Category Archives: Minnesota

ICON CEO Elijah Shaw Talks Executives & International Travel Security

The Star Tribune Business Section ask ICON Services Corporation CEO, Elijah Shaw about his views on Executive Protection and International Security.

Take in to account a security training course Perth for excellence in this matter.

Q What risks do corporate executives and the rich face?

A Domestically, they face the same challenges everyone faces but they are in a higher-income bracket and have the resources to help mitigate those risks. Just going to Times Square in New York City to watch the New Year’s Eve ball drop includes the potential of terrorism or even a stick-up robbery. We offer suggestions on how to mitigate that risk. Whether it’s a high net-worth individual or a corporate executive, they are a commodity that needs to be protected. We try to illustrate the potential risks.

Q What about their families?

A In this information age and with the rise of social media, your movements can be tracked. Executives are told not to have a Facebook page but that seldom gets passed along to the family. So you have your 16-year-old daughter telling her friends on Facebook that the family is poolside in Cabo and on its way to Disney World and that information is out there. We have to think like bad guys. The motive could be kidnapping. You don’t want to smother a client with too much information. But you want to illustrate what can happen.

Find the full article in the Business Section of the Star Tribune by clicking HERE.

5 Tips to Begin Executive Protection Training


Today marks Day 1 of the October 2011 ICON Celebrity & VIP Executive Protection Course.  By all accounts we have a great group of men and women who are either entering the industry for the first time, or engaged in continuing training to “sharpen the tools in their toolbox”.  Knowing some of the newcomers found us by doing online research, I thought it might be a good idea to put some tips out for future attendees of our Executive Protection courses.

1.  Find a course that doesn’t teach “theory” but rather real world applications.  there are many out there if you do your research.  Bodyguard Careers Top Executive Protection Schools book is a great place to start.

2.  Come prepared to work.  Take a look at the materials required to take the course and ask questions prior to attending of what is suggested that you bring.  Pack a “Go Bag” with extra stuff, just like in the real world, it’s better to be over prepared than under.

3.  Ask questions.  For two reasons, one, most instructors don’t like to do ALL the talking.  More importantly, you paid your hard earned money and invested your time to attend, get the maximum out of it by asking everything you want to know.  If it’s too much or off topic, a quality instructor will reel you in.

4. Use being at the training also as an opportunity to network.  Any class that has over 2 people in it is a great opportunity to network.  Think about it, you are training shoulder to shoulder with someone who might get a call for some business in your part of the world.  Wouldn’t it be great if he had your number?

5.  Check your ego at the door.  Our profession contains the Alpha Male Trait, it comes with the job.  But even if you are ex CIA, FBI, United States Secret Service, 007, Borne Identity, Man on FIre, there is still something you can learn from others.  However, in order to do that you have to come in with an open mind.


For more information on the ICON Bodyguard Training Classes, click HERE.


Executive Protection Course Round Up

ICON is proud to announce the successful completion of our January 5-day ICON Celebrity & VIP Protection Course!  Thank you to the 14 students that made it to the end, giving their time, dedication and hard earned dollars to attend.  (Not to mention the fact that all did their due diligence and knew they were talking a course in Minnesota, in January! –extra kudos goes for that fact alone.)

Once again the attendees came from various countries (Canada, Australia), ages, colors & genders (thank you to the 3 ladies in attendance), to meet in an environment that leveled the playing field.   By the time the course wrapped, everyone –instructors included — were tired, but as the motto goes:  Train hard, Win easy.

Next course, March 23-27, 2011.  To sign up for future classes, click HERE.

“I recognized the enormous benefits in training internationally with like minded professionals in our field.  Having instructors and presenters that actively work within the industry and who are willing to share their wealth of practical information, transposed to world class training that was both interesting & informative, with a focus on the real aspects of the work.  I will not hesitate to recommend the course to my friends and colleagues in the industry.”  ~ Chris Feretopoulos from Melbourne, Australia on why he choose to attend the course.

Protecting the Principal

Around the World in 30 Days

From China to the DNC to the RNC to the NFL Kick-off to LA to the Obama/McCain Service Forum in NYC.  It’s been a crazy 30 days.  Thanks to everyone at ICON that kept the plates spinning to make the assignments a success, and keeping all the clients happy. 

Now back to the moutain of paperwork that’s accumulated.  uggh.</p

Icon CEO, Elijah Shaw Featured in St. Paul Pioneer Press


The St. Paul Pioneer Press recently conducted a profile piece on me in their Business Section entitled The Other Corporate Securities. The focus of the story was to illustrate the complexities (and hurdles) of operating in both the Celebrity Bodyguard and Corporate Protection markets:

“Elijah Shaw has been preparing for the Republican National Convention for about a year. The big event is a vehicle for connecting his small business to some of the largest Fortune 500 companies — meaning more business for him.

The security and investigations company owner’s pitch: Companies need to start thinking about security now, because if they wait before locking something in, the prices at other companies will go up and the quality of services down.

Shaw persuaded seven of these companies to use his St. Paul-based firm to secure their dinner parties, cocktail parties and individual events during the convention and to vet the support staff hired for the events to avoid unpleasant discoveries at a point when there’s no turning back.

“If you’re hosting a Republican who is big on border patrol,” he said. “You don’t want to find out that half of your cook staff are illegal immigrants.”

To read the full article click HERE.

Elijah Shaw Featured in Black Enterprise Magazine

Black Enterprise did a feature on yours truly regarding the tactics and challenges I used to build the company.  

“It’s definitely a balancing act,” says Elijah Shaw about running Icon Services Corporation. As President and CEO of the St. Paul, Minnesota-based full service, security and investigative agency, specializing in executive and VIP protection, Shaw knows a thing or two about creating a multimillion-dollar company. Here, the 34-year-old offers strategies for taking your business to the next level.

Plan B with A. Before he started Icon Services, Shaw knew he wanted a corporate structure that would also generate revenue without his direct involvement. For example, one of Icon Services’ biggest clients is Ford Motor Company, which uses Icon Services to handle background checks. “If I’m going to be in this high-risk industry, I was at least going to have a backup plan in place,” he says.

Think unconventionally.Shaw encourages entrepreneurs to look outside the box. “Just because everybody’s doing everything the same way, does not mean you have to as well. “Approach things a little bit differently,” encourages Shaw. “You don’t have to recreate the wheel, but just take a look at what people in other industries are doing and ask yourself: How can I apply it to whatever my business plan is?”

Click on the above text For more of the online segment.  For the full piece check out the March 2008 issue of Black Enterprise Magazine on newsstands now. 


ICON CEO, Elijah Shaw Interviewed on security for the 2008 RNC

From an interview conducted earlier this year with KSTP News regarding security concerns raised by the upcoming 2008 Republican National Convention. The RNC will be held this year in St. Paul, Minnesota which is incidentally national headquarters of Icon Services Corporation. (But in the interest of bipartisanship, we’ll be at the DNC in Denver as well.)


 45 min interview to a 120 second sound bite.  Welcome to the information age.

For more dedicated information on the two events visit and

Elijah Shaw Profiled In Meeting And Events Magazine

Elijah Shaw

I was recently profiled in the December issue of Minnesota Meeting & Events Magazine, whos primary audience is planners and decision makers who bring major events into the state.   As many may be aware,  Minnesota is hosting the 2008 Republican National Convention and my team and I will be providing a variety of security and investigative services.   

 The article, entitled In Good Hands, delivers quick sound bites on the past major events i’ve coordinated security for, my advice for event planners and some of the major projects my agency has coming up in ’08. 

Click here to read the article.

The Importance of Advance Work For the Bodyguard


Industry vet Harlan Austin of Bodyguard Careers wrote an excellent piece on the importance of the Executive Protection specialist doing advance work.  The article was inspired by the recent discovery by Kid Rock’s bodyguard of a hidden camera in his clients dressing room during a recent concert appearance. 

“As someone who has worked for years with entertainers, I cannot express enough how important it is to be diligent conducting advance work. It will not only protect the client, but help you to keep your job! I’m not going to lie–it’s not exactly the most interesting or exciting aspect of working as a bodyguard, but it can make everything go smoothly.”

Please click on the link for the full article.