Colonel McCollough was born and raised in Brainerd, Minnesota. He graduated summa cum laude from Norwich University and was commissioned in May 1991. After completing The Basic Officers’ Course with honors, he was assigned to the Infantry Officers’ Course. His first posting was to 2d Battalion, 3d Marines where he served as Platoon Commander and Executive Officer, Company E, and Assistant Battalion Operations Officer.
In 1995, First Lieutenant McCollough reported for duty with Fleet Anti-Terrorism Security Team Company where he commanded 2d Platoon, 5th Platoon, and served as the Executive Officer. He deployed to the Mid-Atlantic to interdict a foreign freighter during Operation MARATHON and to CENTCOM in support of Operation DESERT THUNDER and Operation SOUTHERN WATCH. In 1998 he received orders to Amphibious Warfare School, where he graduated with honors.
Captain McCollough then reported to 3d Battalion, 5th Marines where he served as Weapons Company Commander and Battalion Operations Officer. His subsequent assignment was as the Assistant Operations Officer, G-3, 1st Marine Division.
In 2002 Major McCollough reported to the Office of Legislative Affairs for duty as a Congressional Fellow. Following the Fellowship, he became the Deputy Marine Liaison to the U.S. House of Representatives.
He reported back to 3d Battalion, 5th Marines for duty as Executive Officer in 2005, and was later assigned as the Team Chief for Military Transition Team 131. His team advised 1st Battalion, 3d Brigade, 1st Iraqi Division during Operation IRAQI FREEDOM.
Promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in 2006, he was assigned as the Operations Officer, 1st Marine Regiment. He deployed to Iraq with Regimental Combat Team 1 where he served as the Tribal Engagement Officer and Executive Officer.
Upon return from Iraq Lieutenant Colonel McCollough assumed command of 1st Battalion, 5th Marines. In 2009 he led the unit in Afghanistan in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM where 1/5 seized the Nawa District of Helmand Province during Operation KANJARI.
After battalion command he graduated with honors from the Marine Corps War College, and was subsequently posted to the J-3 on the Joint Staff.
In 2013 Colonel McCollough returned to the operating forces and deployed to Afghanistan as the Officer in Charge of the Regional Command (Southwest) Afghan National Police Advisor Team.
Colonel McCollough’s personal decorations include the Legion of Merit with “V” device, the Bronze Star with “V” device, the Purple Heart, and the Combat Action Ribbon with one gold star.