About The Author



Theodore Roosevelt and the Making of American Leadership Book, Unpublished documents on TR, Presidential Leadership, American History, US President, Author Jon Knokey

Jon Knokey is a former NCAA quarterback for Montana State University.  He holds a Masters in Business Administration from Dartmouth College and a Masters in Public Administration from Harvard University.

Jon was a Vice President for a start-up software company before joining the MBA executive leadership program at General Electric. He has served as a Representative in the Montana Legislature and now manages the Corporate Strategy for John Deere. His career has focused on leadership and management at the intersection of business and government.  

Jon is married to Meghan Knokey and they have two young daughters, Avary and Quinn and a son, Jack.

This is his first book.


       “Jon Knokey shows how Theodore Roosevelt became an iconic American leader with such insight and color that it makes you feel as is if TR were alive today! Through the words of a remarkable cast of characters whom knew TR intimately, Knokey not only sheds new light on one of the most influential people in American history, but also gives men and women today the opportunity to discover Teddy Roosevelt’s leadership secrets. It’s a vital book for aspiring leaders."
                   —Christopher Ruddy, CEO, Newsmax Media 

       “Jon Knokey’s work is a perfect combination of historical fact and artful interpretation. Meticulously researched using primary sources, the book provides a rare view into Roosevelt’s mind and heart. It traces his development from an impressionable boy observing Abraham Lincoln’s funeral to a decisive president poised to lead the country confidently onto the world stage. This is not just a work of historical significance, it is a beautifully written and insightful glimpse into a complicated and powerful leader.”

                    - Elizabeth Winslow, Professor, Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth, Organizational Behavior & Leadership

​​     “Theodore Roosevelt's leadership journey - the story of a sickly boy who wills himself into a life of vigor, purpose, and genuine heroism - is one of the great tales in American history.  Here Jon Knokey views that saga through fresh eyes and presents it in a lively, enlightening narrative.  Making of American Leadership is filled with fascinating details, wise insights, and life lessons. I love this book!”
                    - John McConnell, Speechwriter President George W. Bush 

     “Theodore Roosevelt packed a full life of experience into the four decades before he became our nation’s youngest president. Jon Knokey’s volume, utilizing previously unpublished accounts by his contemporaries, helps illuminate the contradictions that filled TR’s pre-presidential years and that persisted throughout his life. Few Americans have proven as consequential as Theodore Roosevelt in shaping America’s place in the world and in establishing American leadership. This volume contributes to our understanding of the years that shaped this remarkable leader and president.

                   - Roger B. Porter, IBM Professor of Business and Government, Master of Dunster House, Harvard University​