"Non sibi sed patriae" is a Latin phrase meaning, "Not for self, but country" — the motto was adopted by Mr. LaPorta's former infantry battalion back when he was a armed anthropologist in the U.S. Marine Corps. The phrase has stuck with him over the years and has become a personal mantra in his journalism career, due to the fundamental believe that quality journalism is just as important to the survival of a democracy as the armies guarding its borders.
Mr. LaPorta is an award-winning long-form writer and investigative journalist currently contributing to The Daily Beast. He has covered both local and national politics; national security; conflict; Hurricanes Matthew and Irma; the Department of Defense; the LGBTQ community and the 2018 Parkland, Florida shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
In 2017, Mr. LaPorta received the Distinguished News Reporting Award for his in-depth reporting of the heroin epidemic in Wilmington, North Carolina from the University of North Carolina Wilmington. He also received an award from the Military Reporters and Editors Association for his article detailing how the University of North Carolina Wilmington potentially was jeopardizing national security.
Mr. LaPorta was profiled in The New York Times for his extensive coverage of the Marines United photo scandal in the Department of Defense. He would later testify about his reporting in front of the Congressional Women's Caucus and be officially recognized for his journalism contributions in the U.S. Congress.
Prior to pursuing a career in journalism, Mr. LaPorta served in the U.S. Marine Corps as a infantry rifleman. From 2006 until 2014, he served in multiple leadership billets, working as a infantry squad leader, a combat marksmanship instructor and as an intelligence cell chief.
He graduated from several military schools, including the Combat Marksmanship Instructor Trainers Course and Non-Lethal Weapons and Tactics Course at II Special Operations Training Group. He holds a Black Belt, First Degree through the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program and is an expert shooter in rifle qualifications.
A veteran of the war in Afghanistan, Mr. LaPorta was honorably discharged as a sergeant in 2014. His personal awards include two Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medals, a Combat Action Ribbon, two Good Conduct Medals and a Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal. He received a Presidential Unit Citation authorized by President Barack Obama and has various campaign and foreign country medals.
Before leaving service, Mr. LaPorta was nominated for the 2014 William O. Studeman Military Award from the Intelligence and National Security Alliance for his, "early and significant contributions to intelligence and national security of the United States."