Friday, December 27, 2013  

2013 in Review

CALI Board of Directors and Members:

The CALI NLITE, ELITE and Q4 Training teams are pleased to report another great year in CALI’s Training & Enrichment series for investigators in the State of California. Each year these training events reach approximately 200 participants and generate many new members. In fact, many attendees of the 2013 NLITE event season were already members of CALI. Our research found that the reason for this was that newly licensed investigators were joining CALI immediately so that they will be qualified to attend the event even though that is not one of the qualifications to attend. The rumor that appears to be floating around is that the training alone is worth the membership cost so new licensees were joining immediately not knowing about the discount until they attend the class.

Newly Licensed Investigator Training & Enrichment

The NLITE series is a time of learning new skill sets in investigations and how to be successful in operating a private investigations firm. This is a great time for new members and for newly licensed investigators to come together, network and learn the basics of the profession and doing business.

The NLITE staff continues to draw resources from every avenue possible to perfect, improve and present the most up to date legal information possible at each and every one of these events. The staff is continuing to build the NLITE/CALI documents page by gathering information, contracts, documents and forms to be placed on the CALI website for event attendees and for the membership in general to access as a resource. If any member of the association has documents, forms or basic information which they feel would be helpful to newly licensed investigator and to the membership, please submit them to Renee Cervo at [email protected]. Renee will then clean them up and post them on the CALI website.

Some may still ask you, what is NLITE? N.L.I.T.E. stands for, Newly Licensed Investigator Training & Enrichment”, these events are CALI sponsored and are jam packed with information for the newly licensed investigator and new members. This 8 hour event is packed with the basic information a newly licensed investigator needs. The CALI NLITE program has become the most sought after "Investigator 101” event in our state and its design is currently be sought out by associations across the nation. It all started with YOU as CALI members.

This event was designed to be a place where newly licensed investigators and new members could gather information, protect their self legally, discover the industry work ethics and be welcomed to the profession by CALI leaders from the President down to their very own District Director and Governor.

During the 2012-13 training season NLITE staff has held 3 NLITE events, NLITE VII, VIII and IX. The 2014 training season will begin with NLITE X planned to be held on March 15th 2014 in Sacramento in conjunction with Leg Day.

You as the membership along with the CALI Board of Directors have given these training events your support and the funding needed to make each event a success and now the training events are entering their 3rd year of SUCCESS. The event stats are;

NLITE VII – The event was attended by 56 newly licensed investigators. 25 of those attendees were already members of CALI. 26 of them became members at the event.

NLITE VIII – The event was attended by 40 newly licensed investigators. 24 of those attendees were already members of CALI. 10 of them became members at the event.

NLITE IX – The event was attended by 62 newly licensed investigators. 58 of those attendees were already members of CALI. 3 of them became members at the event.

ELITE is, Experienced Licensed Investigator Training & Enrichment

As most everyone is aware, the ELITE - Experienced Licensed Investigator Training & Enrichment training series was kicked off on October 5th 2013 in Torrance, California and to say the least, the event was a resounding SUCCESS!

The next ELITE event will be held on Saturday, January 25th 2014 in Sacramento, California at the Sheraton Grand Sacramento. This event will be closed at 50 participants so register NOW on the CALI website.

Some may be asking, what is ELITE?

ELITE is, Experienced Licensed Investigator Training & Enrichment”, CALI is seeking out the best of the best topics and presenters which will allow you to walk away from each event with new knowledge and skill sets which you can put into practice the following Monday morning, or as soon as you leave the event.

This training program is being developed with the Experienced Investigator in mind. Each event will focus on a specific discipline/skill set in the field of Private Investigations. Each event will be an intensive 8 hour sessions designed so that when each investigator walks out the door, he or she will have the basic knowledge of how to carry out the investigation in that discipline/skill set from start to finish.

The CALI Board has mandated that ELITE provide members with opportunities that will improve their existing skill sets or add new skill sets to each member’s repertoire of services. This will ultimately increase a member’s level of experience which will ultimately enable them to increase their income.

There will be two ELITE events each year one to be held in the Northern region of the state and one in the Southern Region.

The first ELITE event, ELITE I was held in Torrance California on October 5th 2014 on the topic. "Marketing and Branding Your Business”. The class was full of experienced investigators looking for new ways to promote their business and become aware of the pit falls of business to be concerned with. Master Investigator Kris Buckner put on an outstanding presentation and was very candid about the mistakes he personally made, what he did to correct those mistakes and what he would do if he could do it all over again. Everyone was alert and on the edge of their seats the entire day.

What were the responses you might ask? Here are just a few;

  • The class was awesome...there is no other way to say it...just what I needed.
  • Excellent
  • Good class
  • Great Speaker
  • Kris did an outstanding job of not only presenting the material but in keeping the attention of each attendee. He is very knowledgeable and is able to maintain a great balance between personal/business stories and presenting the material.
  • Lively speaker with inspiring material.
  • Excellent preparation on the part of Mr. Buckner -- extensive knowledge of the subject matter, flowing PowerPoint presentation, group exercises, detailed and thought-provoking handouts.
  • Great job thank you for all of this great information.
  • Excellent presenter. Kept attention throughout program. Almost too much content for a one-day program.
  • Fantastic!
  • Great course!
  • This was a great first class for ELITE. I think it will sell out once the word gets out. ELITE team, thank you for getting this class started! The NLITE and ELITE courses and networking have justified my CALI membership. It's money well spent and invested! Looking forward to others.

Q4 Training and Mentorship

What about Q4 Training and Mentorship program?

It is my intention to begin the work on a very complex training program for those wanting to come into the investigations field with little or no experience. CALI as a trend setting association believes that the training of these potentially new investigators at least be offered training and direction by the largest private investigator association in the nation, CALI.

Q4 will be a one year program that provides the book and field knowledge to brand new unlicensed students, newly licensed investigators just wanting to get well rounded instruction in the industry skills and possibly some that just want to hone their current skills. The program will teach the Penal code, Business & Professions code, Evidence code, Welfare & Institutions code, court testimony, professional ethics, conducting a field investigation, working in the world of criminal defense, CSI skills and much much more. Q4 will also earn the association an income as each student will pay for material and the program. We are also hoping to design the program so that anyone completing the program has been taught the content of the CPI designation and when other requirements are fulfilled the student is ready to take the CPI test. This is a well-rounded program and hopefully will involve our current CPI investigators on the mentorship side of the program.

If you are interested in being involved in the design, development and implementation of this program or you are a CALI CPI and would like to be involved please forward to me your CV/resume and a detailed statement as to why you would like to be involved, what skills you bring to the team and any education curriculum building skills you may possess. Please forward your information to me at [email protected]. Currently we have two Sheriff’s, one Chief of Police, One District Attorney and we are currently waiting for confirmation of one judge who will be sitting on the programs review panel. If you have any officials you know who would be willing to sit on the review panel please let me know. This program will be going to POST for review and certification.


As I write each of these reports I reflect on how these training events continue to be a pleasure and a privilege to manage. The real recognition goes to the CALI Executive Director Jerry Packer and his crew in the Executive Director’s Office and the outstanding group of professionals involved in the program. I would also like to give a special thanks to Toni Fender who made a notable impact on all of the training programs and events from behind the scenes to make these events a success. To all of the NLITE, ELITE and Q4 staff I say thank you because without your input and support, these program would never have been successful. I remain dedicated to assuring that every investigator in this state who attends these events and thereafter joins CALI receives best START and ADVANCED training available in the industry. NLITE, ELITE & Q4 Training Director, C.W. Sellers

Many thanks to:
The CALI Board
Jim Zimmer – CALI President who trusted my vision
Chris Reynolds – CALI President who continued the work
Michael Julian – CALI President who continued to move the program forward
Rene Cervo – Without her help, NLITE and ELITE would have taken forever to complete.
Faculty – Without your help NLITE would not be the success it is today; David Queen, Francie Koehler, Chris Reynolds and Frank Huntington, III.