Texas Law Shield Range Affiliate Launches Firearms and Self-Defense Training Academy

Matt Lillis, Director of Training at the Defender Outdoors Training Academy. Photo courtesy of Defender Outdoors
Matt Lillis, Director of Training at the Defender Outdoors Training Academy. Photo courtesy of Defender Outdoors

Fort Worth–based Defender Outdoors Shooting Center has launched Defender Training Academy, a firearms and self-defense training program at the company’s state-of-the-art indoor shooting center located at 2900 Shotts Street. Defender Outdoors is an enrolled facility for Texas Law Shield.

In conjunction with the launch of the training academy, Matt Lillis, a seven-year veteran of the United States Air Force with a distinguished service record, has been hired as Director of Training.

Since opening in February 2016, the Defender Outdoors Shooting Center has quickly become the premier indoor range facility and shooting sports retail store not only Fort Worth, but throughout North Texas.

“Our customers rave about the quality of our facility, our high standard of customer service and the professionalism of our staff,” says Will James, President of Defender Outdoors. “The Defender Training Academy is the next evolution in our commitment to empowering our community members with the knowledge and confidence to defend themselves and their loved ones, to hunt or compete with firearms, and to have fun with firearms in a safe and responsible manner.”

Defender Training Academy will offer a comprehensive firearms and self-defense training curriculum, which will focus on scenario-based training. In addition to Defender’s already-popular License to Carry and introductory courses, the training academy will offer advanced concealed carry courses, situational awareness and self-defense seminars, as well as tactical, law enforcement and private security training.

“The goal of the Defender Training Academy is to create an environment where individuals can learn and build the necessary skills to be determined, decisive and dynamic through the simulation of real world scenarios,” said Lillis.

During his service with the Air Force, Lillis served primarily in the role of Security Forces Officer, where he held a variety of positions critical to base and personnel security such as Officer in Charge of Training and Resources, Flight Commander, Weapons and Tactics Officer, Wing Anti-Terrorism Officer, Operations Officer and Chief of Security Forces for a deployed location.

He and his teams have completed more than 120 combat missions and worked to establish Emergency Services Teams and develop training programs for airmen deploying to combat operations. For his efforts and effectiveness during his service, Lillis was awarded the Bronze Star.

Following his Air Force career, Lillis has continued his passion for training as Lead Instructor of Guardian Angel PMC, a combat firearms and law enforcement training group.

“We are very proud to announce Matt as Director of Training for the Defender Training Academy,” says Chris Baker, Chief Operating Officer of Defender Outdoors. “His professionalism, commitment to excellence in training, and ability to teach shooters of all experience and skill levels makes him perfect for the job.”

Defender Training Academy classes are available now at the Defender Outdoors Shooting Center, located at 2900 Shotts Street off University Drive and White Settlement Road. Open seven days a week, the facility is located two miles west of downtown Fort Worth.

For more information on Defender Training Academy and the other classes available, visit DoShooting.com or call 817-935-8377.

Defender Outdoors is a Fort Worth-based shooting center, retail and e-commerce store that specializes in shooting sports equipment and accessories and is steadily growing in popularity with the law enforcement, hunting and shooting sports communities.

The first of its kind in the region and the largest in Texas, there are several unique areas within the 43,000 square foot indoor shooting center, including:

  • 30 lanes dedicated to pistol and rifle shooting
  • a 2,500 square foot Simunition™ shoot house
  • a simulator room
  • classrooms

and an expansive retail center complete with the most popular firearms, optics, ammunition and accessories for hunting, law enforcement, sport shooting and personal and home defense.

Other amenities of the shooting center include a full-time gunsmith, a 785-ton HVAC system, private event space, lounge and VIP area with concierge service, plus regularly scheduled training and firearm safety classes for all levels of shooters.

Defender Outdoors is a sister company to Defender Supply, a provider of vehicle modifications and accessories to law enforcement agencies.