CITY OF TROY PD, MICHIGAN
From: Michael T Villerot
Sent: Friday, March 13, 2015 11:42 AM
Subject: W.L. Gore & Assoc. L.E. Seminar
I first wish to thank you for considering me in attending this seminar in Maryland with GORE (makers of GORE-TEX) and its co-host, Forum-Direct.
The seminar consisted of gathering law enforcement personnel from all around the U.S. and trying to obtain the needs and desires of officers and the outwear they use. Although it may seem trivial, GORE (and it representative host David Pacanowsky) and Forum-Direct CEO Tom McKown took very seriously the needs of law enforcement and believes as it currently stands are being sold inferior products by other manufactures. GORE provided us with textile demonstrations in the difference in waterproof, water resistant and water repellant and the standards that equate to each. Additionally, GORE provided us with demonstrations in moisture breathability and windproof materials and the standards that equate to each. This was made very clear from the start that these demonstrations and the information provided by GORE was not a sales pitch, as they do not sell their products. GORE insisted that this was an attempt to educate law enforcement and apply it to fabric and material purchases made by respective departments. After the demonstrations, GORE representatives gave attendees a tour of their fabric facility and the testing that each garment goes through to be considered a pass to be returned to a manufacture for fabrication. It was impressive to see the extensive testing process that their materials go through and even placed against a top law enforcement material manufacture such as 5.11. Particularly in the windproof test, it was clearly evident that the 5.11 material (although not advertised, nor geared toward) was inferior to the GORE material. At the end of the GORE seminar, Forum-Direct provided samples of products made by them with outerwear material from GORE (GORE-TEX/WINDSTOPPER) and how it measures up. They showed how proper layering can eliminate the need for bulky coats that sit in the rear of a patrol vehicles and also how lighter, less bulky garments can be much superior to those currently offered and sold to law enforcement. Forum-Direct owner/CEO Tom McKown was on-hand to provide attendees with samples (GORE-TEX coats, Danner boots and Windstopper base layers, gloves and coats) from their company to test on our own. They were at the seminar to educate, but also promote their outerwear products they attest are superior in quality and durability relative to current offerings. The seminar in whole was very informative and eye opening that there may be better outerwear products available to the law enforcement community at prices that may be equitable to inferior products.
Forum-Direct regional representative John Day made the offer to provided samplings of their outwear products that implement GORE for out testing at our request. John stated he would be also willing to provide a presentation to us and any other interested department’s in the event we require more information about their products. GORE representative David Pacanowsky also advised he would be willing to help with defining specifications (like the military does) for products in the event we were interested. There was no pressure placed on myself or any of the other law enforcement personnel at the seminar to go back to our respective department and sell these products. But after attending and seeing first-hand the products, how they are manufactured (in the US) and how they perform, I believe it’s in the best interest of our officers who do withstand the elements of Michigan while doing their job to consider these products and see if they are indeed superior to those currently offered by other manufactures.
I apologize for the long-windedness of this information, but I felt the need to tell you about the seminar that you allowed me to attend and the exceptional presentation/accommodations they provided. I do have presentations materials and personnel information if interested.