It is the time of the year when hundreds of officer are currently in route to St. Louis for the International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Association (ILEETA) Conference. I have seen friends like Canada’s own Jason Der (#ILEETA2017), ILEETA’s unsung hero’s Jerry Alan, and Roger Benn indicate that they are in St. Louis ready to re-connect with friends, curriculum and the latest training trends. This is the first time in the past few years that I will be unable to attend. The conference agenda is packed with quality training.
Sessions – My Short List
In looking at the 2017 courses, these are the ones that I regret not being able to attend. David Sohm a local friend from Minnesota, teaching on Re-Creating a Stress Acclamation Training Model. Dave has the passion, the talent and knowledge to bring a great class together. I would truly appreciate the chance to pick his brain and understand his knowledge on stress related training.
I would certainly hope to attend Fletch Fuller’s session on tactical knife and duty use. Last year at the conference I had the pleasure of seeing Louis Krudo and his defensive tactics weapon and would really appreciate the chance to see how it is used, applied, and how it could be incorporated to law enforcement tactics. In looking at Kery Avery’s session on visuals and multi- sensory experience looks interesting and something that I am attempting to transition towards in my own instructional style and method. With recent law enforcement history dealing with consent decrees, Henry Lu’s session looks very topical and informative. Of course what would be an ILEETA Conference without sitting in on courses with Kevin Davis, Mike Brave, or Brian Willis. Jack Greer’s sessions on Excited Delirium/Sudden In-Custody Deaths and Laura Scarry’s sessions on body worn cameras is a must in today’s training environment.
The reality for me is that ILEETA is now a place to connect yearly with friends, confidants and of the course the REAL Brian Hill. All are friends that I have made as a result of the ILEETA conference. The conference is sometimes the only chance I have to connect with some friends in person. While Facebook and texting are great, nothing compares to sitting down having lunch, dinner, or drinks and really catching up. To hear their passion for the profession, what they are doing in the industry, and how dependent on each other we really are cannot never be substituted for anything else. These friendship truly transcend the conference and are the greatest legacies for some of the best law enforcement trainers in the world.
First Time Attendees
It is important to provide ideas to first time conference attendees so here are a few things that first time attendees should do. Attend the training, and connect in the halls with anybody, and everybody as much as you can. Just walk up and politely introduce yourself, and start chatting. Finally, have a good time and enjoy the conference for what it is, a chance to connect with some of the best trainers in the world.
To my good friends, and my new friends, please enjoy the conference. I look forward to seeing the pictures of the event on Facebook and through colleagues who will certainly rub it in my face that I am not there. Raise a glass, give a toast, get the meat sweats. Have a cigar (Roger), and enjoy the fellowship of the conference. It only comes once a year, and if you see Tom Engelmann, let him know that I have a great patch for him the next time I see him. If you see Thom Jackson, tell him that “Taser” is looking forward to meeting Mike.
I’ll miss everyone at ILEETA so think of me and the thousands of other trainers as you get uo every morning in St. Louis and work towards advancing law enforcement training to levels it has never been before.