the State Director for the Ohio Chapter of Concerned Veterans for America (CVA). During his time at CVA he worked to ensure veterans have access to world class healthcare. Jeremiah led one of the most successful teams in the country and advocated for veterans on the state and federal level.

He graduated from Lee University with a Bachelor of Science in Pastoral Ministries and from Liberty University with a Master of Arts in Christian Leadership.

Jeremiah currently lives in North Central Ohio with his wife and four young children.

Jennie Simunek

Logistics & Events Director

Jennie Simunek is the Logistics and Events Director for Forge Leadership Network. Having a wealth of experience in organizational growth and development, Jennie brings structural leadership to Forge as she executes logistics for all programming and events.

Jennie’s calling into education began as a founding board member for a private Christian academy in Cincinnati. During her tenure there she also served as an executive assistant to the elementary and high school principals, both during times of increased growth and expansion for the school.  Having been invited by the principal to teach history, Jennie embarked on an adventure that grew into a love of teaching middle and high school students in history, comparative worldviews, and government.

A graduate of Miami University, Jennie holds a multidisciplinary degree in International Studies with focuses on Europe and the Middle East. As an undergraduate, Jennie spent a year in Luxembourg studying international relations and economics, and traveling throughout Europe, the Soviet Union, and Saudi Arabia. This experience equipped her to later serve as an analyst for the Central Intelligence Agency during the Reagan administration.

Jennie is a member of Faith Christian Fellowship Church, and she and her husband, Jim, live in Cincinnati. They have three grown daughters, who all live in Chicago, allowing Jennie to return often to where she grew up.

Grace Barron

Director of Marketing & Student Recruitment

Grace Barron is the Director of Marketing and Recruitment for Forge Leadership Network and an alumna of the Forge Mentorship Academy.

A graduate of Grove City College with a degree in History, Grace served as Editor in Chief of the college newspaper The Collegian and facilitated student events with organizations including American Enterprise Institute, American Majority, Leadership Institute, American Conservative Union, and Americans For Prosperity.

Before joining the Forge team, Grace worked on a conservative New Hampshire congressional campaign developing a thriving intern program that was responsible for thousands of voter contacts.

Grace is a life-long New Englander who enjoys collecting random historical facts and lives with her husband in New Hampshire.

Joseph Backholm is Senior Fellow for Biblical Worldview and Strategic Engagement at Family Research Council. He combines extensive legal, political, and policy experience with a love for the way biblical truth cultivates human flourishing.