John Batiste is a 1974 graduate of the United States Military Academy. He served 31 years in the US Army as an infantry officer with deployments in the First Gulf War, Bosnia, Kosovo, and Iraq in 2004. His final position was Commanding General of the 1st Infantry Division during peace enforcement operations in Kosovo and combat operations in Iraq.
He transitioned to the steel industry in late 2005 and first served as president of Klein Steel until 2013. During this period, Klein Steel was recognized as one of ten IndustryWeek Best Plants in North America and a New York State Best Place to Work. His passion to find a better way to produce armor led him to start a new steel company, Buffalo Armory. Since 2013, the company has 11 granted patents on its unique induction technology and is recognized for its ballistic solutions in the markets of body armor, police car door armor, and ballistic barriers for schools, places of worship, and offices.
In 2016, John and his daughter, Jeanette, partnered to form Batiste Leadership to assist companies and organizations to define, build, and nurture cultures of trust and empowerment.
John has served on non-profit boards in support of Veterans and is a past executive committee member of the Raffles Insurance Captive and Metals Service Center Institute.