Former FBI Agent Gary Aldrich is the recipient of the CCRKBA Gun Rights Defender of the Month Award for May.
 According to John Michael Snyder, CCRKBA Public Affairs Director, “Gary is a true American patriot and outspoken defender of the individual Second Amendment civil right of law-abiding American citizens to keep and bear arms. 
 “Since leaving the FBI in the early 1990s, Gary has devoted himself to our country,” he continued, “founding and directing the Patrick Henry Center for Individual Liberty, and writing in a most articulate manner in defense of the Second Amendment. He and his wife, also a former FBI agent, have formed a group called the Patriettes, an offshoot of the Center, which trains certain qualified women volunteers in the safe and efficient use of handguns. I am proud to say that my wife has completed successfully this course and now is an official ‘Patriette.’ Gary is most deserving of this award.”
 During last year’s series of sniper attacks occurring in the Washington, D. C. – Maryland –Virginia area, Aldrich wrote, “those who preach gun control is the answer to violent crime will have no immediate comment when the shooter is eventually arrested or killed. That’s because Maryland and the District of Columbia have some of the toughest gun laws in the country. These overlapping, and some say unconstitutional, gun laws have done nothing to make Maryland and D.C. safer. Layer upon layer of gun laws simply don’t work…
 “All of the conventional statistics prove that when citizens have the right to arm themselves and carry concealed weapons, the crime rate goes down,” Aldrich continued. “The killer now confines most of his activities to the state of Maryland. Could it be that he (or they) know they have little to fear from the law-abiding citizens who are helpless against such armed killers?  If one person had been armed on that train in Long Island, or if one school official had been armed at Columbine, could there have been a different outcome?”
 One thing is for certain, Gary wrote, “Those who live in states that permit their law-abiding to carry concealed weapons have citizens who have less to fear from armed terrorists, whether foreign or domestic. Citizens of these states constitute a volunteer army of law enforcement officers multiplying the number of possibilities of stopping this madness from continuing.”
 In 1996, Aldrich was the first to break the code of silence surrounding the Clinton Administration.  In his book, Unlimited Access: an FBI Agent Inside the Clinton White House, Aldrich exposed the questionable behavior and serious breaches of security he witnessed while performing background checks on White House personnel. The book quickly skyrocketed to the top of The New York Times Bestseller List and stayed on the list for 20 weeks.
 Aldrich has made thousands of major radio, TV and speaking appearances, including This Week, Meet the Press, Inside Edition, and Dateline. In addition, he has appeared at more than 100 fundraising events across the country. He has authored editorial pieces for such publications as Human Events, The Wall Street Journal, Insight Magazine, and The Daily Oklahoman.
 A 26-year veteran of the FBI, Aldrich specialized in white-collar crime, including fraud and political corruption. For five years prior to retiring, he served Presidents George H. W. Bush and Clinton, conducting more than 10,000 White House interviews and over 2,000 presidential background checks. In addition, he acted as Senate and House Liaison Agent, working closely with U.S. Senators and Representatives on a variety of issues.
 In January, 1998, he founded the Patrick Henry Center, a non-profit foundation which strongly supports the right of citizens to engage in ethical dissent. It supports Whistle Blowers, and even has a civilian version of the “Witness Protection Program.”
 “One obvious way government treats citizens like children,” wrote Aldrich, “is the endless attempt to disarm the population. This in spite of the clear wording in the Constitution that guarantees our right to own and bear arms. In states like Virginia, violent crime continues to go down while citizens avail themselves with concealed-carry permits that the state must issue whenever shown proof of the required training…
 “Recently, the Patrick Henry Center has been training dozens of women, empowering them to carry firearms,” Aldrich said. “We’ve trained nearly 100 D.C.-area women so far, and we’ll train many more before the end of next year. These newly energized and equipped citizens not only are exercising their rights, but they also are experiencing a new-found freedom – freedom from the constant fear of attack from violent predators.”