AWARE was founded by a woman who had an experience that proved to her she was not physically strong enough to protect herself from someone intent on harming her. As part of the recovery from that experience, she carefully researched to learn what was self-defense options, to learn what was, and was not, truly effective. She was joined by a group of volunteers with extensive training and certification in a variety of self-protection options, and considerable teaching experience. These people now include:
Lyn Bates is a founding Board Member of AWARE. She has taken courses at Impact, Gunsite, Lethal Force Institute, Smith & Wesson Academy, and schools, for pepper spray, Persuader, and defensive driving. As a former competitive shooter, she participated in local and national competitions, including matches where street survival skills were measured. She has been a contributing editor of Women&Guns magazine where she published more than 100 articles, primarily on defensive strategies. She appeared in Cathryne Czubek’s 2013 documentary film "A Girl & A Gun." Lyn has helped thousands of women learn how to be safer from crimes ranging from minor harassment to serious assault. She is an expert on stalking and author of the book,
Safety for Stalking Victims: How to Save Your Privacy, Your Sanity, and Your Life. She loves working with people who want to know more about protecting themselves with guns, or without.
Roger L. is an AWARE Board Member, and Webmaster. He has trained at Defensive Training International, InSights Training Center, Gunsite, Lethal Force Institute, NRA, and Smith&Wesson Academy, and has completed Basic Training-Reserve/Intermittent Police Officer (M.C.J.T.C./N.E.R.P.I.) for MA. Roger has participated in National Tactical Invitational, Second Chance Combat Shoot, IPSC and other competitions. He was a contributing editor to Women&Guns magazine, and has also been published in The Police Marksman and Law and Order. He enjoys working with both beginning and advanced students, excels at diagnosing shooting issues which prevent advancement, enjoys helping folks with their Apple products, and is one of his condominium's trustees.
Jim R. is certified by the Massachusetts State Police to teach the NRA Basic Pistol class, and has done so for more than 10 years. He also coaches individuals. He has been trained by the NRA, SIG SAUER Academy, and the Northeastern Tactical School. He has participated in numerous IPSC and IDPA matches, and is a member of the Massachusetts Rifle Association, the Harvard Sportsmen’s Club, and GOAL. He enjoys giving beginners their first experience with guns.
Karen MacNutt, an AWARE Board Member, is a Massachusetts attorney with more than 30 years in private practice. She has a strong interest in firearms, and is an active rifle and pistol competitor. She serves as consulting attorney for the Second Amendment Foundation, the NRA, and GOAL, and also writes a legal column for Women&Guns magazine. She loves horses, and is a retired (Lt. Colonel) member of the National Guard. She has an office in Randolph, MA.
Lisa Steele is an AWARE Board Member and an appellate attorney who practices in both Massachusetts and Connecticut. She has special interest in, and expertise in lethal force issues. She has written briefs for lawyers ("Defending the Self-Defense Case") and articles for the public (“Owning and Carrying Non-Firearm Weapons”). Lisa organized an AWARE class on Courtroom Survival. She is co-chair of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) Forensic Evidence Committee. The mother of a daughter, she is especially interested in issues regarding firearms and children.