Our Training Team
Sgt. Don Gulla
National Training Director
Don Gulla served for 33 years with the King County (WA) Sheriff’s Office, where he spent the majority of his career in CIT, HNT, full-time SWAT, and training development and administration. Prior to retiring, Don coordinated unified training and mental health co-response initiatives for all CIT programs in the Seattle-King County metropolitan region. He specializes in developing and delivering CIT, de-escalation, and other training programs that integrate social, tactical, and trust-building skills. Don has an international reputation for innovative approaches to creating safe hands-on techniques that build on procedural justice concepts while ensuring sound officer safety. He is a certified instructor in force options, firearms, baton, crowd control, SIRT pistol, active shooter response, mental health first aid, CIT force options, CIT youth, and less-lethal weapons.
Don was a Taser Coordinator for the County Sheriff’s Office. He developed and implemented the Gulla’s Angled Drive Stun, which improved the Taser 3-point drive stun. Don is the Founder of Arrestling Force Options Training Groups and has written the Advanced Ground Survival and Advanced Weapon Retention Training Manuals. Don has been a martial artist for over 44 years and is a 5-time World Police and Fire Games Gold Medalist in Karate.
Don has presented at the Master Taser, International Law Enforcement and Trainer’s Association, International Association of Law Enforcement Firearm Instructors and the International Crisis Intervention Association Conferences.
Assistant National Training Director
Mike O'Neill has over 30 years of service as a deputy and police officer with three different law enforcement agencies in Washington State. His assignments included patrol, ERT/SERT, traffic, marine patrol, defensive tactics instructor, and Washington State Basic Law Enforcement Academy Instructor. Mike also served as Chief Deputy in charge of the Lewis County Jail and is a certified Firearms and Master Defensive Tactics Instructor.
Mike retired from police service in 2012 to become director of the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission firearms training program. He re-wrote the firearms training program for both the basic Academy and advanced training programs, including SWAT and sniper courses. Mike’s innovative curriculum introduced new training methods for close-quarters combat marksmanship, integrating defensive tactics and shooting, and decision-making.
During his time at CJTC, Mike served as subject matter expert and trainer for the DARPA SSIM Project, out of which Polis’ T3™ training system was first developed. He conducted training sessions led by various police, military, and civilian team members on best practices for handling high-risk, high-stakes operational situations that require a strong balance of tactical and interpersonal communications skill. Mike is also US Marine Corps veteran.
Sgt. (ret.) Robert Bardsley served for over 35 years with the King County (WA) Sheriff's Department. After initial assignments in Patrol and the Proactive Policing Unit, Robert served on the Green River Task force and was a part of the team responsible for tracking down the most prolific serial killer in U.S. history. He later completed assignments as a Detective in the Sexual Assault Unit, and then as Department Rangemaster, responsible for all firearms training.
Rob then served as an instructor at the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission, where he instructed recruit classes in defensive tactics, criminal investigations, firearms, and patrol procedures.
After leaving academy duty, Rob completed additional assignments in Patrol and Investigations before serving as a school resource officer (SRO) at several large high schools until he retired from the Sheriff's Department in 2015.
After his retirement, Rob joined the firearms training program as a Firearms Instructor from the Criminal Justice Training Commission. Rob has been a long-time practitioner of ground survival tactics and has many years of experience developing and training both empty-hand and armed defensive techniques.
Dr. Marc Brown
Dr. Brown serves as a use of force and control tactics instructor at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC), and is also a senior instructor and subject matter expert for Polis Solutions specializing in de-escalation, Constitutional policing, diversity, and community trust-building. He is a fourteen-year police veteran, having served primarily with the Charleston (SC) Police Department in a variety of assignments, including intelligence/federal task force operations, and community relations in historically marginalized African-American neighborhoods. Dr. Brown holds a Ed.D., and completed his doctoral research on the relationship between leadership and patrol officers’ work performance. He is passionate about using his academic and practical skills to improve trust and safety between police and communities of color.
Marc has received several awards and has been recognized for his work ethic and dedication. In 2007, he was named Deputy of the Month by the Charleston County Sheriff's Office. In 2008, Marc was granted the Award of Merit from The Fraternal Order of Police. In the same year, he was named Officer of the Year by both the Hanahan Police Department and the Hanahan Exchange Club. In 2016, Marc received a Special Recognition Award from the Charleston County Sheriff's Office for his participation in a sexual assault investigation. The Charleston City Police Department honored Marc in 2017 with a Special Recognition Award for his actions during an active shooter incident.
Marc is a member of the Pershing Rifles and Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity. He served three years in the Air Force Reserves and has achieved the rank of Brown Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.
Lt. William Gervin
Lieutenant William Gervin has been with the Virginia Beach Police Department for 16 years. His past assignments include: Academy Fitness Coordinator, Police Academy Instructor, Police Selection Officer, Community Policing, Mobile Tactics,
Bike & Motor Patrol, Patrol Sergeant, Recruiting and Selection Sergeant, Detective Bureau Sergeant, and now Operations Lieutenant/Shift Commander.
William has completed the FBI National Academy First Line Supervisor School, Leadership in Police Organizations (LPO), Fair and Impartial Policing (FIP), and other leadership training. He instructs LPO and FIP as well.
William earned a Master's Degree in Public Administration from Troy University in 2012, has been a DCJS certified Defensive Tactics Instructor since 2007, and serves on the Use of Force Committee for his department. He has been involved in martial arts (Muay Thai, BJJ, and wrestling) for years and has competed in each.
Lt. Gervin extracts his knowledge from martial arts and uses it to help train police recruits to ensure their safety on the streets. William helped to mend relationships between the community and the police department and served as an ambassador and public speaker on the behalf of the Virginia Beach Police Department.
Trak Silapaduriyang has served as a police officer with the Chicago Police Department (CPD) for 17 years. He is currently a doctoral candidate at DePaul University and holds a master’s degree in criminal justice. Trak serves as Senior Instructor for the CPD Education and Training Academy. In this capacity, he provides training for police recruits, continuing education for CPD officers, and training of new instructors. He instructs on all aspects of the use of force and tactical safety courses and developed the current curriculum for tactical safety/officer safety and survival instruction. Trak provides first-hand guidance in the use of force and tactics through hands-on judgment training scenarios involving role-playing exercises and force-on-force. He is an expert witness on training, policy, and use of force for the federal civil rights litigation section of the Corporation Counsel, testifying on behalf of Chicago PD and the city of Chicago.
Trak’s expertise in police use of force and tactics has also been recognized internationally. He was selected by the United States Department of State to train and advise Thailand and Vietnam police officers/instructors on training reform with an emphasis in the areas of “preservation of life, human rights, de-escalation techniques, procedural justice and police legitimacy.” In this role, he consulted with the Royal Thai Police Executives and key members of the police education bureau to develop a use of force policy; developed the country’s first police training manual; developed training programs and corresponding materials for patrol officers, including use of force, officer safety and survival, vehicle stops, and scenario-based training development.