Warriors, Guardians, Both or Something Different

Winning Mindset

PHOTO CREDIT — Artist, Jason Bullard. For my great art see nogreaterloveart.com

In response to highly publicized officer involved shootings, nation-wide protests, and calls for police reform, the Whitehouse created a task force to examine and make recommendations for 21st century policing. The members partnered law enforcement, community and non-profit organizers, and criminal justice scholars. The group held listening sessions and teleconferences around the country to hear testimony, gain input, and discuss and deliberate recommendations. The task force’s report included the recommendation,

“Law enforcement should embrace a guardian – rather than a warrior – mindset to build trust and legitimacy both within agencies and with the public.”

But what exactly does that mean? And, is it a good idea?

  • What is the warrior mindset in policing? When, why and how did it arise? How does this mindset translate into training, tactics, and culture?
  • What is the guardian mindset? Is it mutually exclusive with a warrior mindset?
  • Why are a growing number of police agencies moving to embrace a guardian mindset?
  • Do 21st century dangers justify warrior mindset training, tactics, and culture amongst civilian police?
  • If yes, how does the profession reconcile a warrior police culture with the principles of a democracy?
  • Can a guardian mindset, tactics, and culture acceptably prepare officers for the dangers to their and the public’s safety?
  • If some change in police mindset, tactics and culture is warranted, where will such change come from and how should it be implemented?
  • Would this change in mindset change how police interact with citizens and criminals?
  • What is the greatest force multiplier for officers and departments? What mindset best enhances that force multiplier?

These questions and their answers will be explored, along with what cops across the country are saying about policing today. Lastly, this training will explore a winning mindset for officers to face the challenges of 21st Century policing not just safely but with their spirits intact.


Here’s what some who have attended A Winning Mindset for 21st Century Policing have to say:

“The class exceeded my expectations. Val explains the need to embrace a “Guardian” mentality while maintaining a balance of officer safety in a genuine and convincing manner. She demonstrated that she understands the challenges we as law enforcement officers face every day and made useful recommendations on how we can change how we are perceived while remaining vigilant.” -Capt. Brett Mattson, Colorado State Patrol

“Bravo for this trainer! It is humanly impossible to nod or doze during Val’s seminars!  Absolutely the most energetic and rewarding learning experience in my 27 years as a police chief in five states.”  -Chief Randall Aragon, Fairbanks, Alaska

“I highly recommend it. All left the presentation at the end of the day feeling more fulfilled than when we began. Certainly you quickly gained an admirer in your ability to make the topic simply come alive! You are an amazing presenter and anyone willing to give of their time to listen will certainly be uplifted. Thanks for allowing me to be one of those people.” -Hinsdale County Sheriff Ron Bruce, Lake City, CO

“Program provided insight into warrior vs. guardian mindsets and appropriate employment of each. Program emphasized leadership for use of force standards and community education. Excellent presentation. Good comments and instruction on influence of social media and video recordings on 21st century policing.” -Plano (TX) PD, 2015 Enrichment Training attendee

“I thought it was a very thought-provoking discussion about a topic that should be discussed and trained on moving forward because it is here to stay. It was well-organized and planned. Multi-media presentation kept the program interesting. -Lt., Plano (TX) PD 2015 Enrichment Training

“A timely, insightful and on-point presentation for our ever changing profession. Val brings the conversation to the forefront, engaging for all.” -Sheriff KC Hume, 2016 County Sheriffs of Colorado Conference


Book Val today!