I created defense coaching because I have witnessed first hand what human beings are capable of and understand the current day and emerging threat environment we all face on a day to day basis. Law enforcement, the military and governments around the world can only provide security for a nation to a limited degree.

The fact is that though they do their absolute best, they are restricted by knowledge, awareness, politics and “red tape.” Now adding to their enormous tasks, they have to be “aware” of a situation or danger to respond and even then, there are response times.

history of defense coaching 1The time from which they are notified there is a crime or critical incident and the time they arrive on scene.

In most cases, though they try their hardest, you are more often than not going to have to fend for yourself whether you are a company or a person.

Now aside from these facts and the actual and evolving threats we all face on a day to day basis, what really changed my thinking and caused a true paradigm shift was while I was out and about on some much needed R&R.

My team and I had just returned from a mission where we had repatriated a businessman with his family after having been kidnapped and held for several months.

The mission was riddled with a series of questionable pieces of Intel as the kidnappers continually moved the hostage from one jungle internment camp to another, while utilizing the remote terrain to hide and evade detection.

In the end, we recovered the package and being that we were all a little on edge, took some much needed R&R in a small village about four klicks from the ocean.

A couple of nights in that village and everything was starting to calm down. I was out alone one night after dark walking towards the central part of the town and I had to cross a small bridge over a swiftly flowing river.

As I approached the bridge, I heard angry voices coming from somewhere in front of me. Being curious, I walked a bit faster and after clearing an elevation in the bridge I saw six men furiously kicking and punching a young man.

As I began to approach the gang, they suddenly became aware of my presence, focusing their tough guy attitude toward me, cursing in their native dialect. I slowly closed the distance face solemn, but expressionless never speaking a single word as I came to stand five feet in front of them.history of defense coaching 2

I had disrupted their mission, which was obviously to beat this young man to death.

After a little intense thought provoking eye contact with them they quickly disbanded and ran in different directions. At the time, I was wondering if it could have been my new deodorant?

I quickly gathered up the young man as it was an emerging nation, there was no choice here other than picking him up and physically bringing him to get medical attention or leaving him laying there bleeding and broken. The “hospital” was only about 2 kilometers and so I flagged down a motorcycle with a sidecar and made it to the hospital quickly.

After more than an hour, a man in a white coat, presumably a doctor, came over to me to inform me that the young man had suffered numerous cuts, bruises, broken ribs and several hematomas, but would be fine in a few weeks’ time.

I proceeded to walk down a dingy corridor and entered the young man’s room. He thanked me and after a little conversation, he gave me his local address.

The next day I had to do some traveling, but made a mental note to look in on him when I returned. About a week later I stopped by his house early in the morning and found him on the front porch drinking a cup of coffee.

We conversed for about an hour discussing local politics, his goals in life and the current economic plight of his country. I knew full well within the first few minutes of our conversation that this young man had great potential.

The problem was of course that like so many people around the world, his family was unable to afford the education he dreamt of. Understanding the limitations and resources I had, and not wanting him to succumb to a life of hardship and more beatings, I made it my mission to train this young man in the tradecraft that I knew, which was combat and security.

This was new territory for my team and me. This was a civilian, but I was determined to turn this young man into an operator. After a couple years, an operator is what he became! He learned to funnel his anger from that one event into a drive that inspired him to be something greater and better than he ever would have thought possible.

He learned about situational awareness, principles of security, kidnapping, kidnap prevention, travel security, how to deal with expected and unexpected challenges, principles of protection and defense, how to become a human lie detector, covert surveillance, human performance, leadership and much more.

During the course of this evolution, we brought numerous others from all backgrounds into the same program successfully including businesses, private citizens and law enforcement personnel.

Though I did not realize it at the time, this became the boilerplate for Defense Coaching, and it did not fully hit home until I was on a very long flight and I thought, “in principle why can’t we train and teach people and companies everywhere to be “defense coaches”? Crime and terrorism know no boundaries and this helps put people in control of their safety.

There are so many applications and solutions that a defense coach could tackle to assist people and organizations to help create a culture of safety and security, while at the same time earn for those valuable services.

This was the birth of Defense Coaching.

Since then, defense coaches have assisted numerous organizations, businesses and people successfully around the world with everything from developing duty of care, safety and travel risk management programs to teaching people and families personal security and situational awareness and how to mitigate danger and threats from an active shooter, home invasion, terrorism and while on vacation or business travel.