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Who We Are

Who We Are

Tip of Spear is the premier academy for
physical security, personal safety and self-defence training
in Alberta, Canada.

We are:

One of the largest training centres serving all of Alberta.

Providers of instructor-led in-person and self-led virtual training.

Accredited trainers in physical security, private investigation, peace officer, and other protection careers.

Certified trainers in self-defence, situational awareness and other personal safety life skills.

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We are Métis owned and operated.

Better Business Bureau

We have a long-standing A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau.

Tip of Spear is a privately held corporation based out of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. We have been actively operating and serving all of Alberta since 2011. Tip of Spear has two owners, four support staff, fourteen instructors and 15 training programs (and growing). To learn more about our story, read our article Tip of Spear Celebrates 10 Years.

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Why are we different?

  • We truly care about our student's careers and personal safety. We want to walk with our students along their entire protection career journey, whether that's helping them advance in a specific career path or transition over to a new one. We want to equip them to help their communities stay safe and enable everyone to go home safe to their families at the end of the day.

  • Our expertise is training, and that is our entire focus and what we do best. We carefully select, or develop every training course we teach.

  • We are not a security guard company ourselves, which means that we can remain objective and we will never compete against your company for contracts.

  • We live and work in Alberta too, so we know what the security industry is like here and teach from that perspective, which gives you an advantage. 

  • We are flexible and adaptable to serve the needs of large and small employers. Whether you need your current training program evaluated and revamped, or the occasional instructor to cover for a staff instructor illness or injury, or focus on service and sales rather than training, we are here to help you achieve your goals. Please see Specialty Services for a full list of additional services.

Mission, Vision, Values

Our Vision

Our Mission

Our Values

We are dedicated to giving as many people as possible the opportunity to build the self-confidence and learn the skills to protect themselves and those they are responsible for, and ultimately enjoy a peaceful life.

To provide professional, practical, world-class, current, effective education in security, defensive tactics and self-defence to civilians and the protection industry, in order to keep not only themselves safe on and off the job, but the communities they live in and serve. 

Our company was founded on the values of: Courage, Determination, and Faith (Peace)


We passionately believe every life is precious and deserves to be safe and protected as a basic human right. 

Our Instructors

Our Instructors

Our certified trainers teach not just theory, but from their extensive real-world experience. We have decades of front line and leadership experience in the security, investigations and peace officer fields.

David Suffern, CPP, SAS-AP

Training Director and Krav Maga Instructor, Tip of Spear

Regional Director for Western Canada, IKMF Krav Maga


Dave has 30+ years of experience working on the first line of defense, leading teams and teaching in the corporate security, corrections, peace officer, third-party protection and self-defense fields. He has led security operations for many large organization in Edmonton, including Northlands and The Oilers.

He believes in servant leadership and continually educating himself, to provide the best to his students to help them, and the public, stay safe. A few of his certifications include:

  • Certified Protection Professional (CPP) professional designation with ASIS (American Society of Industrial Security)

  • Certified by the Solicitor General, to be accredited as a Trainer under the Government of Alberta Security Services and Investigators Regulation

  • Graduate Level 3, and certified instructor in IKMF Krav Maga (Israeli contact combat)

  • Certified instructor for the VIP Protection program (third-party protection program) with IKMF Krav Maga

  • Certified Canadian Firearms Safety Course instructor

  • 20+ year instructor of the HFRG Defensive Tactics (PPCT) program


Some of his other certifications to instruct, include Controlled F.O.R.C.E. Instructor level 1 and level 2, Spontaneous Knife Defense (PPCT), Rape Aggression Defense (RAD) (teaching women verbal and physical defensive tactics), OC Spray as well as Tactical Communications. He has also done numerous speaking engagements for different organizations in Alberta.

Other Instructors

Tip of Spear has several other regular instructors on staff.  These instructors all have extensive experience in the security services industry, are extremely knowledgeable in the material they teach, and are honest, full of integrity, and fun to be around.  Our staff are available to fill the needs our clients may have.

The "Tip of Spear" Name

The "Tip of Spear" Name

"Tip of the Spear" is a term that military tacticians use to reference the first combat force that punctures the enemy's initial lines of defense.  It is a proactive and reactionary team or force, which exists to provide security, protection, and assistance to the people and property under its care. As with a physical spear, the TOS doesn’t do all of the work, but without it, the spear itself is not a spear, but simply a blunt stick. The tip is the first to go in, the part the starts the process for the rest of the spear to do its job and bring down the insurgents. Those team members which are the leading edge of an incident, or potential problem, are considered to be the “Tip” of the spear.


In more recent usage, it means to be a trailblazer; the first to venture into a new endeavor. We are passionate about providing current, cutting edge training to these "first responders".


Where did the phrase "Point the Way" come from? 

"The real leader has no need to lead — he is content to point the way."

Henry Miller, "The Wisdom of the Heart" in The Wisdom of the Heart (1941).

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