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Tom’s Instructor Credentials:
  • NRA Training Counselor
  • NRA Chief Range Safety Officer
  • NRA Certified Pistol, Rifle, & Shotgun Instructor
  • NRA Certified Personal Protection In The Home Instructor
  • NRA Certified Personal Protection Outside The Home Instructor
  • Texas License to Carry Instructor
  • Defensive Pistol, Rifle, & Shotgun Instructor
  •  3 Gun Competition Instructor

Tom Dowdy, Owner

Tom Dowdy, owner of Handgun Skills, LLC, is a decorated Vietnam veteran and was an expert marksman in the US Army.   He is a Life Member of the National Rifle Association, an NRA Training Counselor, and a Front Sight Lifetime Guardian Member where he completed defensive shooting training in multiple years.  He has had extensive NRA training through six NRA basic courses and seven NRA instructor courses, Combat Focus Shooting with pistol and carbine through I.C.E Training.  While Tom is an independent instructor, he is the primary NRA instructor at Thunder Gun Range, 17234 FM 1314, Conroe, TX 77302. Tom has been the Match Director since 2014 for the monthly Multi-Gun Matches at Thunder Gun Range.  As an NRA Training Counselor Tom trains and certifies others as NRA Pistol, Rifle, Shotgun Instructors, Range Safety Officers, and Chief Range Safety Officers.

Tom has a patient but razor focused teaching style that allows students to learn in a relaxed atmosphere aimed at a high retention of the material taught.  Tom follows an eight-step method of teaching that is very effective in students learning through mastering the simple and then progressing to the complex fundamentals in shooting.  Tom is very quick to recognize shooters weaknesses and adept at helping them overcome their weaknesses.  Tom’s and Handgun Skills, LLC goal is to enable students to improve and hone their shooting skills through highly skilled instruction and training on their own once they learn the proper fundamentals.

David Gaines, Instructor

David Gaines is also a NRA Training Counselor and an independent instructor that has worked with Handgun Skills, LLC for several years.  He is an MBA, has a diverse background that includes, being a licensed paramedic, Program Director of a college EMS program, working in the oilfield services industry, then moving into the firearms business as a Federal Firearms Licensee, gunsmith, and certified firearms instructor.  David’s style of teaching mirrors the Handgun Skills philosophy of providing focused training in a relaxed atmosphere where students retain a high percentage of material taught.

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David’s Instructor Credentials:
  • NRA Training Counselor
  • NRA Chief Range Safety Officer
  • NRA Certified Pistol, Rifle & Shotgun Instructor
  • NRA Personal Protection in the Home Instructor
  • NRA Personal Protection Outside the Home Instructor
  • Texas License to Carry Instructor
  • Certified Gunsmith
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Tony’s Instructor Credentials:
  • Master Peace Officer Certificate – Texas Commission on Law Enforcement 2020
  • Firearms Instructor Proficiency Certificate – Texas Commission on Law Enforcement 2020
  • Basic Instructor Proficiency Certificate – Texas Commission on Law Enforcement 2020
  • Certified Pistol Instructor – National Rifle Association 2020
  • Range Safety Officer – National Rifle Association 2020
  • Civilian Response to Active Shooter Events Instructor -Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training (ALERRT) 2020
  • School Based Law Enforcement – Texas Commission on Law Enforcement 2020
  • Certified Texas Licensed to Carry Instructor – Texas DPS RSD 2021
  • Level 3 Firearms & Classroom Instructor – Texas DPS RSD 2022
  • Instructor Certificate Bloodborne Pathogen – U.S. Public Health Service 2001
  • Clandestine Laboratory Investigation/Safety Certification – U.S. DEA 1998
  • Intermediate Certificate – California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training 1997

Anthony “Tony” Levy, Instructor

Anthony “Tony” Levey, MA, is a decorated retired Federal law enforcement officer, Texas Master Peace Officer, and Level III Private Security Instructor. Tony has served as a Regional Director for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Special Agent in Charge, Deputy Federal Coordinator of United Nations General Assembly, Supervisory Special Agent, DEA Special Agent, Municipal Police Officer, and School Police Officer for numerous law enforcement agencies.

Tony has a Master of Arts degree in Organizational Leadership and a Bachelor of Science in Political Science degree. Tony has studied Terrorism and Homeland Security at the graduate level at Boston University. Tony is also a graduate of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Senior Executive Service Candidate Development Program (SES CDP).

Since retiring from Federal employment, Tony was certified as a Texas Master Peace Officer, Texas License to Carry Instructor, Level III Firearms & Classroom Instructor, School-Based Law Enforcement, NRA Pistol Instructor, and NRA Range Safety Officer.

Bill Wendler, Instructor

Bill Wendler is an independent instructor team member whose passion is “Total Self-Defense” training.  He believes students should be trained beyond basic proficiency, to where they have gained expanded expertise to prevail in a defensive encounter, whether it be for self-protection or protection of a family member or fellow citizen facing a deadly threat.

Bill’s has completed extensive training in the combative aspects of pistol, rifle, shotgun, knife, and hand-to-hand self-defense.    In addition to extensive NRA training Bill has trained with Hoffner Training Academy, Suarez International, I.C.E. Training, Target Focus Training, and Krav Maga.  Bill’s focus as an instructor is to prepare students for the various real threats in today’s unsettling society, including Home Defense Preparation, Situational Awareness, Active Shooter Preparation & Response, and Proactive Personal Self Defense.

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Bill’s Instructor Credentials:
  • NRA Refuse to be a Victim Instructor
  • NRA Range Safety Officer
  • NRA Certified Pistol, Rifle, and Shotgun Instructor
  • NRA Personal Protection in the Home Instructor
  • NRA Personal Protection Outside the Home Instructor
  • Texas License to Carry Instructor
  • Hoffner Rifle Instructor
  • Non-NRA Tactical Rifle & Shotgun Instructor
  • Close Quarters Combat Instructor
  • Home Defense Consultant
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