Craig Johnson is the New York Times bestselling author of the Walt Longmire mystery novels, which are the basis for Longmire, the hit Netflix original drama, now filming its 6th season.
The books have won multiple awards: Le Prix du Polar Nouvel Observateur/Bibliobs, the Wyoming Historical Association’s Book of the Year, Le Prix 813, the Western Writers of America’s Spur Award, the Mountains & Plains Book of the Year, the SNCF Prix de Polar, Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year , The Watson Award, Library Journal’s Best Mystery of the Year, the Rocky, and the Will Rogers Award for Fiction. Spirit of Steamboat was selected by the Wyoming State Library as the inaugural One Book Wyoming, Johnson lives in Ucross, Wyoming, population twenty-five.
A thirty-five year veteran of the Los Angeles Police Department, Paul Bishop’s career included a three year tour with his department’s Anti-Terrorist Division and over twenty-five years’ experience in the investigation of sex crimes. His Special Assault Units regularly produced the highest number of detective initiated arrests and highest crime clearance rates in the city. Twice honored as LAPD’s Detective of the Year, Paul has also received the Quality and Productivity Commission Awardfrom the City of Los Angeles.
As a nationally recognized interrogator, Paul starred as the lead interrogator and driving force behind the ABC TV reality show Take the Money and Run from producer Jerry Bruckheimer. Based on his expertise in deception detection, he currently teaches interrogation seminars for law enforcement and arson investigators nationwide.
Paul has had fifteen published novels, including five in his LAPD. Detective Fey Croaker series. He has also written numerous scripts for episodic television and feature films. He is the co-creator and editor of the popular Fight Card series of hardboiled boxing novels and the Pulse Fiction anthologies. His latest novel, Lie Catchers, is the first in a new series featuring top LAPD interrogators Ray Pagan and Calamity Jane Randall.
Rick McMahan has been in federal law enforcement for over 24 years. From 1992 until 1998, Rick was a Special Agent with the United States Air Force Office of Special Investigations (AFOSI). He worked person and property crimes on various Air Force bases, as well as supporting AFOSI’s counter-intelligence and white collar crime programs. In 1998, Rick joined the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).
As an ATF Senior Special Agent (SSA) Rick has worked a variety of cases within ATF’s mission—-investigating interstate firearms traffickers, case agent handling an undercover operation into outlaw motorcycle gangs, as well as conducting a murder for hire sting, just to name a few. Rick is a certified firearms instructor, and has served as an on-the-job trainer for new agents.
In his free time, Rick enjoys writing and has had his work published, including twice having stories selected for Mystery Writers of America (MWA) anthologies (DEATH DO US PART edited by Harlan Coben and VENGEANCE edited by Lee Child).
For fifteen years, David Corbett worked for the San Francisco private investigation firm of Palladino & Sutherland, and played a significant part in a number of high-profile criminal and civil litigations, including the Lincoln Savings & Loan Case, The DeLorean Trial, the Coronado Company marijuana indictments, The Cotton Club Murder Case, The People’s Temple Trial, the first Michael Jackson child molestation case, and a RICO civil litigation brought by the Teamsters against former union leaders associated with organized crime—as well as numerous other drug, murder, and fraud cases.
David’s acclaimed novels have been nominated for several prestigious awards, including a Macavity for Best Novel. His fourth novel Do They Know I’m Running?, instantly garnered widespread praise, and was selected as Best Novel—Rising Star Category for the Spinetingler Award.
In 2013 David published his writing guide The Art of Character, which national bestseller Elizabeth Brundage called “a writer’s bible that will lead to your character’s soul.” He teaches and gives seminars and workshopsat conferences throughout the United States, Canada, and Mexico; he’s a regular contributor to the writers’ blog Writer Unboxed; and his articles on craft and theory have appeared in the New York Times, Narrative, Writer’s Digest, The Writer, Zyzzyva, MovieMaker, Bright Ideas, Crimespreeand other outlets.
Denene Lofland received a Ph.D. in Pathology, with an emphasis in microbiology, from the Medical College of Virginia. As a former biotech company director, Denene managed successful clinical projects that resulted in FDA approval for two new antimicrobial drugs for the treatment of pneumonia and cystic fibrosis. She also supervised several projects, including government-sponsored research which required her to maintain a secret security clearance. Denene is a renowned scientist known for her expertise in DNA, bioterrorism, and new drug discovery, such as supervision of research for pre-clinical anti-infective drug candidates and drug development through Phase III clinical trials, including FDA and/or EMEA regulatory filings of four compounds. She has published several articles in a variety of scientific journals and contributed to the thirteenth edition of Bailey and Scott’s Diagnostic Microbiology. Denene currently serves as a professor at Touro University California/College of Osteopathic Medicine.
*Dr. Lofland is sponsored by Patti Phillips.
Dr. Katherine Ramsland, director of the Master of Arts in Criminal Justice Program at DeSales University, also teaches courses on extreme offenders and forensic psychology. A regular WPA instructor, she has published over 1,000 articles, stories, and reviews, and 59 books, including The Mind of a Murderer, The Forensic Science of CSI, Inside the Minds of Serial Killers, The Ivy League Killer, and The Murder Game. Her book, Psychopath, was a #1 bestseller on the Wall Street Journal’s list.
With former FBI profiler Gregg McCrary, she co-authored The Unknown Darkness: Profiling the Predators among Us, with Dr. Henry C. Lee, The Real Life of a Forensic Scientist, and with Professor James E. Starrs, A Voice for the Dead. She presents workshops to law enforcement, psychologists, coroners, judges, and attorneys, and has consulted for several television series, including CSI and Bones.
She also writes a regular blog for Psychology Today called “Shadow-boxing” and consults for numerous crime documentary production companies. Her latest book, Confessions of a Serial Killer, was written with Dennis “BTK” Rader, and her new novel, The Ripper Letter, relies on Ripper lore.
Howard Lewis has practiced martial arts for 20 years and taught for 10. His highest rank is a 5th degree black sash in Esoma Kung Fu. Howard says there are things in books that drive martial artists nuts, and he has taken it upon himself to see that writers receive the best information available.
Howard is a key player in the WPA organization. Without him the bells wouldn’t ring and the whistles would remain, well, whistleless…and there would be no name tags, classes would certainly be in dissarray, and the t-shirts would not arrive on time, if at all.
Lee Lofland is the author of the Writers Digest bestselling book Police Procedure and Investigation, a Macavity Award nominee for best non-fiction mystery. Lee, a former police detective and recipient of the esteemed Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police Award for Valor, is a nationally acclaimed expert on police procedure and crime-scene investigation. As an expert, Lee has appeared on national television, BBC television, and on NPR’s Talk of the Nation, and he has served as a consultant for numerous authors and for TV and film.
Lee’s articles have appeared in newspapers, newsletters, blogs, and in magazines such as Writers Digest and The Writer. He has served as judge for the ITW Thriller Awards and for the MWA Edgar Awards. Lee’s latest release is an audio version of Murder on Minor Avenue, a true crime tale in the anthology Masters Of True Crime: Chilling Stories Of Murder And The Macabre.
Lee is the founder and host of the Writers’ Police Academy.
Leslie Budewitz is the bestselling author of the Spice Shop Mysteries, and the Food Lovers’ Village Mysteries. Death al Dentewon the 2013 Agatha Award for Best First Novel. A practicing lawyer, she is also the author of a guide for writers, Books, Crooks & Counselors: How to Write Accurately About Criminal Law & Courtroom Procedure, winner of the 2011 Agatha Award for Best Nonfiction. The president of Sisters in Crime, Leslie lives in NW Montana.
Former NYPD Detective Marco Conelli sets a new standard for learning in the subject of Criminal Investigation. Tactics, techniques, and procedures are brought to life in a thoughtful, provocative forum that provides an expert guide for authors. Tap into his well-traveled career from infiltrating Organized Crime gangs as an undercover officer, to his personal manhunts for the most dangerous people in New York City.
As a writer, Marco Conelli is the creator of The Matthew Livingston mystery series. He has successfully drawn from his vast police experience in creating the suspense and crime-solving fiction that has ignited the Young Adult mystery genre.
Marco is a professional speaker who has been credited for consulting many best-selling authors on police procedure and crime drama. 2016 marks his 7th consecutive appearance at The Writer’s Police Academy.
Robin Burcell has worked as a cop, hostage negotiator, and an FBI-trained forensic artist. She is also the author of award-winning thrillers. Now she uses that unparrelled experience to continue Carolyn Weston’s groundbreaking series of books, which were the basis for the hit TV show “The Streets of San Francisco.”
Bill Bongle is a 29 year police veteran and technology consultant, rising to the rank of Captain before retiring from the Green Bay Police Department in 2015. Bill’s unique blend of training in computer forensics and interest in aviation drew him to the world of drones. Bill has conducted extensive research on this evolving technology which includes applications for public safety and the legal issues surrounding the use of drones. In 2013 Bill founded the Green Bay Area Drone User Group which has grown to nearly 200 members. As founder of Innovative Policing Solutions LLC, Bill has been a public safety trainer for the last 15 years and a presenter at conferences throughout the U.S. and the U.K.
Colleen Belongea’s full-time law enforcement experience spans over 22 years serving at the Town of Menasha Police Department and the Green Bay Police Department. Her experience includes active field work as a patrol officer, field training officer, community police officer, mounted patrol officer, SWAT officer, field training supervisor, patrol lieutenant, shift commander, School Resource Supervisor, Detective Supervisor and Training Supervisor.
Throughout her career she has been recognized with the honors: Class President for Executive Development Institute, March 2003 to March 2004; Emergency Vehicle Operations Instructor Award, Northeast Wisconsin Technical College, May 1996; Respect for Law Award, Thursday Breakfast Optimist Club, 1996; Wisconsin Law Enforcement Officer of the Year, 1988.
Currently, Colleen serves as an instructor for a variety of academic classes and as a tactical trainer within the Criminal Justice Division. As a professional, her goal is to combine 20+ years of law enforcement experience with the love for teaching in a progressive/reputable educational setting and to function as a vital part of a collaborative educational team in preparing outstanding criminal justice professionals. She looks forward to work with all of you.
Ed Janke is the former Chief Deputy of the Brown County Sheriff’s Department. His law enforcement career began with the Sheriff’s Department in 1983. Ed has served as Captain in the Support Services Division, also as Lieutenant in the Patrol Division assigned as a Shift Commander. Ed holds a Master’s Degree in Management and Organizational Behavior and a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice. He is also a graduate of the FBI National Academy.
He holds State of Wisconsin Unified Tactical Instructor ratings in Firearms, Defense and Arrest Tactics and Emergency Vehicle Operations. He is a Wisconsin Department of Justice, Training and Standards Instructor Trainer for Vehicle Contacts Instruction. He also instructs SWAT Tactics, Distraction Devices and Chemical Agents. He instructs Incident Command.
Ed is trained as an Assessor and as a Mediator. He has extensive training in Leadership Principles, Terrorism and Dignitary Protection, and was recognized by the Wisconsin Law Enforcement Officer’s Training Association in 1998 as Wisconsin ‘s Law Enforcement Training Officer of the Year. He has served on several Wisconsin Department of Justice committees that develop or review training guidelines that include the guidelines for Act 88, Vehicle Contacts and Ethics.
Ed is a volunteer firefighter with the Howard Fire Department, serving as a Captain in the Operations Division. He is certified as Fire Officer I, Fire Instructor, Firefighter II, Operator Engineer and Aerial Operator. Ed is also a board member of the Brown County Community Mediation Center where he serves as a voluntary mediator.
Hollie Bauer is the EMS Simulation Instructor for Northeast Wisconsin Technical College (NWTC.) She provides real life training scenarios and hands on education; via a high fidelity mannequin, to all disciplines of the EMS program at NWTC. Hollie is currently an entry level firefighter and a licensed paramedic for the State of Wisconsin, as well licensed as a paramedic at the national level too. In addition to her paramedic license, Hollie holds her critical care (CC) and tactical EMS (TEMS) endorsements through the State of Wisconsin. She is certified as an AHA instructor for CPR, ACLS, and PALS, and holds her Instructor 2 certification through the State of Wisconsin. Hollie is currently completing her nursing degree, and will be a Registered Nurse (RN) in May of 2016 too.
Hollie has been active in EMS/Fire for the past 10 years. Prior to teaching at the college, Hollie has worked as a Firefighter for Hillsboro Fire Department and a Paramedic for Reedsburg Ambulance Service, Baraboo Ambulance Service, Divine Savior EMS, and Dells-Delton EMS. In addition to the pre-hospital experience, Hollie also has in-hospital experience as a Paramedic in OB, Medical-Surgical, and the ER. When not teaching at NWTC, Hollie currently still works part- time as a critical care paramedic for Gold Cross Ambulance in the Fox Valley area.
Ian Nishimoto began his law enforcement career at the Outagamie County Sheriff’s Department as a deputy sheriff and part-time for the Seymour Police Department and U.S. Marshal Service. He is currently employed part-time for the Black Creek Police Department.
Ian completed his Bachelor’s Degree at the University of Wisconsin – Green Bay and completed his Masters Degree at the University of Wisconsin – Stout in Training and Development. He is a certified master instructor in Defensive and Arrest Tactics, Firearms/Tactical Rifle, Scenario testing and Tactical Response. Certified instructor in Professional Communications, ATK Force-On-Force Scenarios, S.P.E.A.R., Tactical Functional Training and Criminal Justice for the Wisconsin Department of Justice Training & Standards and the Wisconsin Technical College System. He also maintains certifications in Heckler and Koch Tactical Team training, Simunition Supervisory, Field Training Officer, and Emergency Management Awareness. He is currently serving as a full-time instructor for the Northeast Wisconsin Technical College Criminal Justice Department.
Born and raised in Germany, Johann Boden entered Bundeswehr (German Army) as student in Militaerakademie (college program comparable with ROTC/Military Academy) and joined air assault unit. He volunteered and was accepted for a newly formed unit under auspices of Grenzschutzgruppe 5 & 9 (GSG9) to address the anarchist and terrorist insurgence in West Germany at that time, mainly consisting of the Baader Meinhof group, Brigade Rosso (Red Brigade) and Palestinian Fatah (Terrorist unit led by Yassir Arafat, widely held responsible for ’72 Munich Olympics terror attacks). Johann emigrated to the US in 1986 after successful career and threat resolution in Germany. He married, immigrated and then naturalized US Citizen as part of the Taft Act before deploying to Operation Desert Storm and Desert Shield with the USMC. He was educated in Germany, holding Collegiate degree commensurate with B.A./B.S. in US.
John Flannery was employed with the Brown County Sheriff’s Office as a Directed Enforcement Officer (II) and retired from the department to join the staff of the NWTC Public Safety Division full time to instruct in the police academy and the law enforcement degree program.
During his tenure, Flannery supervised a unit of officers that focused on street level crime. Additional duties included being a Field Training Officer, part of the the Unified Tactical Training Unit and as a member of the Mobile Field Force.
Flannery currently holds instructor certifications through Wisconsin Department of Justice – Training and Standards in numerous legal, tactical and procedural topics related to policing. Since 2005, he has served on state advisory committees for both police training of recruits and the development of best practices on active shootings for law enforcement with the WI Department of Justice.
He is a paid consultant to Training and Standards, creating the monthly “Street Smart” scenarios serving Wisconsin’s 4000+ police officers and found on www.wilenet.org. For five years, Flannery served as an Emergency Management Coordinator at a local university and a member of a tactical team responding to threats on campus.
Since 2010, John has trained numerous international police officers. Most recently this training occurred in the Caribbean on tactical response and patrol procedures for front line officers. He has been recognized for his efforts in both the profession and community, notably having been designated the “Wisconsin Law Enforcement Officer of the Year” in 2001 by the WI Attorney General’s office for his intervention in a child sexual assault.
Other honors include: Optimist “Respect the Law” Award (1998 and 2001), Sheriff’s Commendation (1997), League of Municipalities “Good Government Award” (2009), British Transport Police Commendation (2015), and NWTC Excellence in Teaching (2015). In 2012, Flannery was appointed by Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson of the Wisconsin Supreme Court, to the Preliminary Review Committee; an advisory board within the Office of Lawyer Regulation that investigates complaints and recommends discipline against attorneys here in Wisconsin.
For approximately twelve years, Flannery has advised and consulted the Catholic Diocese of Green Bay on matters related to sexual abuse by clergy. He has been appointed a special advisor to the Bishop and is on the Independent Review Board (IRB) to investigate claims of sexual abuse.
Kevin Rathburn became a full-time faculty member at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College in 2000 after having served as an adjunct instructor for nine years. Prior to that, Mr. Rathburn served for ten years as an Assistant District Attorney for Brown County in Green Bay, Wisconsin. In 2004, Mr. Rathburn also became the Municipal Judge for the Village of Suamico. Mr. Rathburn holds BAs in political science and economics from St. Norbert College (1987) and a JD from Marquette University Law School (1990).
While in Law school, Mr. Rathburn served as a law clerk to several Milwaukee Circuit Court Judges handling civil and criminal matters and the appeal of cases from the local boards and municipal court in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He also completed an internship in public sector labor law with the law firm of Mulcahy and Wherry and an internship with Blue Cross & Blue Shield Insurance Company of Milwaukee.
Mr. Rathburn is a State Certified Instructor for the Wisconsin Technical College System. He is also certified by the Department of Justice, Training and Standards Board in the areas of Child Maltreatment, Constitutional Law, Corrections Law, Courts and Jurisdiction, Criminal Law, Introduction to Criminal Justice, Criminology, Domestic Violence, Ethics in Criminal Justice, Interviews and Interrogation, Juvenile Law, Report Writing, Sexual Assault and Sensitive Crimes. Mr. Rathburn recently helped create a Juvenile Law Manual and update to the Criminal Law Manual for the Department of Justice, Training and Standards Bureau.
Mr. Rathburn is a current member of the Department of Justice Legal Context Advisory Committee and has served on the Committee since 2005. He has also served as a Commissioner on the Governor’s Commission on School Violence from 1994-95 and the Governor’s Juvenile Justice Commission from 1996-2002. He is a past member of the Brown County Youth Aids Committee, Brown County Council on Child Sexual Abuse, Brown County Subcommittee on Underage Drinking, Brown County Consortium on Dysfunctional Families and St. Vincent Hospital’s Child Health Team.
Since 1991 Mr. Rathburn has made presentations on a wide variety of legal topics at numerous conferences including the Wisconsin Jail Association, Wisconsin Juvenile Officers and Juvenile Intake Workers, the State of Wisconsin DARE Officers Association, the Wisconsin Criminal Justice Instructors, the Wisconsin Arson Investigators and the Wisconsin Criminal Investigator’s Association. Mr. Rathburn frequently provides legal updates for law enforcement and correction agencies. He has also provided in-service training for Unified Tactical instructors, administrators, jail officers, dispatchers and casino security staff. Mr. Rathburn is also a frequent speaker for the State Supreme Court in its training of Municipal Judges and Court Clerks in Wisconsin.
In 1994, Mr. Rathburn received the Optimist Law Award for his contribution to the legal field. He also received an Outstanding Teacher Award in 2004, 2005, and 2006 from Who’s Who Among Teachers in American Universities & Colleges. He was also selected for Who’s Who in Collegiate Faculty for 2007 and 2008.
Mr. Rathburn says his family is the most important part of his life. He spends as much time as possible with his wife, Beth, and their three sons, Sam, Jack, and Ben. He enjoys working and spending time with them in and around their home especially landscaping and gardening. He spends many of his late evening hours writing legal updates and manuals for law enforcement officers as well as reading about the law. He also likes reading espionage or mystery novels and watching movies. He is an avid Packers fan and enjoys most sports. He especially enjoys walks with Beth and their dogs, Sophie and Hope.
Matt Ninham has been a Patrol Officer for 15 years and is assigned as a Community Resource Officer. Matt is currently a full time Instructor for Criminal Justice at NWTC. Matt is a member of the Oneida Tribe and has lived on The Oneida Reservation almost his whole life.
Matt has experienced how Native American Gangs use tribal culture and symbolism to recruit gang members, represent their gangs, sell, and transport illegal drugs. He has an insider’s knowledge of how Native American Gangs affect the Tribal Communities they are established in and is able to give insight on how he combats gangs through relationships with community members and community events.
His related law enforcement training and programs consist of the following: Native American Drug & Gang Initiative (Drug & Gang Unit), Green Bay Gang Task force Member, Fox Valley Gang Task Force Member, Department of Corrections Security Threats Group member, Native Gangs Specialist & Instructor, Oneida Gang Task Force, Team Leader for NADGI (Drug & Gang Unit), Street & Prison Gang training, DEA Basic Drug Investigation School, Indoor & Outdoor Marijuana Grows, Special Deputization for the FBI, Thermal Imaging Operator, Division of Criminal Investigations Drug School, Community Resource Officer, Field Training Officer, State of Wisconsin Technical College System Board Certification, Adjunct Instructor for “Native Gangs” at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College, Instructor for The National Gang Intelligence Center for “Gangs in Indian Country” and assistance in writing its updated curriculum for 2012.
Matt has received several awards during his career in law enforcement, only to name a few:
- Oneida VFW 7784 Warriors Certificate of Appreciation for “Outstanding performance and lasting contribution to Law Enforcement & Youth Programs” -2014
- Outagamie County Best Badge Award for “Community outreach and outstanding work as an officer 2003”
- Oneida Police Department “Officer of the Year” -2003
- Fox Valley Technical College Police Recruit Academy “Most Valuable Patrol Officer” -2001
- Oneida Police certificate of achievement “Sensitive incident involving a weapon” -2005
- Outagamie County Best Badge Award for “Teamwork investigation involving the overdose of four children” -2012
- Certificate of Appreciation from 432nd Civil Affairs Battalion For “Outstanding support provided to the soldiers of the police advisor team/CAT 12 during “Operation Iraqi Freedom” – 2003 to 2004
- Honored by the Ho-Chunk nation and presented with a Pendleton blanket at the 2012 National Missing and exploited Children’s conference for “Excellence in community education & awareness on Native American gangs.”
- Honored by youth from the Navajo Indian Nation and presented with two cultural gifts at the 2014 SIENA Youth Leadership Conference for “Being a mentor and inspiration to youth in understanding a career in Law enforcement.”
- Letter of commendation from The Oneida Police Department for a critical incident involving a Barricaded Suspect armed with multiple firearms.
Matt Ninham Certificate of Appreciation from United States Homeland Security Department for “Gangs in Indian Country” Trainer.
Mike Knetzger is a 23-year law enforcement veteran and currently a Field Training Officer and Training Unit member with the City of Green Bay. Prior to policing in Green Bay he spent four years as a patrol officer and detective in the Town of Brookfield (WI) police department.
Knetzger is a certified Wisconsin Technical College Instructor and certified by the Wisconsin Department of Justice Training & Standards Board to teach Victims, Defensive & Arrest Tactics, Firearms, Vehicle Contacts, Professional Communications Skills. He is also a certified S.P.E.A.R. instructor. He holds an associate degree in police science (criminal justice) from Waukesha County Technical College, a bachelor’s degree in justice and public policy from Concordia University, and a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh. He also teaches criminal justice courses in the associate degree program at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College.
Knetzger has also written several articles on computer crime and has authored five books including “Careers in Public Safety: Cop or Correctional Officer,” “Criminal Law,” and “Ashley’s Story.”
Nathan Riehl holds a national and state license as a Paramedic, and is a full-time faculty member of Northeast Wisconsin Technical College. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin- Green Bay with a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology and Education and a Master’s Degree in Applied Leadership in Teaching and Learning. In addition to teaching, Nathan stays active in the community as a volunteer EMT-Intermediate Technician with Black Creek Rescue.
Nathan sits on many committees looking at the combined response of law enforcement, fire, and EMS agencies to emergency scenes to include active shooter response. Nathan is a combat medic in the Wisconsin Army National Guard. He has held many positions in the military over the last 17 years and is currently a combat medic instructor. Nathan was deployed to Iraq in 2009 and worked as an emergency department shift supervisor.
Randy Clifton is a passionate and dedicated instructor. He has written on, lectured on and publically promoted reality-based, tactical-scenario training over the last two decades. It’s an interesting fact that he is the co-author of both Simunition’s and Vista Outdoor’s Force on Force™ reality-based training manuals.
His long and distinguished law enforcement career started as a Special Agent for the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). His 13-year career as a decorated agent also included serving as an Instructor at the FBI Academy, in Quantico, VA, as part of the Safety & Survival Unit.
At the Academy, Randy taught the following courses: basic training for new agents, defensive tactics, mental conditioning, practical application of deadly force and several other critical skill sets. While serving as an Instructor, Randy was compelled by the scenario-based training at Hogan’s Alley. To this day, he strives to perfect and promote the benefits of scenario-based training on a worldwide level.
Randy’s talents in law enforcement training and coordination, combat simulation and tactical training curriculum development led him to a prestigious position, in the private sector, with Simunition, where he supervised and coordinated both sales and training. Randy now heads up Vista Outdoor’s high-profile Force on Force™ product line where he manages the overall brand and, more importantly, the new and revolutionary Scenario Instructor Training Course.
Randy earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Political Science from Michigan State University. He holds close to a dozen police and military instructor certifications. He also is currently completing a Master’s Degree in Reality-Based Tactical Scenario Training from the University of Wisconsin, making him the first person in the nation to earn such a degree.
As the foremost authority on reality-based, tactical-scenario training, Randy is greatly respected by his colleagues and peers. His passion and success is deeply rooted in sincere concern for officer survival. He spends every day devoted to teaching and demonstrating skills that keep officers alive and well––through his area of expertise.
Robert C. Willis has the requisite practical experience as a patrol officer/deputy, “SWAT” team member, field training officer, departmental training officer, defensive tactics coordinator, recruit academy and in-service academy instructor, instructor development “master instructor,” professional officer survival instructor, and lecturer and a litigation consultant. Mr. Willis, recently retired as an instructor and trainer at the Northeast Wisconsin Technical College (NWTC) Tactical Training Complex.
Prior to retirement, he was responsible for the instruction and training of Law Enforcement personnel, Corrections, Probation & Parole agents, “special response” teams and instructor development programs at a million-dollar tactical facility located on the NWTC campus. He taught hands-on and academic courses in the Law Enforcement Associate Degree Program and the Law Enforcement and Corrections Recruit Academies. He will maintain an adjunct instructor relationship with NWTC and other colleges.
The law enforcement instructional career of Mr. Willis has spanned more than thirty-three years in which he has trained federal, state and local agencies and officers, the United States Military as well as professional private security officers, public service employees and private citizens. This blend of educational and occupational background, as well as instructional experience provides the foundation for expertise and his services that include serving as a litigation consultant and “expert witness.”
He was the original author and master instructor of the “Defensive and Arrest Tactics” (DAAT) program of the State of Wisconsin and he has been responsible for training and updating instructors for Police, Sheriff’s, State Investigators and Department of Natural Resources agencies throughout the State of Wisconsin since 1986. He has instructed for the State of Wisconsin Department of Corrections/ Division of Community Corrections, Juvenile Corrections and has trained and certified defensive tactics instructors for the Division of Probation and Parole.
For more than a decade Mr. Willis traveled the United States and Canada with the Calibre Press, Inc. “Street Survival®” Seminar and trained in excess of ten thousand officers per year. His continued relationship in active law enforcement and “hands-on” instruction keeps Mr. Willis contemporary with the needs of current Law Enforcement agencies and their officers.
Mr. Willis authored the original State of Wisconsin’s Defensive and Arrest Tactics Manual as well as numerous other tactical manuals and he currently contributes articles to national publications. Mr. Willis creates and provides academic and realistic “hands on” training programs that allow officers to translate training into their duty assignments by using state of the art training methodology and equipment. He is able to communicate to officers, supervisors, administrators and to the public and articulate the complex issues facing law enforcement in today’s environment. He is often consulted and interviewed by the media, especially after critical events. He is sought out as a speaker at conferences and symposiums and recently taught at a Law Enforcement conference in China.
Ryan Windorff has worked in the public safety field since 2005 and is currently employed as a police officer, crisis negotiator, firefighter, and emergency medical technician. Ryan has received extensive training in conducting drug investigations from the Wisconsin Department of Justice and United States Drug Enforcement Administration. His experience includes three years assigned to a Wisconsin High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) task force as an undercover drug investigator where he was involved in more than 1,000 drug investigations that were successfully prosecuted in both state and federal courts.
During Ryan’s time working drug investigations, he set records within his task force in currency and drug seizures and contributed to three consecutive record-setting years for the task force. Ryan is proficient in undercover operations that include confidential informants, controlled buys, electronic surveillance, and wiretap investigations, warrants/court orders/subpoenas, and other investigative techniques used to disrupt and dismantle large scale drug trafficking operations. Ryan has conducted trainings for law enforcement officers throughout the state in the areas of drug identification, drug investigations, and search warrants/court orders/subpoenas.
More instructor bios on the way!