Written By: Ronald Sklar
“Knowledge is empowerment,” says Chad Talbot, founder of 911 Academy. Chad was a USN Gunners Mate, Naval Special Warfare Combatant Craft Crewman (SWCC) Operator from 1993 – 2003.
He says, “You need that knowledge so that you can make a smart decision based on the circumstances.”
The circumstances to which he refers is terrorism. As we have seen in the news lately, those circumstances are becoming more and more frequent, and all we can do to protect ourselves — and those around us — is to prepare. How? By allowing experts like Chad and his mobile defensive tactics and firearms school to train us to have a lifesaving plan in times of crisis.
“When you have an active shooter situation,” he says, “people don’t understand four simple rules: duck, cover, assess and react. It’s simple and easy to remember. You have to come up with a plan. You don’t just run aimlessly.”
911 Academy offers its services to both police officers and professional military personnel, as well as civilians. The objective: to expand on their tactics and techniques, while becoming the solution to — not the victim of — any problem that suddenly arises.
“They all want their training from the best,” Chad says. “And that’s what we provide.”
911 Academy is a disabled-veteran-owned company comprised of current and former U.S. Military and Special Operations instructors from various branches of our services. Also included are criminal defense attorneys and law enforcement instructors.
The tools taught by 911 Academy can be used anywhere throughout the world, including in the home. When it comes to home defense, Chad says, “It’s not just about the weapon, but what’s in your environment and what’s available to you. It’s about how to use your environment to your tactical advantage, whatever that may be.”
Part of what Chad and 911 Academy provides is simply a wake up call.
“A lot of people you see today are walking around staring at their iPhones with their headphones in,” Chad says. “They walk around with it everywhere they go. I see it all the time. And they have no concept of their surroundings. We get you to change your thought process mentally. We talk about situational awareness and a combat mindset. By learning how to think outside the box, we’re providing you with those lifesaving tools so that hopefully you see the [emergency] before it even happens.”
As a SWCC operator, Chad specialized in providing small-caliber gunfire support on specialized high-tech, high-speed, and low-profile Surface Combatant Craft. This led to secretly infiltrating and exfiltrating Navy SEALs on Special Operations missions worldwide.
These missions included Direct Action on land, sea, coastline and rivers (such as strikes, captures, and ship takedowns by Visit, Board, Search and Seizure), Special Reconnaissance, Coastal Patrol and Interdiction of suspect ships and surface craft, Counterterrorism operations, Riverine Warfare, Deception Operations, Search and Rescue Operations, and Foreign Internal Defense missions.
Foreign forces were trained in small arms, crew serve, and small unit land based patrolling tactics, as well as techniques and procedures in maritime and riverine patrols.
As a SWCC, Chad trained and supported military, civilian law enforcement agencies, Third Country Nationals (TCNs) and Local Nationals (LNs) throughout Central and South America, as well as in the Middle East.
When it comes to business, entrepreneurial and startup advice for his fellow vets, Chad advises, “Know what the heck you are talking about. Whatever business you are getting into, do your due diligence. Make sure you run things by a lawyer. Pick the right tool for the right job. Pick the right guy for the right information. If you don’t know anything about business, get educated. It’s a language. If you don’t understand the language of business, you need to learn. Get educated before you start throwing money at something you don’t know.”
Chad also believes that vets are perfect candidates for creating their own businesses: veterans are used to structure, getting up at a certain time, and being held accountable.
“Everybody needs a reason to wake up in the morning and continue their day,” he says.
The other quality that Chad says is non-negotiable: a positive mental mindset.
“From the time you wake up until the time you go to bed, it’s all about your attitude,” he says. “Your attitude toward any particular situation can define your outcome. Attitude is paramount. In every situation, there is a bright light. You just have to find it. Stay positive.”
Attitude and preparedness extend to any emergency crisis as well. Although Chad acknowledges that terrorism has been going on for a long time, technology has changed the way we look at it and perceive it.
“It’s now in your face,” he says, referring to terrorism tragedies appearing on social media, “but you need to be able to do your due diligence and think on your own. And that’s what we try to do too, to think from a point of safety. Try to identify where the gunfire is coming from, see where the people are getting shot and how they are getting shot. It’s morbid, but you need to take that into account. These are key elements.”
911 Academy courses read like a recent tragic news recap: Active Shooter — Church, Active Shooter — Hotel, Active Shooter — Festival, and Home Defense. A sad state of affairs for our country, but 911 Academy provides the reality and the practical training that can best prepare us for — what up until now — has been the unexpected.
“The bad guys have a plan,” Chad says. “You need a plan too. What are you going to do to counteract it? How are you going to live to fight another day, to save your friends, your family, your loved ones? Don’t become a victim of your own circumstances. Get trained. Be informed.”
Click here to find out more about 911 Academy.
Written By: Ronald Sklar
Ron Sklar is a business blogger based in Brooklyn, NY. He writes blogs and related content for businesses and ecommerce sites all around the world.