After being away on an extended assignment, I learned I was called out by a few respected industry friends for the ALS “Ice Bucket Challenge”. The first thing I did was educate myself more on the actual condition, a medical disease that could affect anyone (including members of the Executive Protection community!)
Once again I have been fortunate enough to have a speaking roster of contemporary individualsinvolved in the Executive Protection craft on hand to deliver some great topics at this invitation only gathering.
To learn more about the 2nd Annual Social Summit held January 25 & 26, 2014 click HERE.
While it might look like a potential traffic jam waiting to happen, every vehicle in the motorcade serves a distinct purpose. The amount of resources dedicated to moving the President of the United States from place to place by the Secret Service is staggering. With that said, the security motorcade is not unique to just diplomatic arenas. You will find scaled down versions in almost every other area of Executive Protection. The unfortunate reality is that the majority of attacks occur in and around the vehicle so the rings of protection have to extend beyond just arms length.
The ICON Celebrity and VIP Protection Training Course is truly an essential course for anyone wanting to enter the industry of Executive Protection. A truly engaging program, from Day One, Elijah Shaw immerses his trainees in understanding the world of celebrity protection.
Through a combination of lecture, followed by hands-on drills, his teaching style is well-absorbed by
anyone willing to learn. Mr. Shaw and his staff present the course with real-world experiences,so trainees know what to expect, what not to do and not to do and more importantly how to prevent threatening situations from occurring and what to do when they do. I decided to take the course because I had an interest in becoming a bodyguard.
After researching for what seemed to be days on end, trying to find a training course that I felt would be most beneficial to me as a beginner. What’s more, the ICON course was the one of the few courses I’d seen that openly advertised and encouraged women to take their course. Although I had already been leaning toward training with ICON, just that small amount of encouragement solidified my decision. I was truly happy in my decision because since my first inquiry for information, I received a prompt response and felt welcomed.
I felt the same welcoming environment throughout the course. The course is set up to give you the essentials needed to get started in the industry. As I stated before, the course is completely immersive and drills into you the main objective: protecting the principle. The course trains you to constantly think critically about your situation and environment and how to be proactive. It trains you on how protecting isn’t always matching or one-upping force, which particularly hit home and was a challenge for me, coming from previous law enforcement training and working in private security. Most importantly, it introduces you to the demanding nature of the job and how to remain on your game through mental, physical and emotional fatigue. Remembering, “Mindset is Key.”
Overall, my experience was truly amazing. I would recommend ICON’s Celebrity and VIP Protection course to all men and women looking to get into the industry, as well as currently active protection agents. If you’re looking for real-life, in your face, no fluff training, ICON Services Corporation is where you want to begin. Coming from a law enforcement and private security background, this course instilled in me the true meaning of protection and gave me the foundation on how to build my skills to master the art of protection.
—Bryttani Tyner April 2013 CPC Alumni
To learn more about the ICON Academy Executive Protection Course, click HERE.
Elijah Shaw of ICON Executive Protection & Harlan Austin of BodyguardCareers.com carved some time out of a busy work schedule to watch a private screening of Olympus Has Fallen, the new film from the Director of Training Day. What’s the verdict? Check out the 1-minute review on the video then meet me back here.
I can sum it up like this… The movie Die Hard, but this time in the White House. Only problem is, Die Hard did it better, much better. I tried hard to look at it like JUST A MOVIE, however, it was pretty hard to put aside the fact that it makes the United States Secret Service, DC Law Enforcement, The Capital Police, The Military –including the US Special Forces, all look like 3rd graders playing laser tag. Plus there were plot holes wide enough to drive a truck into. Wait, they did drive a truck into it. Uggh. Oh, and the Plane crashing and the Washington Monument collapsing “World Trade Tower-Style”… Uggh.
The ICON Executive Protection Academy is happy to announce that by all accounts our first training course of 2013 was a success. As previous alumni of the program will tell you, each class we try and introduce something different into our core curriculum, and i’m happy to say the tradition continued. In keeping with our promise to deliver contemporary training by instructors that don’t teach “theory” but are actively involved on a full time basis in the art of Executive Protection, working the craft day in and day, out around the world.
It’s also no secret that training is expensive and the market is competitive. To assist with that we have developed a pioneering special finance department which offers the opportunity for installment payments as well as full scholarships. Click HERE to learn more.
For more information on the programs click HERE. **Also, just ask and we’ll put you in touch with previous graduates of the program. Ask about their experiences while at the class, and more importantly, if the program assisted them professionally upon completion.
So remember the guy that tried to Kiss Will Smith in the mouth last summer?
Same guy who crashed the stage during Adele’s acceptance speech Sunday. (He also snuck into the Grammy’s and got a 2nd row camera seat before making his way on stage besides JLo and Pitbull). CLICK HERE TO VIEW.
How did I know this before the news even broke to the national media? Because I kept a file on the guy that I reviewed before heading to the Ukraine with a client last year.
Ask yourself, what if the guy tried to plant a kiss on one of the entertainers that were on the stage? Would anyone (outside of the artist) have been able to prevent that? This is why I believe the job is so much more than just standing around waiting for something to happen and then reacting.
This particular incident is an excellent example of why the protective agent’s role has to include Protective Intelligence and is still very necessary even with the presence of event security. The mantra of Celebrity Protection and Executive Protection is to “Protect the Client from Harm”, that means protecting their physical well being AND their image.
For the past several months i’d been fairly immersed in negotiating, researching, planning, and finally, executing an assignment that was challenging, rewarding, and in many ways, “historic”. Historic because of my participation in both the Republican and Democratic National Conventions at a pivotal time in our nation, but also because I had the opportunity to involve several of the former ICON Academy students in the assignment. For the past 17 days, our agents had the opportunity to interact with all levels of local, state and federal law enforcement, from the United States Secret Service on down. The mix of Politicians, Celebrities, Corporate Higher Up’s and Delegates coexisted with massive crowds, inclimate weather and protesters. The senior Protectors took those with less experience under their wings, and illustrated by words and actions, that every post was an important one, and everyone (including me) got (re)familiar with that EP staple, “Halls & Walls”. In the end, while sore feet, and bags under the eyes were prevalent, the words of thanks and admiration for the work done personally made by the client made it all worth it.
Of course I do not want to make it seem that this was all brand new, in 2008, ICON Services Corporation also played a significant protection role for clients for both the DNC and RNC, and if the positive feedback was any indication, once again be lacing up the shoes and adding the lapel pin four years from now.
Larry Snow is a guy who moves behind the scenes in the Executive Protection community. He has long ties to the industry, and as an expert in the field of Social Media, has a unique outlook– one that I share on a variety of topics. He recently interviewed me regarding the Bodyguard Industry, with a recurring theme of the role mentorship plays. *The above photo includes me and one of my mentors, Tony Scotti , a true gentleman that has offered me sound advice since our initial meeting.
One of the things we laughed about was the challenge to get the interview conducted due to my crazy schedule. In fact, while you don’t see the video that accompanied this podcast, I was surrounded by half packed bags, and immediately after the interview, threw in the rest of my clothes, made a mad dash to the airport, and boarded a 18 hour flight to the other side of the world.
If you’ve got a few minutes on the way to the range (or on the treadmill) I encourage you to give it a listen.