Johnny Smith

CEO and Co-Founder

Johnny began his personal protection career over 29 years ago in U.S. Special Operations, conducting undercover investigative assignments and operations through and beyond Desert Storm and around the globe. Since that time, he has ceaselessly pursued skills and expertise which have enabled him to safely navigate his government, military, and civilian clients through some of the most dangerous locations in the world.  Currently at the pinnacle of high-level security, Johnny is one of the most skilled professionals in his field.

After his time in Special Operations, he served twelve years as a law enforcement officer in the U.S., where he became certified in such skills as S.W.A.T., riot control, investigations, police training, instructor development, and unarmed self-defense instruction.  He served with such distinction as to be selected as the profile for his department’s large-scale, targeted recruiting campaign, and following his exemplary military and law enforcement service, Johnny was recruited as a contractor for the CIA, where he trained and served alongside truly extraordinary tactical personnel. Known for his quiet, professional demeanor and sincerity in his duties, he was soon recognized among even this elite group and was recruited to become a staff officer within the agency itself.

As a special agent and team leader for the Agency’s GRS Unit, he led these contracted special operations teams on missions throughout the world. During such missions, he oversaw up to 80 operators, delegating team assignments while also personally involved in the missions. Johnny also orchestrated the security role for Agency/government projects valued in excess of $70 million.  At the end of his tour, Johnny was selected to represent and recruit for the unit, seeking out potential applicants from the various Special Operations bases in the U.S. as well as mentoring and evaluating candidates chosen for the vetting and selection process.

Johnny’s strength lies, not just in his extensive skills and experience, but in his personal care for people and his continued pursuit of excellence.  He is a husband, father, and constant student of the warrior ethos. He credits his faith and his family as the strength behind everything he does, and he founded Sanctuary Consulting International with the goal of bringing the skills and knowledge learned in the government and military sectors to the private and humanitarian sectors.  Diligent in his maintenance of currency and proficiency, Johnny and part of his team currently reside and operate out of central Africa, where they work with government, business, and humanitarian organizations, helping them confront the challenges they face there. Additionally, he conducts training seminars for corporations and organizations across the globe.  He regularly coordinates and directs security for private individuals, locations, groups, or conferences of up to 700 participants, and in addition to being a published author and featured subject matter expert for several major security publications, his expertise is often sought after for travel security consultation and emergency response.  Amidst all of this, in his spare time, Johnny continues his path to professional excellence, a journey, he says, that never ends.

Finn

Director of Operations and Training

Finn has over 30 years experience in the security field serving in the British forces for ten years in conflict areas such as the Middle East and Northern Ireland.  Following his distinguished military service, he expanded his overseas scope, working in close protection capacities across Iraq in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Defense. In addition to field operations, he was responsible for weapons, tactics, and threat training for these operational units as well as designing and implementing threat assessments and protection plans.

Subsequent to his years in the Middle East, Finn worked in the U.S. at the international headquarters of two global organizations where he was responsible for creating, implementing, and maintaining global and site security programs and training for the organizations’ operations in both hostile and non-hostile environments in over 85 countries.  Along with being a graduate of Loughborough University Center for Hazard and Risk Management in the UK, and Master’s studies at Leicester University, Finn has completed extensive training and continues to utilize and pursue the most current theoretical and practical techniques from the highest-level institutions in order to instruct in counter-terrorism techniques, surveillance/counter-surveillance, and weapons and explosives search.

With operational experience in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and the United States, Finn has most recently conducted threat assessments and training for organizations across the globe in such varied locations as Tblisi, Australia, South Sudan, and Iraq.  Known for his warmth, humor, and dedication to faith and family, he is currently based in central Africa, bringing with him years of experience in working exceptionally well with both government and non-governmental organizations across Europe, the United States, Africa, and the Middle East.

JC

Research and Information Specialist

JC began working for the US government at the age of 17, carrying out research at the National Laboratories in the area of on-site and space-based monitoring systems in support of treaty verification for the Biological and Chemical Weapons Conventions.  Following 9/11 and the completion of her Bachelor’s degree in Biology, she joined the US Army, serving as a flight medic aboard the UH-60 Blackhawks in Kandahar and border regions of Afghanistan.  In addition to carrying out emergency medical evacuations during hostilities, she volunteered her downtime to working in outlying local clinics, treating both Afghan military and civilians.

It was during this time that she recognized the value of obtaining information prior to attacks in order to prevent casualties, and it was not long after graduating at the very top of her class, that she returned again to the Middle East, this time as a military counterintelligence agent.  During her time in the Middle East, JC carried out source and collection operations, team and independent counterintelligence investigations, and tactical human intelligence operations.

Known professionally for her keen insight, quiet diligence, and unassuming nature, subsequent private sector work took her to Europe, the US, and finally Africa. She currently uses her skills and knowledge to analyze risks and evaluate threats to civilian populations and organizations. She is also expanding her care in helping others through completion of her Master’s Degree in Disaster Management, Humanitarian Assistance, and Homeland Security with a concentration in Infectious Disease Epidemiology.

In today’s changing threat scape, security is of growing concern, even for organizations, individuals, and regions historically free of such challenges.  In a world where humanitarians, missionaries, and business and infrastructure concerns are increasingly targeted, Sanctuary’s mission is to train and protect those who would go out into the world to make it a better place.  Our team is made up of long-time professionals who understand and support the spirit and conviction of those who venture into unknown lands, and we understand the responsibility of equipping and enabling those who would travel into areas of risk.