Defense Equipment Company’s team members have developed and sustained strong relationships in the Military First Responder market and have over a century of combined experience. DEC provides solutions to our customers by utilizing our product expertise, understanding customer requirements, military contract knowledge, quality vendors, and strong customer service.

About Us

Defense Equipment Company collaborates with leading market suppliers to help you identify and procure the best solutions to maximize your budget, meet your deadlines, and complete your mission. During the past 25 years, DEC team members have cultivated relationships in the First Responder market. DEC provides customer solutions by tapping into 100+ years of combined Fire & Emergency Services /CBRNe experience, covering product knowledge, military experience, quality vendors, and strong customer service. Long-standing relationships with industry-leading suppliers allow us to connect you with the people and products that you need.

Gary Hess

President of Defense Equipment

Gary Hess is the president of Defense Equipment Company and supports the CBRNE markets and federal/military program buys. Gary has been serving the federal and military FES/CBRN markets for the last 25+ years. Gary started his career with Safety Equipment Company prior to the company being acquired by Fisher Scientific. He served as Fisher’s Vice President of Sales for First Responder markets for 7 years. Gary started up Protect the Force as a manufacturer rep company and expanded into tactical sales, tactical & FES service provider, and R&D product development. Gary has devoted his professional career supporting the federal government and military (FES,CBRN, LE, Tactical) markets and inspired to finding solutions to the ever changing requirements of our military and first responders.

Rodney Born

Sales Manager

Rodney Born is the Army and Air Force West Coast Sales Manager with Defense Equipment Company, providing First Responder, CBRNE and Tactical Equipment to the federal agencies. Prior to his current position, he served in and retired from the United States Air Force with 22 years as a firefighter. Upon retirement from the Air Force he worked as a territory sales manager for Fisher Safety/Thermo Fisher Scientific. After nearly 10 years in the sales industry, Rod returned to work at the DoD Fire Academy as a Fire Officer/NIMS Instructor. His most recent position with the Fire Academy was as Chief of Advanced Fire Training at the DoD’s Louis F. Garland Fire Academy located at Goodfellow Air Force Base, San Angelo Texas.

Ron Nolting

Sales Manager

Ron Nolting serves as the Sales Manager for the East Coast Air Force, Marines, Navy Region SW, Guam, PACAF bases. Ron joined the Defense Equipment Company team as the subject matter expert as it relates to Fire and Emergency Services. Ron’s business acumen and his commitment to excellent customer service and relationship management has made him a profound part of the DEC team. Ron started out as an entrepreneur developing and selling a Mass Decontamination Device called the TridentOne. Ron worked with DOD distribution channels as well as emergency management facilities to get worldwide coverage for his product. He has 10 years of experience as a manufacture Representative in the Military FES Market. Ron has developed multiple strategic partners allowing great success in these markets.

Michael Impastato

Sales Manager

Michael Impastato is the Business Development Manager for Defense Equipment Company for the CBRN Market. CW05 Impastato retired in August of 2017 from the United States Marine Corps after 30 years of faithful and dedicated service. His roles included advising the Commander on global sourcing of Marine Corps CBRN capabilities to support Combatant Commander Requirements, along with advocating for operational capabilities required by the Service retained operating forces; which included the Second Marine Expeditionary Force, Marine Corps Security Force Regiment along with the Chemical Biological Incident Response Force (CBIRF). During his tenure, he also fulfilled the responsibility as the primary Emergency Manger that oversaw Destructive Weather, Continuity of Operations, Critical Infrastructure, Anti-terrorism efforts along with Force Protection efforts and Informational Operational Security.

Jill Hess

Customer Service Manager

Jill Hess serves as a Customer Service Manager for Defense Equipment Company. She works closely with the Sales Managers for CBRNE, First Responder, and Tactical equipment. Jill has over 20 years of experience in the First Responder military market working as an Inside Sales Manager for Safety Equipment Company and as an Account Manager for Protect The Force, focusing on Army and Marine Markets. She has been through extensive training in the FES market and developed multiple alliances in the State and Local Municipal Market.