Michael Kurcina-Founder Mike is just an average guy trying not to settle for an average life, making no excuses for his failures and not satisfied with his small successes. Mike’s love of fitness, the military, survival and the outdoors began when he was a kid. He became a Marine but would never fulfill his dream of serving as a career Infantryman. Mike was medically separated. Upon entering civilian life he eventually ran a successful retail business with his business partners but always felt like something was missing inside.
19 years after his first military separation, Mike decided to sell his shop and left everything behind. Getting himself medically cleared gave him a second chance and he enlisted in the United States Army; whereupon he was the oldest man and lowest ranking person in his company. After serving honorably he departed the military and currently provides his expertise as a security adviser.
He chooses to spend all of his free time learning and teaching others about the things he knows. 38 + years as a distance and ultra-distance runner, 12 years doing Olympic lifting. He collects information on ancient history, WW I history, and any survival related material.
Through his own hardships and frustration he decided to create a site to share his knowledge. He keeps meeting others who want to do the same. Out of this came Spotter Up, a website to put out information to help guide those who want to live life on their terms. He credits his early military indoc as the one thing that kept him disciplined through the many years. Michael Kurcina subscribes to the Spotter Up way of life. “I will either find a way or I will make one”.
REGULAR GUEST CONTRIBUTORS
Not all of our contributors are Special Operations members. Neither do they have to constantly remind people of what they accomplished. The journey never ends and we never have to talk about our past conquests or failures but choose to in order to serve others. The road is ahead. Walk it, learn and share with others who know less.
Jay joined the Marine Corps in 2008 as an infantryman, specifically a machine gunner. In 2009 he deployed to Marjah, Afghanistan serving as a machinegun team leader with 3rd Platoon, Alpha Co., 1st Battalion 6th Marines. His career would continue with the same unit throughout deployments to Sangin and Kajaki, Afghanistan and the 22nd MEU. Jay is an active duty Marine serving as a senior enlisted instructor at The Basic School at Marine Corps Base Quantico. He currently serves as a primary instructor for the infantry platoon tactics package. Jay is currently seeking his degree in sport science and will transfer to George Mason in 2017.
Dr. Stephen Band Dr. Stephen R. Band entered on duty as a special agent of the FBI on December, 1983 and retired from the FBI on July 01, 2005. His 22-year career with the Bureau focused on counterintelligence, counter terrorism, undercover, and behavioral science operations.
He served as chief of the FBI’s famous Behavioral Science Unit and was instrumental in creating and leading the FBI’s Undercover [UC] Safeguard Unit (USU). USU serves to monitor the wellness and readiness of law enforcement officers engaged in UC operations to include crimes against children in cyberspace via the Innocent Image Task Force.
Dr. Band is presently a consultant supporting law enforcement and intelligence agencies. He is also a graduate of the New Jersey State Police Academy – 140th municipal class, and served his local community as a police officer during the 1970s. His doctoral degree was earned at Fordham University, New York City in counseling psychology, and he was a post-doctoral fellow of forensic psychology at Indiana University-School of Medicine.
Dr. Band is a fellow of the American Psychological Association (APA), a Clinical Fellow of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapists, and was a faculty member of the FBI National Academy (NA). Click on the BIS icon to access his page.
He formed and coordinates Fairfax County, VA Police Department’s (FCPD’s) Incident Support Service’s Behavioral on-call Team (BOT). BOT is composed of independent licensed psychologists with security clearances. BOT members are positioned to operate as a cohesive group or individually in response to highly complex challenges.
Dr. Stephen Band subscribes to the Spotter Up way of life. “I will either find a way or I will make one”.
Matt Bray Matt started his military career in the Navy as an Aviation Electrician. During that those eight years he deployed in support of Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm and later in support of operations in Bosnia. After graduating from Old Dominion University he was commissioned in the Army Corps of Engineers and soon transitioned into Psychological Operations. He deployed in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom, and did rescue and recovery operations in Haiti. He recently retired after serving a total of 22 years in the military.
He got started in knife making as a “side effect” – if you will – of a wood carving class he took at a Woodcraft store. The instructor showed the class a collection of carving knives that he had fashioned from recycled straight razors. Matt thought that was interesting and thought he could do the same thing. The first knife he made was a camp knife and it was ground to shape using the stock removal method. It took him over a week to do it since he did not have the luxury of a fancy belt grinder. All he had was a couple of files, some patience and a LOT of elbow grease. He finished it, heat-treated it according to manufacturer’s specifications and fashioned a sheath out of some leather remnants. He learned an incredible amount and was hooked. Matt Bray subscribes to the Spotter Up way of life. “I will either find a way or I will make one”.
Rick Burrell is a multi-skilled professional and operational manager with over 28 yrs of combined military and federal service in the US Navy Seal Teams (BUD/s Class #173).
Brandon DeChiara Currently enlisted in the United States Marine Corps Reserve, stationed at 4th CAG in Hialeah Florida as an 0352, Anti-Tank Missile Man, 0532, Civil Affairs Specialist, and a 0933 Combat Marksmanship Coach. He shoots competitively on the side; usually USPSA.
Currently working at Nexus Shooting Davie Florida as a firearms instructor and salesman. Wanting to branch out and help educate and train others in all matters of firearm self-defense.
Jon Dufresne Jon Dufresne is a former US Army Ranger. He deployed multiple times with the 3rd Battalion 75th Ranger Regiment to the Middle East in a variety of capacities. He is experienced in counter terrorism tactics, reconnaissance, Airborne operations and is a certified Emergency Medical Technician. His post military experiences include executive protection and various firearms and tactics training He is currently pursuing a degree in Business Management.
Kurt Delia Mr. Delia is the President of Delia Tactical International. He is a 23 year Law Enforcement officer, former S.W.A.T. team leader and master breacher. Delia was assigned to a Special Weapons and Tactics team for 18 years with 20 years of street patrol experience, as well as previous covert investigative duties and international security assignments. Mr. Delia instructs SWAT tactics, police close counter measures, lethal force combatives, weapons, armored vehicle operations and tactical breaching.
He has over 25 years in mixed martial arts and weapon disciplines and has instructed police, security, and SOF military personnel for over 20 years. He has been an instructor and guest speaker for various units and organizations throughout the world including the United States Army Special Forces, S.W.A.T. Units, Private Security Companies and Police Departments.
Jim Dexter Jim Dexter is a 13 year active Illinois Law Enforcement Officer who spent 10 years in the volunteer fire service and currently serves as a patrol officer assigned to a multi-jurisdictional SWAT team. He is an FBI certified Firearms Instructor and American Safety and Health Institute Emergency Medical Responder Instructor. Jim is a State of Illinois Basic SWAT, FBI Pistol Instructor and Red Dot Pistol Instructor, an Illinois Tactical Officers Association Tourniquet and Bandage Instructor, Rescue Task Force Instructor, and Ballistic Shield Instructor as well as a graduate of the Tactical Combat Casualty Care- Medical Provider course. Jim operates Tactically Sound Training Center, LLC providing medical and firearms instruction.
Having served with the US Army in Iraq Jim brings both tactical and medical experience to law enforcement and citizens alike as a Stop The Bleed Instructor and Tactical Emergency Combat Care Instructor. His prior employment with the Federal Air Marshal Service has placed him in locations around the world where preparation and possession of a “sound” skill-set was crucial. As a former Director of Emergency Management Jim retains skills in emergency planning, exercise planning and facility planning. Jim has extensive end user experience and training in Red Dot Sight (RDS) equipped pistols and has assisted multiple police departments nationwide in the approval and implementation of RDS pistols. Tactically Sound Training Center, LLC is the only entity with red dot pistol training approved by the Illinois Law Enforcement Training and Standards Board. When not patrolling or teaching for his company he can occasionally be found working as an Assistant Instructor for Modern Samurai Project, LLC. A graduate of Western Illinois University, Jim also holds a Masters of Arts in Criminal Justice from American Military University. Jim currently sits on the Board of Directors for the Illinois Tactical Officers Association.
SgtMaj USMC Retired
Biography of David K. Devaney SgtMaj USMC Retired
Retired US Marine.
Writer at SpotterUp.com.
David’s published work:
Devaney, D.K. (2007). Surviving combat: Mentally and physically (3rd edition). 29 Palms, CA: USMC.
Devaney, D.K. (2015). They Were Heroes: A Sergeant Major’s Tribute to Combat Marines of Iraq and Afghanistan. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press.
Devaney, D.K. (2011) Enough Talk of Suicide, Already! Proceedings Magazine.
Devaney, D.K. (2011) Can PTSD Be Prevented Through Education? Proceedings Magazine.
Devaney, D.K. (2012) PTSD Is Not Cancer. The Marine Corps Gazette.
Devaney, D.K. (2012) Women in Combat Arms Units. The Marine Corps Gazette
Derek Dutton Dutton is an avid adventurer, writer, endurance athlete, firearms instructor and bearded hooligan. His experience in the special operations community has afforded him a unique perspective on combat. He energetically shares the physical/ psychological lessons he has taken from the field of battle, from within the fight as well as after, as an instructor and adventurer/writer. Multiple deployments with 3rd Ranger battalion 75th Ranger Regiment and multiple combat related injuries ultimately led to Derek’s, early, medical retirement from the Army.
However, it has not quenched his spirit of perseverance, or diluted his taste for meeting life’s challenges head on. Someone who takes the Ranger Creed seriously “Never Shall I leave a fallen comrade”, Derek is giving back to wounded warriors who are working through their own transition to civilian life through an organization he has spear headed: Ranger Smash Extreme Endurance. RSEE is a team of wounded warriors whose mission is twofold:
1: Enable: veterans by mitigating the financial burden inherent of extreme sports; veterans will therefore have the opportunity to explore boundaries they never thought possible
2: Empower: veterans through camaraderie of the warrior spirit, and create a resource hub for athletes to achieve the next level of their athletic endeavors through our network of sports professionals and mentors.
Learn more about him, or follow them at www.RangerSmash.com
Bill Farmer Bill Farmer is a 12 year law enforcement veteran He is a defensive tactics, tactical driving and active shooter instructor. Bill has worked in school resource, violent crimes, plain clothes and patrol assignments. Bill is an avid outdoorsman, backpacker, hunter and shooter.
Fred Fusco Fred is a 20-year veteran of the Army Special Operations Command and the owner of Storm Tactical Consulting, Fred served as a Special Forces Medic for a number of years before trying out and getting selected to serve as an operator in a Special Missions Unit. Over a long career, Fred has served as an Assaulter, Breacher, Medic, Sniper, Human Intel Specialist, and finishing up as a Dog Handler. Fred’s background 20 years of service as an 18 Delta Green Beret Medic, and later as an operator in the Army’s Special Missions Unit.
Mike Green 15 years in Special Forces, Master class shooter in USPSA Production Division and Director of Training at Green-Ops.
Chris Hill Chris is a firearms industry professional. He is currently the senior instructor in South Florida’s only five star range and also supervises the training program. He has trained thousands of new and seasoned shooters. Chris served as a Marine infantry rifleman deploying to Afghanistan and Jordan. Chris is passionate about shooting and everything that can make one better at it from both a training and equipment perspective. He shoots competitively weekly and is constantly seeking additional firearms training. He also likes dogs, a lot.
David Holzinger Holzinger has been on the job since 1990. His primary assignment is the patrol division where he has served as a Field Training Officer.
He began his SWAT duties in 2000. Since then he has served as an entry operator, ballistic shield operator and sniper. He is currently the Sniper Team Leader with the South Suburban Emergency Response Team (SSERT) a multi – jurisdictional SWAT that covers over 30 suburban towns on the south side of Chicago, Illinois.
Holzinger is a firearms instructor, Taser instructor and armor for his department. He is certified as a Master Firearms Instructor through the University of Illinois, Police Training Institute. He has attended numerous firearms instructor courses to include: pistol, shotgun, semi auto rifle, SMG, police sniper instructor as well as various NRA Instructor courses.
Frank H Frank H is a current sworn police officer, member of the Special Response Team, and certified Tactical Medical Operator. Additionally, he has served 13 years in the US Army, 7 of those years on active duty in Special Operations. He has multiple combat deployments and has served in a variety of roles from the team to detachment level. He has received advanced training in tactics, combatives, medical care, apprehension avoidance, high risk driving, and numerous other disciplines. He holds over a dozen FEMA and DHS certifications and is a certified Bleeding Control instructor. He is a Christian, a husband, and a father who in his spare time enjoys making memories with his family, spending time in the outdoors, and helping others.
Andy Huynh grew up in Orange County, California and is a US Army veteran of nearly a decade in service. Andy is currently a vertebrate paleontologist and is in pursuit of his Ph.D. Andy is also a museum educator at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles and the George C. Page Museum (La Brea Tar Pits). Andy’s primary research is the study of Allosauridae – a family of medium to large bipedal, carnivorous allosauroid neotheropod dinosaurs from the Upper Jurassic. In his free time, Andy trains local law enforcement agencies in marksmanship and tactics. Andy’s background outside of the military and paleontology includes federal contracting, wildlife conservation and humanitarian work. Andy has instructed rangers of the Kenya Wildlife Service and aided children in areas of conflict under UNICEF. To this day, Andy continues to combat global fossil crime as well as the ivory trade.
Sam James* Sam James has been in federal law enforcement for 4 years. During his brief time with his agency he was tasked to play an intricate role in the successful organization of a response team. His prior experience came from 9 years of local law enforcement working in one of the top five most dangerous cities in America. Of those years, 7 were spent on a large city SWAT Team, 2 years in Street Crimes and he spent additional hours working DUI.
Jay has over 200 tactical missions under his belt, and over 400 drug and warrant arrests. During his time with SWAT he received several instructor certifications to include General Instructor, Firearms, Basic Tactics and Rappel Master/Instructor. Throughout his law enforcement career he attended and successfully completed 3 law enforcement training academies, 3 different Dignitary/Executive/HRE Protection courses, 2 Basic SWAT courses and several other advance courses, which all included hand to hand assault/counter-assault and advanced driving. ‘Jay’ has also acted as a team leader for motorcade movements while overseas in hostile territory. He is a top shot with pistol and rifle. ‘Jay’ enjoys instructing, riding motorcycles, a nice cigar, spending time with his family and is always thinking “What’s Next?”
Jay subscribes to the Spotter Up way of life. “I will either find a way or I will make one”.
Ben Johnson Ben Johnson spent six years as a USMC Machine Gunner. He deployed three times to Afghanistan as a gunner, team leader, and section leader and left the Marines in 2015. While utilizing the G.I. Bill, he began working at a gun range. It was there he realized how limited his training was. Since then he has applied himself to being a forever student of firearms, while pursuing a B.A. in Business and sharing his knowledge and experience with his wife and newborn son.
Kelly Kurcina Kelly is passionate about sharing her knowledge and experience of. She has been teaching for over 26 years.
Running track & field in high school increased her interest in how the body functions. At the age of 18 she chose to work at a health food store. She has been a committed practitioner of nutrition and fitness ever since. She has taught hundreds of students over the years. She currently teaches Les Mills RPM, Les Mills CXWORX, Pilates, Barre, Yoga, Hiit and more. She is also a certified Personal Trainer and Nutritionist.
Nathaniel Lindsley The grandson of two veterans, Nate found a passion for the military and firearms at a very young age. He is an 8+ year veteran of the US Army Infantry with over 22 months deployed in operational environments. Nate is a student of the gun and of all things based around the employment thereof. Nate is a lifelong shooter, firearms enthusiast, concealed carry advocate, competitive shooter and instructor.
He has a passion for gaining and sharing knowledge as well as challenging people to think critically about their approach to techniques and tactics. Nate is voracious reader and consummate researcher. He has a bachelor’s degree in History and Political Science. His hobbies include all things related to the gun, studying the human condition, and working out. He enjoys the quiet times when his Belgian Malinois, Kairo, and Dutch Shepherd, Titan, aren’t begging for his attention.
Michael Lake Writer Michael Lake is a Benefactor Life Member of the National Rifle Association and has been actively involved in a variety shooting activities since 1989. In addition to being a certified range safety officer he holds several NRA instructor ratings and armorer certifications. He has received training from the US Army Marksmanship Unit, the US Marine Corps Rifle Team and some of the finest private training facilities in the nation. In 2013 Michael co-founded Adaptive Defense Concepts, a Northwest Ohio-based Training organization. He is currently a contractor for the US Department of Energy and is an accomplished Freemason.
M is a multi-skilled professional with over 34 yrs of combined military and government service. He joined the Marine Corps in 1983, commanding infantry and reconnaissance units at multiple levels and served in a variety of staff positions. He has deployed multiple times to the Pacific and the Middle East to include combat tours in Kuwait, Somalia, Iraq, and Afghanistan in a variety of capacities.
Since retiring from the military M has continued his government service. He is an avid outdoorsman and athlete. He enjoys shooting sports, hiking, hunting, working out (swim, bike, run), and participating in endurance style events like Go-Ruck and Tough-Mudder, which promote camaraderie and teamwork.
He has completed the Infantry Officer Course, US Army Airborne Parachutist Course, US Army Ranger School, US Army Special Forces Combat Diver Qualification Course, US Army Jumpmaster Course, US Army Special Forces Qualification Course, and US Army Airborne Freefall Parachutist Course. He earned the following decorations Combat Action Ribbon, Navy Commendation Medal with Gold Stars and Combat ‘V’, and Meritorious Service Medal. M subscribes to the Spotter Up way of life. “I will either find a way or I will make one”.
Nate Morrison is a former USAF Pararescue team leader and US Army Special Operations Combat Medic. He is the founder of the Pararescue Combatives program and cofounder of the AFSOC Human Performance program. He was a military freefall, mountain warfare and special operations medical instructor. He is recognized world wide as the leading expert on military fitness training and combative human performance.
He has vast experience in teaching a wide variety of special operations skill sets in the private sector to military, law enforcement and other government agencies. He is the founder of RIKR Defence, LTD; specializing in full spectrum soldier and operator development to include human performance optimized equipment and TTPs.
Clayton Pollack. His name is Clayton. He likes long walks on the beach, the way the grass smells after it rains… Oh, sorry, wrong profile. Clay grew up in Wisconsin and joined the Army when he turned 18. He was trained in communication systems at Ft. Gordon, GA, went through Airborne school in Ft. Benning, GA, and was stationed at Ft. Bragg, NC, with 4th Psychological Operations Group.
He served his first tour in Iraq in 05-06, and his second during the Surge from 07-08. When he left active duty, he took a job as a military contractor in VA, and joined the National Guard. He spent his time in the guard with Maryland’s 1-158 Cav LRS-C (Long Range Surveillance Company). His duties in the military included satellite and radio communications, Psychological Operations, and hand to hand combat instructor.
Clay also got married during his time in VA. He and his wife moved back to Wisconsin to start a family, and now have a beautiful 2 ½ year old daughter, and a 9 month old son. He is currently in school to become a nurse, with a long term goal of becoming a PA. He spends his free time playing with his kids, exercising, woodworking, and learning new skills from interesting projects he finds. Clayton subscribes to the Spotter Up way of life. “I will either find a way or I will make one”.
Doug Patteson – Hallwalker. Doug Patteson is a former Case Officer within the National Clandestine Service. He served for a decade on multiple tours overseas against a wide range of targets. Since leaving, he has spent the last several years helping multinational business with finance and strategy.
Alex Popovic Alex served almost 10 years as a Force Reconnaissance Marine and Scout/Sniper. He got out right before 9-11 and was recalled afterwards for OEF in Afghanistan and the Middle East and also the start of OIF.
He recently completed his MBA and is working on attending ASU law school focusing on Intellectual Property law and helping veterans with their VA claims. He has been helping veterans the last several years with his real estate company, Semper Find My Home, for all their real estate needs and giving back his commission to them.
Kevin Quinn is a 24 year Law Enforcement Veteran in Arizona. He is an AZPOST Certified Instructor in Firearms, Patrol Rifle, High Risk Vehicle Stops and Defensive Tactics. Kevin has worked in Patrol, Crime Scene, School Resource Officer and Training. He is his agency Cadet Coordinator, SWAT Team Logistical Support and backup Public Information Officer. Kevin is a frequent instructor for is department in-service training as well as at the Police Academy
Steven Rabinovich Steve Rab is a career cop, who have devoted his life to the service of others. He has been in public service and on the job for some 17 years, holding several specialized assignments, and becoming a law enforcement and emergency medical services instructor. Rab immigrated to the US at the age of 14, with his family, and became committed to serve the country which offered him so much.
He has served as a member of US Coast Guard expeditionary unit, and pursued his interest in Aviation, becoming a 68W and flight medic with the Army. After a short break, he returned to service and reserves, as a fire team member and a medic. He enjoys learning, writing, and doing grunt work, and is focused on helping other vets in need. With a team of local vets and his therapy dog, Rab does a great deal of volunteer work. To further that goal, they started Grunt’s BBQ and Easy Company. A future mobile chow hall, coming tho an AO near you.
Luigge Romanillo Luigge was a USAF Pararescueman for 16 years with over 8 deployments in support of Southern and Northern Watch, Operation Iraqi Freedom and most recently Enduring Freedom. Luigge has over 1000 combat flying hours on multiple airframes and has been awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross with Valor and the Air Medal with Valor for actions in Afghanistan.
In 2006, Luigge attended the American University in Dubai under the William Jefferson Clinton Scholar’s Program. His passions include teaching Combat Medicine and generally developing more efficient methods to everyday tasks. He has provided Combat Casualty Care to specialized units of the US Army, US Air Force, Department of Justice, Department of Energy, Emergency Medical Services, and other Local, State and Federal Law Enforcement Agencies.
Awards and Decorations
- Distinguished Flying Cross with Valor
- Air Medal with Valor
- Combat Action Medal
- Aerial Achievement Medal
- Training and Certifications
- National Registry of Emergency Medical Technician (NREMT) – Paramedic
- Special Tactics Operators’ Advanced Life Support (STOALS)
- US Army Special Operations Combat Medic Course
- Tactical Confined Space and Structural Collapse Rescue Training
- Air Force Pararescue Recovery Apprentice Course
- US Army Special Forces Combat Diver Qualification Course
- US Army Airborne Parachutist Course
- US Army Airborne Freefall Parachutist Course
- Swift Water Rescue Technician
Luigge Romanillo subscribes to the Spotter Up way of life. “I will either find a way or I will make one”. He is the founder of Adaptagear.
AJ Saulls AJ is a veteran and COO of Meridian Systematics, a Virginia based Defense Analytics firm. He regularly supports America’s finest warfighters at home and abroad. When he’s not deployed, Aj is engulfed in Northern Virginia shooting sports as well as being an avid fly angler.
Even though he’s made his living in data analytics, he’s a firm believer that we need to be disconnected and outdoors. Aj is a writer and supports Spotter Up as a knowledge platform for us to become better at what we love.
Joshua Shaw is a professional Intelligence Officer specializing in national security issues. Since 2012, he has completed four deployments to Afghanistan supporting the US Military Counter-Terrorism effort.
Josh has been shooting competitively since 2015, and has shot over 100 matches including USPSA, IDPA, Multi-gun and Steel Challenge. He is currently classified as Master in three equipment divisions of USPSA and IDPA. He has attended ~130 hours of formal firearms training including classes with Tim Herron (Grand Master competitive shooter), Scott Jedlinski (Modern Samurai Project), Ben Dewalt (Onsight Firearms Training), Chuck Pressburg (Presscheck Consulting), John Chapman (Forge Tactical), Justin Dyal and Defense Intelligence Agency Pistol qualification courses.
Josh has held a concealed carry license since 2013 and has experience with multiple carry methods and types of equipment. Mr. Shaw is an editor and regular contributor to Spotter Up Tactical Solutions, specializing in product reviews, shooting and training articles and AARs. He is also a very active member of the Spotter Up shooting team, mainly competing in the Mid Atlantic states (VA/MD/WV/PA/DE).
Josh also is a certified NRA instructor and works part time as a firearms instructor for Green Ops (https://www.green-ops.com)
Jenny Kim Jenny Kim served in the Army with two deployments to Iraq. She was a Customs and Border Protections (CBP) officer working on the border of Mexico in the state of Arizona for five years. Jenny is currently a Federal Immigration Officer with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Jenny started shooting competitively in late 2017 and has shot 50+ USPSA, IDPA and Steel Challenge matches. She competes in Production Division with a CZ Shadow 2 and PCC Division with an Angstad Arms rifle. In 2018 she secured an individual sponsorship with Angstad Arms. Jenny has attended five professional firearms training classes (80 hours) in the last year with Scott Jedlinski (Modern Samurai Project), Matt Olinchuk (Super-Tactical), Tim Herron (Tim Herron Shooting) and Kita Busse (180 Firearms Training). Jenny also volunteers as an assistant instructor for the Explorers program for the Customs and Border Protection, teaching young adults a personal awareness of the criminal justice system through training, practical experiences, competition and other activities.
Brad Shepard Mr. Shepherd is a proven leader with experience and knowledge covering a variety of fields. Obtaining and maintaining his first job on a farm at thirteen, he first began his orientation into the customer service industry. After many years of working in the agricultural and dairy market, Mr. Shepherd joined the United States Army as an Infantryman within the 75th Ranger Regiment. Completing 4 years of extensive training, along with 4 overseas deployments, he received his honorable discharge in 2005. In early 2006 he founded Shepp Enterprises LLC (SE), a private consulting firm for the United States larger government organizations. After multiple deployments, in 2012 Mr. Shepherd undertook the position as an Executive Protection Agent at the Microsoft Corporation, absorbing large corporate structure and tactics. In 2014 he created two entities under SE, UpTop Imaging and Secured Surroundings; two companies dealing primary within the private and hobbyist unmanned aerial systems arena.
To date, Mr. Shepherd has grown UpTop Imaging into a small production company providing photography and videography to major film agencies. Attributes: Mr. Shepherd holds an astonishing number of facets to offer any organization. Primarily his style to tactfully address any issue and bring a solution, is his hallmark. This coupled with advanced knowledge of technology and wide-array of internet platforms offers a unique and unparalleled perspective highly sought after. Throughout the years, Mr. Shepherd has been fortunate to meet a myriad of individuals from all-over the globe, in various positions held throughout the world. Understanding the importance of maintaining a healthy relationship, not only preserving them but cultivating more as well. With his diverse working background, comprehensive travels, and diversified social immersion; Mr. Shepherd carries a candid and welcomed charismatic nature.
Carlos Stinson Mr. Carlos Stinson is a veteran of the U.S. Special Operations Community as a member of the elite 75th Ranger Regiment. He has studied and become a survival expert in Urban & Coppice Environments. In the course of his first enlistment, he performed close to a 1000 missions, with most directed against specific high value targets. Rangers deployed every 8 months after an “intense” yearly pre-deployment training cycle.
The Founder of Red Legion Security Force has been to Iraq twice and Afghanistan twice. All Red Legion operators are experienced veterans of the U.S. Army’s elite 75th Ranger Regiment and SFOD “Delta”, whose standard is unparalleled mission execution and professionalism.
Chet Stone Special Forces veteran turned Vetpreneur. Chet served as a U.S. Army Special Forces (Green Beret) communications sergeant and then as an intelligent sergeant during his team time. With multiple combat deployments, visiting both Afghanistan and Iraq, Chet firmly believes that the Army took the best hair years of his life.
Chet has a Masters of Science in Sports and Health Sciences and is in the process of completing another Masters of Science in Exercise Science. When he is not nerding out over physiology he spends his free time lifting weights, shooting guns and racing bikes (mountain and road). He believes in solar flares, sun spots, sporadic E and he lives by the motto of “do and learn everything you can, you only get one go at this life.
Dale Swanson Dale Swanson is a DoD analyst with 27 years of experience in the US and overseas in multiple theaters. When home, he enjoys shooting sports, hiking, hunting, and working out for general fitness. You can reach him at DWSwanson1965@gmail.com
Jason Silva Jason Silva enlisted as an 0311 prior to 9/11 and served in OIF 1 with RCT-1, he also held secondary MOS’s of Range Coach/PMI and was an Assault Climber. Upon returning from Iraq he was hired at Richmond Police Department in California, there he served just over 10 years.
While at Richmond he worked in patrol, street enforcement teams, the dirt bike unit, homicide detective and 7 years on the departments SWAT team. While with the department SWAT team he was the less lethal weapons instructor, entry team and sniper team. He also worked with the departments Marine Enforcement Unit which patrolled and coordinated with federal agencies to protect critical infrastructure within the San Francisco Bay Area. In January of 2015 he was officially retired from the police department due to a series of on duty injuries.
Upon entering the private sector, Jason took his love for gear and quality, American made products and was hired to work at Triple Aught Design. While there he started a side hobby as a Cerakote applicator and his own brand of AR10/15, Echo Armory. After TAD he did security contracting with several tech companies in the San Francisco Bay Area to include Dropbox, Apple and Facebook. Since November of 2015 he has primarily contracted with Salient Operations Group for security, consulting and EP services and is now an account manager for the company as needed.
Don has been an outdoors enthusiast for a very long time. As a young teen he began to enjoy roaming the areas around his father’s cabin in the Northern California mountains. This is where he gained an appreciation for being able to ski, mountain bike, camp, hike and ultra-trail run through various parts of the Lake Tahoe region. He has cut timber for a living and enjoyed hunting in the cold of Alaska. He is an excellent cyclist, swimmer and free-diver and spends his time learning about homeopathic healing methods. He enjoys Wing Chun Ku-Fu and has been a practitioner for over 15 years. Don subscribes to the Spotter Up way of life. “I will either find a way or I will make one”.
Tranquillo* Tranquillo is a United States Air Force Pararescueman with several deployments. He was born and raised in Northern California where he spent a majority of his time outdoors. In his spare time he enjoys surfing, spearfishing, scuba diving and mountain-biking. He enjoys writing and his favorite author is Ernest Hemingway. “Every man’s life ends the same way. It is only the details of how he lived and how he died that distinguish one man from another” -Hemingway.
Tranquillo subscribes to the Spotter Up way of life. “I will either find a way or I will make one”.
Major (Ret) Wilfred Rodriguez Will is the owner and creator of GRUNTSandCo.com. His writing has been published in Infantry Magazine, SOFREP.com and SpecialOperations.com. He frequently comments on Military.com, DefenseTech, DoDBuzz, and KitUp.com. He has been a frequent guest on the Wilkow Majority radio show.
Will served over 20 years as an Infantry officer in the US, Europe, the Middle East, Latin America and Korea. He has extensive experience in light Infantry, helicopter operations and mechanized warfare to include combat.
He has served in leadership positions from platoon to executive officer of a 1000 man unit to include commanding an Infantry Battalion 120 man Maintenance Platoon and later a Bradley Rifle Company in Desert Storm. Afterwards, he was selected to serve as an instructor at West Point, conducted exercises in almost a dozen Latin American countries for two years, served as an advisor to a national guard infantry battalion, headed the History & Leadership Department for the Combined Arms General Staff College at WHINSEC and his final assignment was to the Infantry’s Battle Lab conducting research for tomorrow’s Infantry force.
Will is a graduate of the Infantry Officer’s Basic Course, Light Infantry Leaders Course, Armor Officers Advanced Course, Bradley and Abrams Commander’s Courses, Combined Arms & Services Staff School and the Simulations Operations Officer Course. He has degrees in National Security and International Affairs from West Point, a Master’s Degree in Counseling & Leadership Development and is a graduate of the Combined Arms General Staff College. He is an NRA certified instructor in Basic Pistol and Personal Protection Inside and Outside the Home.
Some of his awards include the Combat Infantry Badge, Bronze Star, three Meritorious Service Medals, three Army Commendation Medals and the Order of St Maurice. Born and raised in a tough section of Brooklyn New York, Will lost his accent in the Army, but kept the attitude.
Will subscribes to the Spotter Up way of life. “I will either find a way or I will make one”.
Credentials and Experience:
– Modern Army Combatives Brown Belt
– Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Brown Belt
– Civilian Combatives Instructor for the United States Army SMU’s
– Army Veteran with over 26 months in Iraq and Afghanistan
– 82nd ABN Paratrooper
– Affiliate Tactical Instructor for Sheepdog Response and Crisis Application Group
– International Submission grappling Medalist
– Amateur fight experience in MMA and Boxing
– 12 years of martial arts experience
– Over 10 years of combined experience of teaching within government agencies and private organizations
Matt Victoriano Matt served as a Marine Scout/Sniper Chief Scout and Team Leader from 2000-2004. During 2003, he participated in the invasion of Iraq and returned one year later to conduct operations in Al Anbar and Babylon provinces. Since leaving the Marines, Mr. Victoriano has stayed current on national security and foreign policy issues through training, research, and consulting with various organizations and businesses.
Recently, he was recognized as a White House Champion of Change through his work on veterans issues.
Matt Victoriano subscribes to the Spotter Up way of life. “I will either find a way or I will make one”.
Wing Chun* Wing Chun has been a special agent in federal law enforcement for well over 15 years. During that time he has been able to do, and be part of, things he would never have imagined. As an operator on different teams he has performed domestic and overseas missions. His experience encompasses various cases where he was able to work in different capacities. For a time, he worked with different agencies with special access privileges. His current duties keep him in an environment which is compartmentalized to ensure information stays secure. He has protected assets, facilities, and people. Some of these people were famous and some were not but all of them were unique situations and had the government’s focus and interest upon them. Of all his experiences, he would have to say that the most influential and dramatic changes he went through happened when he truly acknowledged that he needed Christ, acknowledged Him in proper context as Lord, and followed in obedience.
In his own words, “Being secure in the knowledge I had gained following Him allowed me to completely change personally and how I worked professionally from dealing with career criminals to going through the door first. It is not a mental state to simply be able to deal or cope with situations. I have learned that my faith is evidentially True based upon reason, rational thinking, using logic, and is very defendable. Left to my own devices I would be no better off than many I know so I can claim no credit for anything that has made me a better follower of Jesus. Sanctification is always a work in progress. A Chessman is similar to this in the pursuit of improvement. When I cannot find a way, I will make one with God’s guidance. All glory to God alone.”
Wing Chun subscribes to the Spotter Up way of life. “I will either find a way or I will make one”
Scott Wolf is a 20 year US Army Special Forces and Special Mission Unit combat veteran. Scott continues to serve and support the US Government in other endeavors around the globe when he isn’t teaching responsible gun owners,LEOs and Executive Protection Agents how to shoot, move and communicate. Scott is also the co-author of “These Dead Lands: IMMOLATION”
2014 Bushido 2 Challenge, 1st place
2014 Spartan Super, Evergreen, 8th place
Jordan has placed first in:
North Face Endurance Challenge, New York 50 M
Hells Hills 25 KM
Rothrock Challenge 18 M
North Face Endurance Challenge, Kansas City 50 KM
North Face Endurance Challenge, Washington 50 M
North Face Endurance Challenge, New York 50 M
Nueces 50- 50 M
Placed in top 3 in multiple endurance challenges. Attended Liberty University, majoring in Kinesiology and competed on the track and cross country teams. While at Liberty earned several conference titles and was part of the 2006 US Junior Cross Country team that competed at the World Cross Country Championships in Fukuoka, Japan.
PR’s are 3:50 for the 1500m, 14:00.13 for the 5k and 29:34 for the 10k.
Member of the North Face Team, McDougal rolled through the desert trails in 6:30 to earn the U.S. 50-Mile Trail Championships/Nueces 50 – Rocksprings, Texas.
2007 (R-Jr.):Five-time All-Big South performer (one cross country, two indoor track, two outdoor track) … finished as runner-up at the Big South Cross Country Championships … earned first all-region honor of his career at the NCAA Southeast Regional Championships … finished 16th at the meet, in a personal-best 10K time of 30:27, narrowly missing a berth in the NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships … became the first men’s runner to win three straight 5K titles at the Big South Indoor Track & Field Championships, and also anchored the Flames’ distance medley relay squad to victory … garnered a pair of second-place finishes at the Big South Outdoor Track & Field Championships, in the 3,000-meter steeplechase and the 5K.
2006 (R-So.):Five-time All-Big South performer (one cross country, two indoor track, two outdoor track) … Big South third-place finisher in cross country … Liberty’s No. 2 runner (32nd overall) at the NCAA Southeast Regional Championships … defended his Big South indoor 5K title and finished as 3K runner-up … 1,500-meter and 10K runner-up at outdoor conference meet.
2005 (R-Fr.):Five-time All-Big South performer (two indoor track, three outdoor track) … finished second behind his brother Josh at each of the first three cross country meets of the year … ran an 8K PR of 23:46 to finish as the Stanford Invitational runner-up … placed fifth at the USA Track & Field (USATF) Junior Cross Country Championships, earning a trip to Japan for the World Championships … 5K champion and 3K runner-up at the Big South Indoor Track & Field Championships … 5K and 10K champion and 1,500-meter runner-up at the Big South outdoor meet … finished second in the Penn Relays 5K.
2004 (Fr.): Redshirted the season … placed fourth at the USATF Junior National Championships in the 5,000 meters with a time of 14:29.
Prep: Home schooled … placed 23rd at the Foot Locker Northeast Regional Cross Country Championships as a senior.
Cross Country Bests: 8K – 23:46, 10K – 30:27
Track Bests: Steeplechase – 8:58, 5K – 14:00
Jordan subscribes to the Spotter Up way of life. “I will either find a way or I will make one”.
Marty Farrell Marty Farrell stands 5’11” tall and weighs just 156 lbs but he is our country’s top kettlebell lifter. To gain the title meant hoisting two 70-pound kettlebells over his head in a test of strength and endurance as many times as he could without stopping in a 10-minute window. Marty did this 88 times.
Marty has taught and certified hundreds of people and is one the most respected Kettlebell Sport lifters in America. Marty Farrell (1)Apart from being the first American Male to achieve the Rank of Master of Sport (MS) in Kettlebell Sport with the World Kettlebell Club (WKC). Marty has also been trained by two of the World’s Leading Kettlebell Sport Organizations and has even traveled internationally to learn from top Kettlebell Sport Coaches.
Marty is also an active International Kettlebell Sport Athlete with many years of experience both on and off the platform. Marty has also worked with the Navy Seal Combative Instructor’s and many more organizations. He serves to help others build up their mental fortitude, get fit and through following some of his training advice gain a strong survival attitude.
Kettlebell Lifter is the First US Master of Sport in all kettlebell events (Biathlon and Long Cycle) and currently holds best Coefficient in Biathlon in 24 kg and 32kg in North America.
EDUCATION / CERTIFICATIONS
International Kettlebell Sport and Fitness Academy (IKSFA) Kettlebell Sport Coach Level 2 Certified (New York, USA 2012)
Russian Kettlebell Challenge Certified (RKC) 2004/2005
American Kettlebell Club Certified (AKC) 2006-2011
Student of World Renowned Kettlebell Sport Master Coach Sergey Rudnev
TITLES / ACHIEVEMENTS
Represented first US team and Air Force in Moscow 2005 for World Championships
Achieved Master of sport in event known as Biathlon 2007
Biathlon- combined total of repetitions in 2 separate lifts, jerks and snatches with a 32kg (70 lbs) kettlebell each hand for jerks 66 repetitions and 87 snatches with one 32kg (70 lbs) Kettlebell
Clean and jerk (long Cycle) Master of Sport in 2009 49 repetitions with 2 32kg (70 lbs) Kettlebells
First American to achieve Master of Sport in both events biathlon and long cycle.
US Nationals Champion 2005 San Diego
US Nationals Champion 2006
US Nationals Champion 2007
International Champions 6 countries 2007 lb for lb
Arnold Classic lb for lb Long Cycle Champion 2009
Arnold Classic lb for lb Biathlon Champion 2010
Arnold Classic Absolute Biathlon Champion 2010
Long Island Nationals Absolute Champion 2011
Queens New York IKSFA Nationals Absolute Champion 2011
Marty Farrell subscribes to the Spotter Up way of life. “I will either find a way or I will make one”.
Make your Submission to Spotter Up
Spotter Up is actively seeking individuals who may be interested in submitting a piece for possible consideration. Confidence, character and a command of the English language are just a few ideals we strive to bring our audience not only in our writing style, but in the apparent heartbeat of the author. If you think this is something you’d like to do, shoot us an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with an article you believe we would take interest in and your preferred contact information.
All work must be your own and it must not be previously published or pending such actions. Ensure you are conscious of the type of material we discuss on Spotter up. What may fit a seemingly similar website or publication may not fit with our intent. We fully respect operational security, classified information, and our government’s policies and procedures when it comes to writing while either on active duty or as a veteran. We protect identities of our writers that wish to remain unknown for their own personal or professional reasons, not due to the content of the article.
Respect the intellectual property of those who provide the grist for your own thinking. If you rely on the original reporting of others, credit them by name and include a hyperlink to the source(s) you used. Articles provide analysis and new information on topics of importance to Americans. We want to advance the national conversation with fresh insight. Polemics for their own sake and recapitulations of what has been published elsewhere are not normally of interest.
Spotter Up publishes previously unpublished material only and we are not an aggregator for content published elsewhere.
In the subject line of your e-mail put SUBMISSION (all caps).
At the top of your manuscript put the title, your name, your e-mail address, and the date of submission.
Include a brief note stating the outline of the content of your submission.
MS word submissions are preferred.
Submissions should be 800 to 1,200 words but can be longer depending on further discussions with the editor.
If the submission is accepted for publication the writer may include an “author’s credit” that will appear at the bottom of the article. This credit may include a link to the author’s website, blog, or e-mail. The author’s credit should be no longer than 25 words.