Door Opening Industry

Training Group

Meet Our Team of Dedicated Industry Professionals

Our certified instructors are all active in the openings industry and are dedicated to the advancement of the next generation of door security and safety professionals. These professionals have hundreds of years combined experience between them all, making DOIT the best place for learning.

If you want to be YOUR best, come learn from the BEST!

DOIT's Advisory Council

(Pictured Left to Right)



Benjamin Gorton,  DAHC, DHT, DHC, CFDAI




Laura is Founder and CEO of DOIT. She has over 35 years' experience in the door and hardware industry, having spent the first 18 years in distribution, predominately in engineering/detailing where she created and managed a centralized detailing department for a multi-branch distributor. Laura spent the next 11 years in manufacturing, principally as a consultant and specifier and then almost 6 years working on behalf of the industry for the Door and Hardware Institute (DHI) where she was the Vice-President of Education, Certification and Technical Activities. She is also the former VP of Technical for the Door Security and Safety Foundation (DSSF). Laura is active in building code development and advocates for the industry promoting secure and safe openings.

In 2019, Laura was awarded the Distinguished Consultant Award as recognition for her contribution to the improvement and promotion of the body of knowledge on which the door and hardware industry is built. She has a focus on life safety, bringing awareness and education to the opening industry as well as the building design, code authority, and facility management communities.

Our Volunteer Instructors and Advisory Council Members


Rodney has been in the door and hardware industry for over 34 years. Rodney started his career in the industry as a locksmith in the Washington, DC market and then later for a contract hardware distributor where his responsibilities included specification writing, estimating, ordering and project management. In 2004 he moved over to the manufacturing side of the industry. He is currently a healthcare specialist for a major manufacturer, consulting with healthcare facilities to help them to fulfill their security and safety needs. Rodney has experience with building, life safety and fire codes, and has served as a NFPA 80 and NFPA 105 Technical Committee member. He is a fire and egress door assembly inspector and skilled in the installation and maintenance of doors, frames and hardware. Rodney has a love for teaching, especially when it comes to sharing his knowledge of key system design with others.

Special thanks to those Instructors who also serve as Advisory Council members!


Russ, an Army veteran, has been in the door and hardware industry for more than 31 years. He started in the industry as a warehouse manager for a large distribution firm and continued to spend the majority of his career on the distribution side of the industry with only a short diversion into manufacturing when he went to work for a wood door manufacturer. His interest in distribution brought him back to the supply side of the business and he now proudly owns his own distributorship, serving not only the Kentuckiana area but providing product, service and installation throughout the US. Russ has a deep respect for education and training and was among the first industry members to be certified as an AOC. In 2021 Russ was awarded the Distinguished Consultant Award for his high degree of technical excellence and standard of performance in the industry.

Nothing makes Russ happier than seeing others succeed and to that end he gives much of his free time to help train up others in the industry.

Advisory Council Member

Benjamin Gorton, DAHC, DHT, DHC, CFDAI

Ben has been in the door and hardware industry for over 32 years. Ben started his career in distribution as an estimator and project manager for the commercial construction market. After several years in distribution, Ben went to work for an independent manufacturer’s representative firm in the Philadelphia/Mid-Atlantic markets and then later, directly for manufacturing. For the last 9 years he has worked as an architectural hardware consultant, helping architects and facility owners by writing specifications for door hardware that fulfill their security needs. He is a fire and egress door assembly inspector and also teaches door and hardware concepts and applications to the next generation of door & hardware industry professionals.

Ben was awarded the Distinguished Consultant award in 2022 for demonstrating a high degree of technical excellence and standards of performance in the industry.

Advisory Council Member


Hal's experience in the door and hardware industry spans over 35 years. Hal is a factory representative for several product lines in Northern California, Northern Nevada & Hawaii. In addition, he conducts safety, security, classroom lockdown, and annual fire door inspections in the US & Canada and consults with other inspection companies as well as industry manufacturers regarding annual inspection requirements. He provides expert witness consulting services to legal teams looking for experts in the opening industry. In 2008, Hal founded DOORDATA Solutions, Inc. and created the first dedicated fire door inspection application available for fire door inspections. Hal has contracted with QAI Labs, over the last ten years, as a Field Inspector and Field Inspector Trainer. 

For 30 years, Hal has shared his love for the industry by writing articles, lecturing and teaching. In 2022 Hal was appointed to serve as a Principal Technical Committee Member for NFPA 80 and NFPA 105 as a Special Expert. 

Advisory Council Member


Wally has been in the door and hardware industry for over 39 years, starting his career as a truck driver in 1984 delivering finish material to construction sites. Wally's drive for continued learning helped him climb the corporate ladder where he now serves as Sr. Business Development Manager for the same company he started with so many years ago. Wally has a deep understanding of the manufacturing process and green building initiatives. Wally truly lives by the motto, "as iron sharpens iron, so one person shall sharpen another". 

No one know, understands or loves wood doors more than Wally, his excitement when instructing is contagious. He really loves the opening industry and has a passion to pour his knowledge into anyone who is ready to receive it.

Advisory Council Member

Our family of Instructors are the best in the business!

Paul Anderson, CFDAI, DHT, DHC, CFL, DSI

Paul is a proud Marine veteran with over 25 years experience in the door and hardware industry. Paul started out his career as an Institutional Locksmith in the 1990’s. He achieved his first certification as a Facility Locksmith and later earned accreditation as a Certified Fire Door Assembly Inspector. In 2016, Paul started his own company, Revelation Door Inspections. His business grew rapidly, expanding to nationwide service within the first year. Paul is also a Field Inspector for QAI Testing Laboratories and is the developer of Door Compliance Tracker, a fire door inspection software program.

Paul is dedicated to training and educating those in and around the opening industry, making openings safer for building occupants in every situation, every day.

Lee Garver, DAHC, FDHI

Lee has well over 40 years' of experience in the door and hardware industry with an expertise in commercial door hardware. Lee is a proud recipient of the Founders Award, the highest and most prestigious award in the door security and safety industry, for outstanding service and technical expertise. Lee specializes in key system design and key control initiatives. He is the author of several books related to door, frame and hardware application and installation and was instrumental in the creation and maintenance of Key Systems and Nomenclature, a technical document which is referenced in most specifications used today.

Lee has developed multiple training courses for various industry associations, organizations and private companies over his four decades in the industry. He retired from a major manufacturer but still continues to teach and advocate on behalf of the opening industry.

Ben Austin, AHC, FDAI

Ben has been in the door, frame and hardware industry, working for the same distribution firm, for nearly 15 years. Prior to his opening industry career, Ben was a math and science teacher for a private Christian academy. His love for teaching quickly made him a great asset as an instructor for our industry.

Ben's passion for the sciences has given him a significant advantage in the disciplines of detailing and estimating and made him a fast expert in electrified hardware and access control. Ben is also a fire door and egress assembly inspector, training that has given him a well-rounded understanding of the total opening. Ben is an avid learner and continually strives to pass on all he has learned.

Nicole Casa, CFDAI, DSI

Nicole has over ten years of experience in the construction industry. From codes to applications, Nicole has centered her career around commercial door openings, whether it be manual doors and hardware, automatic swinging and sliding doors, or special-purpose accordion style doors. Nicole’s knowledge and awareness drives her passion for compliance and safety, specifically fire. Nicole has earned multiple certifications such as, AAADM Certified Inspector, Won-Door Certified Inspector, and Certified Fire Door Inspector. Her professional and academic training have led her to be appointed Principal to the NFPA 80 Technical Committee in 2022, proudly representing her company.

Nicole has a passion for spreading knowledge and awareness around commercial opening solutions and a particular interest in the growing initiative for woman in the industry to achieve their educational goals and certifications.

John Perdue, AHC, CFDAI, EHC, RL

John was born into the opening industry and now has over 28 years’ experience. He started his career as a key cutter, completing different tasks required by the family business.  John had a natural drive for education and training and devoured any chance to build his skills, earning certifications in multiple disciplines from different organizations.

John now runs the family business as Owner and President and has grown it to a cutting-edge security and safety equipment company. John still has a laser focus on education and even instituted his own inter-company training program. He is happiest when giving back to others and his patience and true concern for his students shows in the great care he puts into his teaching.

Audrey Wyser DHT, DHC, AHC, CDT

Audrey has been involved in the door opening industry for nearly 30 years. Her very first job was as a bookkeeper for a distributor. Her attention to detail and interest in the industry helped her develop her skills in detailing, where she later spent nearly 15 years. Audrey spent the next 5 years writing specifications for a large manufacturer before she began working for the Door and Hardware Institute as a Technical Manager, working with students from all over the world.

Audrey is now retired but generously donates much of her free time working with DOIT and continues to help students and instructors alike.

Brad Miller, AOC

Brad has been in the door and hardware industry for more than 37 years, with over 22 years spent on the distribution end of the business. Brad also spent over 14 years on the manufacturing side working as a specification writer and consultant. Brad has expertise in all aspects of the opening industry with a continued emphasis on project management, a part of the business that he thoroughly enjoys. He works currently for a distributor, running his projects "cradle to grave", something not many firms do nowadays.

Brad has been instructing for the majority of his career. He devotes much of his time giving back to the opening industry by training others and sharing his many experiences, from both the supply and manufacturing sides of the business, with all of his students.

Bob Cullum, AHC, CML, CFDI, DSI, DSC

Bob has been actively engaged in the security door hardware business for nearly 50 years. In that time, he has continuously improved his skills and knowledge about life safety issues relevant to our industry. Bob has and continues to serve on various committees for industry trade groups. He has instructed a wide variety of classes, all focusing on the opening industry. Bob has created training curriculum on complex subjects, and has developed methodologies and best practices for installers, door service technicians, systems integrators, and locksmiths.

Bob's interest in mechanical and electronic gadgets often spills over into his free time, he has a genuine joy for sharing information about what interests him most.

Charlottesville, Virginia 22903

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