Operation Underground Railroad

Founder & CEO, Tim Ballard

Timothy Ballard is the Founder and CEO of Operation Underground Railroad (O.U.R.). He also serves as O.U.R.'s Jump Team Commander for rescue operations. Ballard began his career at the Central Intelligence Agency where he worked cases dealing with terrorism and Latin America. He has spent over a decade working as a Special Agent for the Department of Homeland Security where he was assigned to the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force and deployed as an undercover operative for the U.S. Child Sex Tourism Jump Team. He has worked every type of case imaginable in the fight to dismantle child trafficking rings. Ballard has worked undercover in the United States and in multiple foreign countries to infiltrate child trafficking organizations. In this effort he has successfully dismantled dozens of these organizations and rescued countless children from sex slavery. He is an expert at managing Internet investigations, particularly those dealing with file-share networks where pedophiles and traffickers go to trade in child pornography. He has trained hundreds of law enforcement officers at home and abroad in best practices to liberate children from sex slavery.

Ballard has been featured on many national news outlets to discuss his efforts to combat child trafficking. He has appeared on Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace, The Meredith Vieira Show, CBS Nightly News, ABC Nightline, and CNN Headline News, MSNBC, The Glenn Beck Program, as well as many local news shows.

Ballard is the best-selling author of The Covenant: One Nation Under God and is the author of the sequel to that work, The Covenant, Lincoln, and The War. He has taught American and International Politics courses at Imperial Valley College, San Diego State University and American Heritage School. He has been featured regularly on both local and national TV and radio programs to discuss American history and politics and the role America has played in defending liberty at home and abroad. He has often commented on how his academic work in American history has provided him the inspiration and motivation to rescue children--to carry on the American tradition of liberating the captive. He recently received the distinguished George Washington Honor Medal from the Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge.

After serving a church mission to Chile, Ballard graduated Cum Laude with a BA in Spanish and Political Science from Brigham Young University. He went on to graduate Summa Cum Laude with an MA in International Politics from the Monterey Institute of International Studies.


Ed Smart, Program Director, Rehab & Prevention

Child safety advocate and President of the Surviving Parents Coalition, Ed Smart is an internationally recognized advocate for children's safety with particular focus on prevention, protecting children from “abduction, bullying, abuse and sexual assault.” His advocacy began as a result of the abduction and miraculous return of his daughter Elizabeth from their Utah home in 2002. Elizabeth's abduction motivated him to advocate for change in the safety of our children and families.

Since beginning his fight for children, Ed along with other children’s safety advocates tirelessly and successfully lobbied Congress and the Senate seeking passage of the National Amber Alert plan, the Adam Walsh Act, The Protect our children Act of 2008 and currently working cooperatively with other organizations on state felony arrestee DNA legislation.

He believes that “It is more important than ever to empower our children to know they have choices to options and to remove their fears and feel safer in their world today.” He is currently program director of rehabilitation and prevention for Operation Underground Railroad OUR.

Ed received his Masters Degree in Business Administration, specializing in Urban Planning as well as his Bachelor Degree in Finance from George Washington University. He and his wife Lois are parents of six children and currently reside in Salt Lake City.

A few achievements