About Halo Training

Because the world is changing at an extraordinary rate, businesses today need to move fast just to stay in the game. Those that don’t keep up, can find themselves facing a new battle…relevance.

About HALO Training

Our mission is to inspire a new era of forward-thinking, innovative and agile leaders who are equipped for the challenges of today’s world and the willingness to take on those of tomorrow.

Our trainers are all former leaders and members of the intelligence & special operations communities.

We provide professional development and team building for businesses and teams through a progressive series of carefully planned educational and experiential based training solutions, that empower people to perform beyond normal expectations.

Meet the team

Tony Groves

As a part of Tony’s 18 year career in both the Defence Force and as a Risk Management Consultant he was continually sent to foreign places in times of instability.  

“It was here that I encountered numerous challenges including managing large numbers of internally displaced people, working through language barriers as a part of a multi-national team, adverse living conditions and leading teams through many dynamic challenges”.

Tony holds a Diploma of Government (Security), Diploma of Security and Risk Management, Graduate Diploma of Strategic Leadership and a Master of Science in Counter-terrorism Studies.

Dr Geoff Sutton initially cut his teeth in the NZ military as an organisational psychologist providing internal consultancy services to middle and senior managers. As the Special Forces (SF) psychologist for the 1st New Zealand Special Air Service Regiment Geoff designed and ran multiple specialist selection processes for the SAS, worked with individuals following potentially traumatic events, developed a range of high performance packages for SF trainees, and delivered peak performance developmental suites to teams within the unit.

Geoff specialises in harmful team members and workplace behaviours, having done his Doctorate in dark personality traits. More recently Geoff has lectured for the University of Canterbury in the Management and Psychology departments, and has consulted in the Canterbury region to local businesses.

Geoff Sutton

Josh Jacobsen

Josh spent 9 years in the New Zealand Defence Force, first in the Royal New Zealand Navy as a Diver before transferring to the New Zealand Army. During his time in the military he deployed twice to Afghanistan.

Following his military service, Josh spent several years with the United Nations in Jordan, Lebanon,and the Gaza Strip. In Gaza he led a staff of over 1200 people to provide safety for almost 12,000 staff members and security to over 300 installations including schools, health clinics, and warehouses.

On his return to New Zealand he co-founded Desert Road Project Management, an organisation that provides security consulting, project management, and risk management services to public and private sector organisations looking to manage risks to their staff and operations. Josh holds a BA in Politics and Defence Studies.

Ryan Gilbert is the founder of Phorge and a career teacher, specialising in mindset development and personal healing.
After serving 10 years in the New Zealand Army, Ryan entered the commercial training sector as an instructor for high risk industrial rescue before founding Phorge, where he teaches unique meditation and breathing techniques to people seeking greater focus, clarity, and creativity in their personal and professional lives.

Ryan Gilbert

Maria Topia-Groves

Maria is a co-founder of HALO Training.  She is a passionate and driven strategic thinker with a wealth of experience innovating, motivating, building, deploying and leading.  She thrives on product innovation, navigating adversity and challenging the status quo.

Maria is the nerve center of HALO and is responsible for developing our long term strategy, building our capabilities and providing purpose and direction for the organisation to achieve our vision.

Maria has many years of experience in customer service and is currently working towards a Graduate Diploma in Strategic Leadership.

Founder and Director for PracMed NZ, Simon is a Kiwi Veteran, former Reconnaissance Operator and PSD team medic who has had an extensive career operating throughout the Middle East, Asia and the Pacific.

His passion and drive to ensure Kiwi’s are taught Real First Aid are second to none, his commitment to the development of PracMed NZ’s products and training comes from his own experiences and has been refined and moulded to suit the civilian market to ensure more Kiwi’s survive injuries at work, home and during recreational activities.

Simon is well known for his fun and engaging teaching style and his ability to explain and simplify first aid so everyone understands it.

Simon Ritson


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