BRIGADE STAFF (SOUTH
James A. Bolt
Lieutenant Colonel, Brigade Commander (South)
LTC Bolt served his country in the U.S. Army for over thirty years retiring as command sergeant major. During that time, he served one tour in Afghanistan as Senior Military Combat Advisor to the Afghan Security Forces and subsequently graduated from the Afghan Counter-insurgency Academy. While a member of the U.S. Army, LTC Bolt spent a career in the field of Narcotics and Narco-Terrorism. His assignments included service with INTERPOL, the Columbian Federal Narcotics Police, Israeli Security Services, Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Scotland Yard. He served six years with DEA’s Federal Narcotics Task Force and seven years with the U.S. Marshals Service Fugitive Task Force. His awards include the Bronze Star, Combat Infantryman Badge, Special Forces Combat Insignia, and both U.S. and Laotian Airborne wings. He was appointed battalion commander, 1st South Carolina Battalion U.S. VRC in 2020 and Brigade Commander (South) in 2021.
CPT, Commanding, 1st Florida Battalion
CPT Word served eleven years with the Florida Highway Patrol (FLHP) before transferring to Union County Sheriff’s Office where he has served for twelve years. He is a licensed private pilot, field training officer, electrical contractor, and president of a security-alarm company. He holds bachelor degrees in criminal justice and business management. He joined U.S. VRC in 2018 as battalion executive officer and was appointed battalion commander in 2020.
Carl J. Lay
Command Sergeant Major, 1st Florida Battalion
CSM Lay began his military career with the U.S. Army in 1989 and served over 23 years active
duty retiring in 2012. His military duties included (19D) Cavalry Scout and (19K) M1 Tanker. His
Leadership positions included Scout Platoon Sergeant, Tank Platoon Sergeant, Tank Company
First Sergeant, Cavalry Troop First Sergeant, Cavalry Squadron Operations NCOIC, Infantry
Battalion Operations NCOIC, and Armor Brigade Operations NCOIC. His military decorations
include Order of St George Medallion, Cavalry Spurs Combat and Spur Ride, Cavalry Saber
and NCO Sword. MSM (2 Oak Leaf Clusters), Bronze Star (3 Oak Leaf Clusters), Army
Commendation Medal with “V” device (3 Oak Leaf Clusters), Army Achievement Medal (5 Oak
Leaf Clusters), and many other decorations. CSM Lay holds a B.S degree in Border and
Homeland Security with a Minor in Criminal Justice and Certifications in Counterterrorism and
Disaster/Emergency Management as well as an Associate Degree in Criminal Justice and Arts.
He is also a NRA certified firearms instructor. He currently serves as Command Sergeant Major,
1 st Florida Battalion.