Brennan Smith

Brennan Smith has dedicated his life to generating government, corporate, and community leaders who take responsibility for their people, their profits, and their planet. He is the founder of The Inspired Action Network, a Virginia-based consulting firm focused on leadership development.

Brennan opened ESCAPE Newport News as an extension of his commitment to developing leaders through fun, engaging experiences that cause participants to face themselves and their old limitations in ways that expose new abilities and perspectives.


“Day after day I get to witness government and corporate teams become high-performing, mission-driven leaders through our work together. But one of my greatest joys here has been to watch our own ESCAPE team members engage and become co-creators of our future. Through their unrelenting commitment, and our shared passion for unlocking people’s potential, every guest who walks through our doors discovers something new about themselves -- usually, that they’re a genius.”

Katy James

Katherine James is the Business Strategist and Community Director for ESCAPE Newport News. Her work at ESCAPE includes office management; collaborating with community charities and organizations; and developing and implementing business strategies. Katherine strongly believes that a business is only as strong as the surrounding community, and that no business’ strategy is viable without first investing in their community. Her passion for cultivating personal and communal development through challenging perceived capabilities makes Katherine a perfect fit for ESCAPE.


"I love my job because I never get bored.  Every day it's something new. If I hosted a corporate event last week, I'm probably going to host a booth at an elementary school or a charity event this week. If worked on spread sheets and attended meetings today, chances are I'll need to create a puzzle, work on a new room, or jump in and help host a birthday party in full costume tomorrow. ESCAPE Newport News appeals to every facet of my personality. I get to let the little kid in me create and play, while feeling like I'm making a difference in the community and supporting the people I work with."

Journey Haven

Journey is the Event Designer and Coordinator for ESCAPE Newport News and loves building relationships with clients to create memorable events. From birthdays and showers, to networking and beyond, she embraces all that life has to offer through parties and celebrations. Journey is a senior at Christopher Newport University studying Communication and Leadership Studies. Her passion for event planning is cultivated by her love of interior design, organization, planning, and creativity. After graduation, she plans on starting her own event planning company for weddings, parties, and galas.


I love everything about my job; from the welcoming coworkers (we call them family here), to the positive atmosphere, ESCAPE is truly a place where you can leave whatever is holding you back at the door. Better yet, bring it inside with you and you will be embraced and cared for every step of the way. The moment you step into ESCAPE Newport News, you become a part of our ever-expanding family. Welcome!

Davis Reagan

Davis Reagan is a rising senior at Christopher Newport University studying Accounting with a minor in Leadership Studies. He has been with ESCAPE Newport News since the start of 2018, and found interest in ESCAPE because it provided real life opportunities to expand leadership and management competence. After college, Davis will move on to accounting in the public sector. We are very happy to have him in our family.

When asked what sage advice he would provide to those new to the ESCAPE scene, he offered, "Don't be discouraged when you get stumped, you will get through the room; just keep on chuggin'."


“There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.” 
― Ernest Hemingway