It seems like just the other day that Rick Elder had left Government service supporting USSOCOM at Natick and had accepted a position as Executive Director Smith Optics Elite Division. He’s done one hell of a job during his time at Smith. Maybe that’s why the past two years seems like just yesterday. Time sure flies when you’re having fun. But, today is a new day, and Smith Optics announces that Rick is leaving and 5.11 Tactical announces that in October, he will join them as Vice President of Special Operations Forces Products.
The move is extremely amicable and Rick won’t be leaving Smith immediately. He’s going to stick around for two months to help in finding his replacement, as well as spending additional time in ensuring a smooth transition.
Rick Elder provided SSD with the following statement, “I have greatly enjoyed my time at Smith Optics, working with a fantastic team that over the last two years helped propel this division into one of the top tier ballistic eyewear providers in the world. I am extremely grateful for the opportunity that Smith provided me and proud of all that we have accomplished.”
Regarding the new opportunity with 5.11 Tactical, “I am excited to join the 5.11 Tactical leadership team in October. While I cannot yet share the specifics of 5.11’s plans to serve the Special Operations communities, I look forward to telling you more about the company’s plan for 2013 before the end of this year.”
First off, congrats to Rick, who I’ve known for many years, on his new position. Second, congrats to 5.11 Tactical for landing Rick. He’s a very talented guy. Finally, think about 5.11 starting a division to concentrate on SOF Products. This announcement has so many implications and we can’t wait to see where this will take them.