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You can contact Tony Scotti via the TSVDI

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lesson I learned from that experience was the
value of branding.
After I went into semi-retirement, I became
a consuILanL Ior Mercedes Eenz, and aIso
did some vehicle testing - enough to keep
me occupIed. In 2001 a roup oI IrIends oL
together and put together a consortium
LLaL wouId oIIer LLe "BcoLLI MeLLod" oI
instruction. The training was going semi-OK
but about ten months after it all started, my
wIIe oI 84 years suddenIy and unexpecLedIy
passed away. Interesting... the name of
LLIs maazIne Is TouL TaIk, I can say wILL
certainty that when you have been with
someone Ior 84 years and LLey suddenIy
and unexpectedly pass away the word tough
doesnt apply.
Eventually the consortium went their
separate ways; one of the original members
oI LLe roup was Joe AuLera. In 2008 Joe,
his business partner Larry Side and I sat
down and came up with a plan. Both Joe and
Larry decided they wanted to make the huge
commitment to continue with the tradition of
the old Scotti School. I expressed my belief
that it would be a daunting task. The plan
consisted of going back to the old way of doing
things. From that meeting Joe and Larry
created the Tony Scottis Vehicle Dynamics
Institute (TSVDI).
Ten years later, in a typical ten-week time
span TBVDI wIII conducL 28 prorams wILL
210 sLudenLs Irom corporaLIons, overnmenL
agencies, and high net worth protection
teams. Those training programs will be
conducted in four states in the US, and in
three foreign countries. So my guess is that
meeLIn In back 2008 BnaIIy worked ouL 0K!
TSVDI is working with and training the
same clients the Scotti School worked
wILL In LLe '70s and '80s. TBVDI Is oIn Lo
todays hotspots; the end result is that the
same clients have been sending their people
Lo us Ior 40 years. TLe quesLIon LLaL bes
answerIn Is, WLy do LLey come back Lo us?
The answer is relatively simple. Firstly the
market has to feel they have a problem that
needs to be solved, and for decades, statistics
have indicated that the overwhelming
majority of security incidents involving
corporaLe execuLIves and LILproBIe
individuals, including government and
military, have occurred while the targeted
individual was in or around their vehicle. The
safety and security of the vehicle occupants
during this most dangerous period of time
has been, and is, the responsibility of the
securILy drIver. Eor 40 years our cIIenLs Lave
demanded a training program that mitigates
this risk. This is another one of those
common sense LLIns, II we dId noL IuIBI
those demands there would not have been a
Scotti School and there would not be a TSVDI.
This brings up the next question that begs
answerIn, WLaL skIIIs mILIaLe rIsk? AII I
can do is tell you what worked and is working
for us.
Firstly, driving is a measurable skill, the
clients want know if the person holding on
to the steering wheel can drive. They want
- actually demand - we supply an objective
measurement of driving skill. We offer our
clients a simple training paradigm; all driving
scenarios, no matter how simple or complex,
are an exercise in the laws of physics. Makes
no difference if its high-risk, low-risk, or what
government, military, and police agencies
think, the driver and their adversary must
live within them. It also makes no difference
what type of vehicle is being driven, or why
its being driven, or who is driving it; when it
comes to the laws of physics - it is what it is.
Our training ensures the student leaves with
an understanding of the factors that dictate a
vehicles operational limits and those factors
that dictate a drivers individual limitations.
An abIIILy Lo reconIze LLe IndIcaLors and
warning signs that a vehicle is being operated
at or near its limits, and the skill to keep
the vehicle within those limits, and to do
so within a very short time frame. All this
measured accurately with test equipment
including the use of on-board computers.
The second issue is security. Our clients
understand the criticality of Surveillance
Detection. Working in the armpit places of
the world tells me that in many situations
surveillance detection is not just the best
protection; it may be the only protection.
Again our clients demand their security
personnel learn how, when and where an
attacker is likely to conduct surveillance
as well as how to plan, manage and conduct
effective surveillance detection operations.
Well, that was the journey and the how and
why I am at the destination, although my
status is semi-retirement for me it is not
LLe BnaI desLInaLIon. WLIIe In LLIs pLase oI
my journey I have been able to take a hard
look at the industry that has been very
ood Lo me boLL personaIIy and BnancIaIIy.
What I see is that the industry is changing
at a rapid rate - not good - not bad but
different. Whats different is the amount of
people in the business and the training they
receive. The general feeling in the industry
is; I have spent all this time and money to
attend training programs, so of course I am
cerLIBed." WeII, LLaL Is noL Low LLe concepL
oI cerLIBcaLIon works. TLe sImpIe Issue Is
that you cannot enter a training program
with little or no experience and at the end
oI Bve, seven, or wLaLever days IaLer, and be
cerLIBed by LLose wLo Lave conducLed LLe
Bo, aL 78, I Lave decIded Lo creaLe an
assocIaLIon LLaL wIII oIIer cerLIBcaLIons In
securILy drIver/secure LransporLaLIon. TLe
cerLIBcaLIon wIII requIre a IeveI oI experIence
coupled with a test of knowledge and a test
oI skIII. My oaI Is Lo Ieverae LLe 40 years
of working with the corporate community, to
Increase LLe IeveI oI awareness oI cerLIBed
security drivers in the market.
Bo wLaL sLarLed In LLe earIy '70s Las moved
through the decades protecting people from
violence. There will be no cure for violence
here in the US, or in other countries and
people will always need protection. Hence
I am conBdenL LLaL IuLure oI LLe IndusLry,
and the people in it, will be here for decades
to come.
At 73, and after fifty years in the business, Toni Scotti is
still running TONY SCOTTI
one of the most well-known, prestigious protective driving
schools in the world.
I'm 78, semIreLIred, and oIn on
my BILL decade In LLe busIness.
One of the advantages of age
(and so Iar, LLe onIy advanLae!)
is that I have been witness to
the evolution of the industry.
As it has been said many times;
its not the destination, its the
journey. Eor me IL Las been a 40
year journey and, looking back at
my upbringing, it is not a journey
I wouldve ever expected I would
have taken.
The journey starts in East Cambridge, Mass-
achusetts, as a child of Italian immigrants.
I did not know it at the time, but growing up
in a tough environment gave me life lessons
that served my journey well.
In LLe '60s I worked In a sLoe IacLory, a bakery,
as a labourer and an electronic technician. It
was the shoe factory that convinced me that
I needed to upgrade my education. I went
to college at night and eventually received
my Degree in Electrical Engineering from
Northeastern University.
In the process of getting my degree, the
military came calling. Since I had a few years
of college, and had experience in electronics,
I was assigned to a unit that worked with
communications and trained with Cuban
nationals. I thought nothing of it at the time,
but that training turned out to be a life-
changing event.
WhenI got out of the military I continued with
my education, graduated from Northeastern,
and went to work as an engineer and hated
every mInuLe oI IL. JusL noL Ior me! In LLe
LLe earIy '70s, wILL a wIIe and cLIId, I ave
up working as an engineer and followed my
passion for cars and racing and got into the
business of building and working on race
Part of working on race cars was taking the
cars to the track and setting them up for
the drivers. That usually included helping
them with their driving. One of the drivers I
was working with had a pit crew made up of
poIIce oIBcers. TLe cops asked II I couId LeIp
them with their departments driver training
program, I did, and ended up actually doing
the training, and found that I really liked
In LLe earIy '70s I ran InLo an oId mIIILary
friend, a Cuban I had met during my training.
He IIved In VenezueIa and was a consuILanL
to the government. I told him I was training
law-enforcement agencies and from that he
asked me II I wouId o VenezueIa Lo conducL
training programs for the government there.
In VenezueIa aL LLe LIme, veLIcIe ambusLes
were second to soccer as the national pastime
and LLey needed Lo Bnd a way Lo mILIaLe LLe
WLen I oL Lo VenezueIa I spenL LIme anaIysIn
the attacks and, using the data I had collected,
applied the science of engineering to vehicle
attacks and created a mathematical model.
The end result was that the training worked,
and I spent a great deal of time in there
conducLIn LraInIn. WLIIe In VenezueIa I meL
security personnel from US oil companies.
They asked if I could do the same training
Ior LLeIr securILy Leams In VenezueIa, and
other South America countries. At this point
I Bured ouL I was a LraInIn company and
needed a name so I called it the Scotti School
of Defensive Driving, but the clients called us
the Scotti School, so that was the name we
went by.
At that time, the concept of protective
driving and executive protection in the
corporate environment was almost unheard
of, but while working with the oil companies
I met a security consultant who convinced
many of his clients to take a chance on this
new and innovative concept of protecting
LLeIr personneI wLIIe In a veLIcIe. In LLe '70s
he and I conducted a program in Iran, at the
time a little known country, as a US company
in Iran had some of their engineers killed in a
vehicle ambush which had sent shock waves
throughout the corporate community. I kept
on getting more requests to conduct training,
and over a span of seven to ten years a
business was born.
Bo wLaL sLarLed In VenezueIa spread
throughout South and Central America, and
then to the Middle East, Europe and Asia,
and from that I started training corporate
security personnel working in the US.
In LLe '80s and '90s LLe BcoLLI BcLooI rew aL
an exponenLIaI raLe and by LLe end oI LLe '90s
our cIIenLeIe IncIuded 8S% oI LLe Lop EorLune
S00 companIes, I Lad LraveIIed Irom eILL Lo
Len counLrIes a year, and Lad 200 corporaLe
clients. We were conducting programs for
vehicle manufactures, law enforcement
agencies, and police, military and government
trainers. The programs varied from high-risk
convoys to off-road vehicles. One of the more
unique programs was designing training for
18wLeeI armoured Lrucks. I was asked by
the client; Can you do a boot-leggers turn in
an 18wLeeI veLIcIe?" Ey LLe way LLe answer
Is no, buL LryIn IL was excILIn!
In 1997, aL S7 years oId, I decIded Lo seII LLe
company and put my retirement plan into
pIace and In 1999, I decIded Lo caII IL quILs and
retire. However, selling the company turned
out to be a huge error. The folks that purchased
the company had no understanding of the
security or training business and in less than
two years came close to dismantling what I
had worked decades to create. They wanted
to re-invent the company in their image. The
Bummer 2018 tough talk magazine 31 30 tough talk magazine Bummer 2018
Tony Scotti Tony Scotti

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