The endorsements below were given completely voluntarily. The reviewers were given nothing in return for their endorsement(s). Each person signed a document attesting to this fact.

Personnel from the following entities / states / countries have provided endorsements:

The United States Army Special Forces, The United States Army Military Police, Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Archdiocese of Chicago, British Overseas Territory of Bermuda, Canada (Anishinabek Police Service), Canada (Canadian Criminal Intelligence Service), Canada (Peel Regional Police), Chicago HIDTA (High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area), Chicago Police Department, Conneticut, Cook County States Attorneys Office, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Institute for Adolescent Development, Intercon Security, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Midwest Gang Investigators Association, Minnesota, Minnesota Gang Strike Force, Mississippi, Missouri, National Education Service, National Gang Crime Research Center, New Jersey HIDTA (High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area), New Mexico, New York HIDTA (High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area), New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Rhode Island (Attorney Generals Office), Southwest Multi Regional Gang Investigators Association, Tennessee, United States Marshals, United States Probation, Virginia, Washington, DC, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

The Street Gang Identification Manual

Gang Specialist Certification Course

Essential Elements of Handgun Skills

Advanced Elements of Handgun Skills

Advanced Elements of Handgun Skills II

Reduced / No Light Elements of Handgun Skills


"The Street Gang Identification Manual"

"It is simply awesome. I can already see how it will be put to good use. I definitely got my money's worth with this book. It is VERY professionally done."
- James A. Rosales, SFC, 1st Special Forces Group, United States Army

"The Street Gang Identification Manual is the most thorough and complete listing of gang symbols, graffiti, terminology and identifiers that I have ever seen. This manual provides important information that is essential to any and all law enforcement, judicial and educational organizations dealing with gangs."
-Derek Richey, Director of Outreach, National Educational Service

"A wealth of intelligence information for all law enforcement and educational personnel."
- Robert J. Simandl, Midwest Gang Investigators Association

"A superior working tool to aid in the identification of gangs, their members, terminology, and graffiti."
- Chief Richard Schryver, Southwest Multi-Regional Gang Investigators Association

"An essential survival tool for the safety of students, staff, and the community. Each school across the country should equip its administrators, deans, guidance departments and all department heads with this manual as an essential safety procedure in the same way disaster manuals are required for all personnel."
- Dr. John Mayer, Director, Institute of Adolescent Development

"I highly recommend it for anyone working in the field of criminal justice."
- Dr. George W. Knox, Editor, Journal of Gang Research, National Gang Crime Research Center

"With almost thirty years experience with the Chicago Police Department, I found The Street Gange Identification Manual to be a comprehensive factual manual that no law enforcement officer should be without."
- Victor J. Grimm, Chicago Police Officer

"The Street Gang Identification Manual is a unique volume, unprecedented in nature, containing invaluable information about the identification of street gangs."
- Assistant States Attorney, Felony Trial Division, Cook County States Attorneys Office


Gang Specialist Certification Course

"The best class I ever attended in my career. I will forever speak highly of this class to my department and other departments - thank you for the opportunity to attend this class."
- Chad Potenziani, Patrolman, Loves Park Police Department, Loves Park, Illinois

"This course exemplifies what a gang course should be. Frank thoroughly teaches what is needed to know about gangs. I highly recommend that anyone in law enforcement take this course. After three days, you leave comfortably stating you have been certified as a gang specialist, and have the knowledge to take with you in your law enforcement career."
- Lorena Phillips, CIA/Investigator, Cook County Sheriff, Chicago HIDTA

"Definitely the toughest gang class I have ever taken. If you think you know gangs you need to take this class. I promise you will be surprised about how much you will learn."

- Timothy A Behne, Gang Intelligence Officer, North College Hill Police Dept., North College Hill, Ohio

"Great Class! I highly recommend it for anyone involved in criminal justice who wants to learn about Midwest gangs. Frank Petrone knows his stuff and communicates it well. An outstanding instructor who stays with you after you have graduated."
- Jeffery P. Rush, Deputy Sheriff/Bailiff, State of Alabama, County of Jefferson

"This is the best training I have ever received regarding gangs. Great presentation!"
- Stan L. Nicholson, Student Safety and Security / Gang Coordinator. United States Department of Labor - Job Corps, Limestone, Maine

"The instructor’s knowledge of the People and Folks nations is impressive. The instructor is by far the most knowledgeable person I have ever met concerning the People and Folks nations. The instructional methods are very sound, precise, and methodical. The knowledge I have obtained in these past few days will greatly aid our gang training."
- James A. Rosales, SFC, United States Army, 1st Special Forces Group, Ft. Lewis, Washington

"I have been to quite a few conferences and courses. This is by far the most educational course I have attended. The information you reicve is tremendous. You will not find a course taught on people and folks that is better. The money you spend is worth every penny and the time spent worth every minute. Thank you for the opportunity to to expand my knowledge of Midwest gangs."
- Scott C. Barfield, United States Army, 1st Military Police Brigade, 51st Military Police Detachment, Military Police Investigations, Fort Lewis, Washington

"This course was a pleasure to attend. The information on gangs in the Midwestern United States was very informative and very applicable to my job as a gang investigator in the United States Military. The method of instruction and material covered was well organized and the instructor a wealth of knowledge."
- Irvin B. DeRoche', United States Army, 1st Military Police Brigade, 51st Military Police Detachment, Military Police Investigations, Fort Lewis, Washington

"A must for law enforcement officials who intend to work in gang units."
- Luciano Bentenuto, National Special Projects Coordinator, Criminal Intelligence Service, Canada

"This course expanded my knowledge 100%. I can’t wait to get back to my department and apply the knowledge I obtained from the course. I would highly recommend this course to any law enforcement official who deals with gangs. In the near future, each department may not have a choice."
- J. Shane Walker, Corrections Officer, Delaware County Sheriffs Department, Muncie, Indiana

"GPI’s Gang Specialist Certification Course simply, directly and thoroughly uncovers the framework of the Folks and People nations - period. Its description of the other major gangs in the United States is second to none. The information is invaluable, especially when addressing the issue of prosecuting these gangs. Don’t miss this class. Frank Petrone is first rate."
- James R. Baum, Special Assistant Attorney General, Attorney Generals Office, State of Rhode Island

"I firmly believe that anyone working in a gang related field would be remiss to not attend this gang specialist certification course. It was three days of valuable information and training that I have not seen the likes of during 15 years of law enforcement. Great job!!"
- Daniel E. Gannon, Sergeant, Providence Police Department, Providence Rhode Island

"I would say this course is a must to better understand the way gangs in the Midwest work. The course material will better assist any officer to understand how gangs work as well as how to identify gang members."
- Andrew H. Grascia, Investigator, Westchester County District Attorneys Office, New York / New Jersey HIDTA

"I would recommend this course to all law enforcement, especially gang investigators. Frank Petrone is an excellent instructor with a wealth of knowledge. Great job Frank!"
- Michelle Y. Pollard, Detective, Pitt County Sheriffs Office, Greenville, North Carolina

"One of the best classes I have taken. I think every officer should take this course. It was a very challenging class."
- Douglas A. Ahle, Patrol Officer, Mille Lacs Tribal Police Department, Onamia, Minnesota

"One of the most informative classes I have ever attended; useful information to help our department combat street gangs in our area."
- Justin D. Churchill, Patrol Office, Mille Lacs Tribal Police Department, Onamia, Minnesota

"A very good in depth class. The nuts and bolts of People and Folks nations."
- Pete Badker, Investigator, Minnesota Gang Strike Force

"Excellent training for new police officers wanting to become familiar with a wide variety of gang information."
- David Allen, Winona Police Department, Minnesota Gang Strike Force

"This was a tough class that covered everything and anything about the people and folks nations. I found it very challenging and feel proud about completing it. I would recommend this course to anyone who has these gangs, or the threat of these gangs, in their area."
- James Quick, Investigator, Knoxville Police Department, Knoxville, Tennessee

"Extremely valuable information. Presented in a clear focused manner. Highly recommended to investigators where Midwest gangs are present."
- Paul J. Parizek, Gang Specialist, West Des Moines Police Department, West Des Moines, Iowa

"A great class for law enforcement. Lots of information given in a quick but well thought out lecture. Class size allows for individual attention."
- Greg Behning, Police Officer/Gang Unit, Davenport Police Department, Davenport, Iowa

"A great school! This is definitely not a school full of war stories and filler material. Everything one learns here will be useful."
- William Hurt, Police Officer Gang Unit, Davenport Police Department, Davenport, Iowa

"My field of expertise lie within the southwest hispanic street gangs and prison groups - Frank has really brought me up to par on the Midwest street gangs, Excellent Instructor."
- Robert P. Martinez, Gang Unit Detective, Bernalillo County Sheriffs Department, Albuquerque, New Mexico

"The gang specialist certification course given by Mr. Frank Petrone is an excellent example of clear and concise teaching. The information conveyed during the course was also complete and exhaustive. Frank is an effective and fair teacher."
- Jill S. Bonnett, Master of Social Work, Certified Advanced Practice Social Worker, Sheboygan, Wisconsin

"Excellent course! A great deal of information packaged into three days. Frank knows his shit and proves it with handout material and "off the top of his head" knowledge about street gangs in the Midwest. This course is a must for any police officer, parole agent or federal agent working the street. Thanks for the knowledge Frank!
- Hugh M. Roop, Sergeant, Pontiac Police Department, Pontiac, Illinois

"I received more information in the course than I have collected in 8 years on the job."
- Ed Sexton, Detention Officer, Champaign County Court Services, Champaign County, Illinois

"I feel that every officer in the State of Illinois and or other states should attend. It is a fasted paced class that will help make fast and critical decisions when dealing with gang members and gang activity. You will definitely walk away with a strong knowledge of street gangs."
- Michael P. Gordon, Patrol Officer, Riverside Police Department, North Riverside, Illinois

"Very good instruction. The first day of class I was skeptical of being able to identify the numerous gangs. The teaching style of the instructor was the only way I was able to successfully complete the class. I would highly recommend this course to any individual that deals with gangs on any level."
- Richard A. Juster, Detective, Wilmington Police Department / Will County Gang Unit, Will County, Illinois

"Frank M. Petrone's class is a must for anyone working in the law enforcement profession. The class is a must for any prosecutor in a felony courtroom. The class is an indispensable crash course in learning street gang identifiers, including names, colors, signs, symbols, and graffiti. All of the research, hard work and enthusiasm of the instructor shows. Way to go!"
- Assistant States Attorney, Felony Trial Division, Cook County States Attorney's Office

"The most detailed gang class I ever attended. Every police officer who wants to know about gangs in their community must take this course."
- Lane Niemann, North Riverside Police Department, North Riverside, Illinois

"Frank has great knowledge about the gangs. It was the most interesting class/course that I have attended in my career."
- Glenn Brothen, Oak Lawn Police Department, Oak Lawn, Illinois

"Thanks, Frank! The class made me work hard and really heightened my understanding and knowledge of street gangs. It should prove to benefit me greatly."
- Gina M. Luby, Researcher, Illinois Attorney Generals Office, Gang Crime Prevention Center

"A must have class for all Police Officers. The most informative up to date class I have ever attended. A fast paced no nonsense class."
- James N. Cook, Deputy Sheriff, Lake County Sheriffs Office, Lake County, Illinois

"Thought the class was easy to understand and easy to follow. Instructor knows the information like the back of his hand. Instructor was encouraging."
- Carissa Santiago, Patrol Officer, North Riverside Police Dept., North Riverside, Illinois

"An excellent and intense program to help police officers effectively and accurately identify street gang members."
- Joseph Mitchell, Investigator, Orland Park Police Department, Orland Park, Illinois

"It was a positive experience, informative and certainly comprehensive. I feel now I have a better understanding of the many elements that surround gang activity. I see this going hand-in-hand with the pastoral dimension of my work (ministry)."
- Rev. Anthony B. Pizzo, Pastor, St. Clare of Montefalco Church, Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago

"The class was very informative and moved at a steady, progressive pace. The instructor was knowledgeable and had practical experience. His enthusiasm could be seen and carried through into his teachings."
- Michael Eck, North Riverside Police Department, North Riverside, Illinois

"Comprehensive instruction in gangs will be invaluable on the street. The information will be useful every day."
- Ross W. Finnelly, Oak Lawn Police Department, Oak Lawn, Illinois

"This class is a must for officers who need to be able to identify gang members, symbols, and graffiti."
- Anthony M. Garvey, Sergeant, North Riverside Police Department, North Riverside, Illinois

"I would recommend this course to all Police."
- James J. Bails, Investigator, North Riverside Police Department, North Riverside, Illinois

"I think this was a great course. It provided me with a lot of very valuable information that I will be able to apply in the field. Instructor Frank Petrone was very detailed about everything he was teaching us, and found time to answer all questions. I would strongly recommend this class to any law enforcement official."
- Michael Jurak, Operations Supervisor, Intercon Security, Chicago, Illinois

"I knew nothing about gangs before the class. Now I feel that I have a very good understanding of gangs and gang activity. Wonderful class. I would not change a thing."
- Jason D. Keeling, Assistant Director, Intercon Security, Chicago, Illinois

"Very good information. Recommend the class for all officers who work the beat. Essential information that all officers should know for the job."
- William A. Peslak, Gang Tactical Officer, Cicero Police Department, Cicero, Illinois

"Very in depth and challenging. All bases covered. It would take an entire career to learn what we learned in 3 days."
- Chip P. Cline, Patrol Officer, Summit Police Department, Summit, Illinois

"Fast paced, but the course comes together. Well organized. Helps to better understand people and folks. Will provide beneficial information on learning to read graffiti and tattoos. Thanks for the knowledge."

 - Craig R. Renfrow, Narcotics Detective, Rogers Police Department, Rogers, Arkansas


"The course is very informative and intense. The information is very detailed and up to date. I would highly recommend this course for all law enforcement officers."

- Robert E. Young, School Resource Officer, Tunica County Sheriff Department, Tunica, Mississippi


"I enjoyed the course. I found it to be informative and useful. It will be the foundation for my future as both a Patrol Constable and a specialized gang officer. The course opened my eyes to the signs and symbols to look for in my community and the ability to convey my observations to other officers, citizens and most importantly the courts."

- Kyle Gatt, Patrol Constable, Peel Regional Police, Canada

"Very in-depth course on the people and folks nations. Lays a very strong foundation on which to build intelligence information. Highly recommend it for any police officer."

- Michael J. Gosha, Patrolman, Bridgeport Police Department, Bridgeport, Connecticut

"Great course. Information was accurate to current street events. The class will definitely enhance my ability to professionally do my job and teach my organization on the topic of gangs. I will be more confident in my knowledge referencing gangs". 

- Loran D. Hatcher, Security Threat Coordinator, Arlington County Sheriffs Department, Arlington, Virginia


"This has been the best gang course that I have attended to date. I have attended more than 200 hours of gang training and none of it has matched the detail that this course provided. The course was intense and demanding".

 - Keith Applewhite, Career Detective, Chesterfield Police Department, Chesterfield, Virgina

"I have attended a lot of gang training, but this is the best that I have attended.  The material is presented in a manner that forces you to retain it".

- Gary Crumrine, United States Probation Officer, Middle District of Florida

"At the beginning of this class I had very little knowledge of street gangs.  Gang Prevention provided me with the basic understanding of how street gangs operate and signs of what to look for when in your area.  The hand signs, handshakes, and other information are presented so the average person can understand them.  The course was well presented." 

- K. Ogima, Constable, Anishinabek Police Service, Canada

"Frank was extremely knowledgeable about his subject matter and presented the material in a straight forward and easy to digest manner.  A great course for any street copper."

- Mark J. Bertoncini, Criminal Investigator, United States Marshals

"The course was very informative.  Good use of symbols and graffiti.  The course will be very helpful in the area of court testimony."

- Darrell Merrick, Detective, Criminal Intelligence Section, Baltimore City Police Department, Baltimore, Maryland

“A wonderful course.  Learned so much from the instructor and from “The Street Gang Identification Manual”, thank you”

- Ernest Bell, Detective, Brockton Police Department, Brockton, Massachusetts


“This course has got to be one of the toughest courses I have ever attended.  It’s fast paced, a wealth of knowledge and gives you a feeling, once completed, that you will be taking back a huge asset of information to help your department combat street gangs.”

- Ismael R. Matias, Correctional Officer, Putnam County Sheriffs Department, Putnam County, New York


“This course gives attendees information beyond belief in a short period of time.  I recommend this course to anyone dealing with gangs”.

- Carlnika M. Roser, Detective Constable, Bermuda Police Service, British Overseas Territory of Bermuda

"This course was excellent.  Jam packed with information!  This course is a must if you really want to work gangs."

- Officer Joe Delgado, Maricopa County Community Colleges, Avondale, Arizona

“I paid my own way to attend the course.  The subject matter was very insightful and the course material was pragmatic.  I can go back to Washington, D.C. very confident in my abilities to identify and help prevent gang activity.”

- Officer Michael J. Lambeau, Metropolitan Police Department, Washington, DC

"This was probably the most I have studied for any certification course I have taken.  The material presented was not only interesting, but very informative!

- Officer William A. Campbell, Kentucky Department of Juvenile Justice – Training Coordinator, Richmond, Kentucky  


“This course introduces gang investigators to the basic building blocks of the Chicago based criminal street gangs.  Knowledge of the concepts taught is the key to effective gang investigations and this course brings them to light.  I have attended numerous courses, and also conferences, but this course has been the most effective training I have been to for proactive anti-gang policing.”

- Officer Duane Baillio, Lexington-Fayette Urban County Police, Lexington, Kentucky

 “The best memorization class on symbols, hand signs, colors and affiliations concerning the people and folks nations I have attending thus far.”

- Officer Todd Phillips, Lexington-Fayette Urban County Police, Lexington, Kentucky

“This is a great class, very informative.  I learned a great deal about gangs, hand signs, colors and graffiti.”

- Detective Eric Small, Charleston Police Department, Charleston, West Virginia

"I had a great time during this course.  I feel that Frank has taught me a great deal and that I will be able to take the information back to my agency.  He made the test easy by teaching the class harder and I truly appreciate that.  I can't wait to teach this information to my peers, schools and my community."

- Juvenile Corrections Officer Rebeka Scott, Johnson County Juvenile Department of Corrections, Olathe, Kansas

“Mr. Petrone’s course is very good for law enforcement personnel within the Illinois area. His class is informative for street Officers who have or will be working with gangs.”

- Sgt. Fred Lathan, St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department, St. Louis, Missouri





Essential Elements of Handguns Skills

"I would recommend the course to any officer, regardless of his shooting ability. It stresses the importance of quickly drawing your weapon and being able to land the first shot."
- Jim Katsaros, Tactical Unit Officer, Chicago Police Department

"The lecture portion is great. The instructor makes things very easy to understand. The range is controlled and the instructor advises each shooter of problem areas."
- Joseph Lamantia, Range Master, Police Firearms Instructor

"Very well organized, and comprehensive. The course is applicable to everyday police work."
- Frank Schmalz, Police Firearms Instructor

"Excellent class! Great initial exposure to CQB techniques and drills!"
- R.L. McDaniel, Patrol Officer

"An excellent course. It establishes or fine tunes basic handgun skills and techniques that every officer should have."
- David Fox, Patrol Officer

"I believe this class was beneficial not only from a shooting standpoint but also from a health / physical fitness perspective and its relation to officer survival."
- Michael Eck, Patrol Officer


Advanced Elements of Handguns Skills

"This course provides a necessary step involving handgun skills. This is the second GPI, Inc., course I have attended and my skills improved again. Frank always demonstrates excellent instructor ability which is always a plus for the student."
- Dion L. Bobo, Police Firearms Instructor


Advanced Elements of Handguns Skills II

"Once again a terrific course in firearms training. Advanced Elements of Handgun Skills II enables the everyday police officer an opportunity to receive specialized training he or she would only get if assigned to a special unit of operations such as SWAT, NIPAS or SORT. The multiple target engagement, shooting while moving and judgmental / decision making portions teach versatile skills applicable to practical situations."
- Dion L. Bobo, Police Firearms Instructor


Reduced / No Light Elements of Handgun Skills

"This course gives a particle application to what is needed for the everyday patrol officer. The circumstances surrounding a shooting are not going to be simple ones. Having the advantage via the knowledge and skill gained from this course is a decisive edge.
- Dion L. Bobo, Police Firearms Instructor

"Great class designed to help police officers stay alive. All practical shooting drills geared towards night shooting".
- Joe Motto, Patrol Officer

"Definitely one of the better classes I have taken during my 18 years in law enforcement involving low light applications".
- James Chiappetta, Sergeant

"The low light course covers issues that are not covered in basic shooting courses. It will prove very helpful to all patrol officers.
- Thomas Ackerman, Patrol Officer


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