“Many of you have picked me out of a crowd at a BassPro Shops grand opening, at the SHOT Show or at other events because of my platinum blonde ponytail. Fun Fact: my hair color has changed and it has been sort of fun being a bit incognito recently, LOL! Not only is my hair a new color, but SFWA has some new announcements to make, too! COVID has not slowed us down, it has allowed us to spend quality time expanding the benefits SFWA offers to women worldwide. It is a trying time for our country and firearms owners like never before and there is no time like the present to increase our education and empowerment levels with excellent civilian-oriented tips and techniques that have proven effective for more than two decades.” -Susan Romanov

Here's a bit of what's NEW!

  • SFWA has the only indoor shooting range in the country designed specifically for women and their friends and family called Family Fun Indoor Range, newly located in the beautiful Smoky Mountains of Tennessee!
  • New in 2021, we have begun releasing our longstanding civilian SFWA University training classes in an online virtual format featuring real-time-interaction with students so that women and the men in their lives can increase the odds they will prevail in an attack, right from the comfort of their own homes!
  • Email us to be included in our online course schedule announcements so that you can register before they fill up! We have also introduced our popular "Women of a Different Caliber Membership" in an ONLINE format that gives women worldwide the opportunity to take all of our online courses FREE!

When SFWA's Founder was held hostage in her home for 5 1/2 hours in 1992 and then stalked for 2 years, she was not "self protection" savvy. Attempting to educate herself in what was typically a man's world, she discovered the reality of being a civilian in fear for her life thrown into a training environment that was meant for law enforcement and military. The difference was that civilians do not have the same legal responsibilities in self-defense situations as those who were offering instruction and training. Plus, being in constant fear for her life for 2 years and 5 hours 1/2 hours, it became clear that the techniques she was being taught did not meet the level of fast and precise reaction time necessary for her to prevail. So, necessity being the mother of invention, it was up to her to meet her need. Speed up to today, Susan Romanov has developed civilian curriculum that absolutely increases the odds you will prevail in a self defense encounter with a gun, she has taught more than 100,000 women and a few good men (as of 2018), has published magazines on the subject for women and children, and is a motivational speaker and trainer. CLICK to request a FREE link to Susan's horrifying experience told in Women of A Different Caliber, an Inspirational Story.

Having visited indoor and outdoor shooting ranges across the country and being an active part of the shooting industry since 1998, Susan has met many business professionals and discovered that although many ranges may cater to women and youth, but none are designed especially for women, their friends and family. So, to meet the need, Susan opened Family Fun Indoor Range in 2013. In 2019, Susan and her husband Vladimir moved the company to a new facility located in the foothills of the Smoky Mountains in Sevierville, TN where millions of visitors who visit the area each year can enjoy the indoor range. There are multiple SFWA Master Instructors who are all volunteers that teach the TN Enhanced Handgun Carry Permit Class, Basic Safety Classes, Kids Classes, Advanced Classes and Speciality Classes at Family Fun Indoor Range. Check out the course options on the menu bar and sign up for one today! They fill up fast. SFWA is a non-profit and (for example) a confirmed seat in the TNEHCP class is only $28! Best of all you can shoot all day at the range for only $12 per person, including eye and ear protection and a FREE target! SFWA also mentors young people toward becoming responsible firearms owners and trains master instructors by invitation.

In 2018, SFWA's Founder surpassed 100,000 women* students she has taught full-day handgun safety, marksmanship, legalities when carrying a gun for self defense and advanced courses . . .  

(*not to mention the men they brought with them)

. . . and to date, we have not located another woman in the world who has taught that many!

"Actually, I personally never concentrated on the number of students but have focused more on how to assure my students are not involved in a shooting or accident with a firearm. The national average is 6% of an instructor's students will most likely unfortunately become a statistic suffering bodily injury or death. I have only had 2 students out of 100,000+ [.00002%] who fall within the statistic; and sadly, one of them shot the other in a domestic situation. The student who died was Bobbie and in her honor we have identified the most important safety rule as "Bobbie's Rule" which has become an important part of our courses since 2008. Best of all, none of our students have failed a class. It is our job as instructors to assure each student passes with the highest scores possible . . . that is why I believe that 90% of all SFWA students shoot 90% or higher when qualifying even if they have never shot a gun before."-Susan Romanov

Listen to SFWA's Founder Talk About Why SFWA Was Started 17 Years Ago . . .

This video was filmed at Shooting for Women Alliance's 2004 Conference in Nashville, TN

Later, we learned that SFWA was the first organization in the firearms industry to hold a shooting conference specifically for women. The conference was attended by women from all parts of the country and included women who were seasoned shooters, celebrities who love the shooting sports, industry professionals and ladies who were new to firearms, too. Best of all, it was an experience unlike any other where women built lifelong friendships, learned shooting skills and techniques that have continued to be important in their growth in the shooting sports and personal protection. Smith and Wesson's Ken Sedlecky [recipient of the first NSSF's Ken Sedlecky Lifetime Achievement Award in the industry, for which the award was named) and Paul Pluff who was SFWA's initial "Wind Beneath Our Wings" and other sponsors and SFWA volunteers helped make the event a huge success with their support of the conference and dedication to women's needs in sport and protection.

Our Founder Through The Years

Susan Held Hostage In Her Home in 1992 for 5 1/2 Hours at Knife-Point and Stalked for 2 Years 

Knoxville, TN 1992-1994

Before there were handgun carry permits for civilians or [according to the salesman at the time] guns for girls, Susan was living in fear for her life without a break for 2 years and 5 1/2 hours. Since that time, Susan has donated her time to helping other women increase the odds they will prevail if attacked. Necessity being the mother of invention has proven true from selection of the right gun and gear to awareness, handgun retention and training that provides the mindset to find the Wonder Woman in You when your life depends on it. Truth in Training® emerged in the process . . . 

Susan Hosts 1st Ever Women's Luncheon at SHOT Show . . . FREE!

Las Vegas, NV 2003

Fun Fact: There where so many women in attendance that at the last minute, the menu was changed to salad, bread and drinks only [minus the chicken] to accommodate the unexpected number of industry women who attended. No one cared, it was such a great time! Paul Pluff was awarded the 1st SFWA Eagle Award at the luncheon and the look on his face was priceless! He was truly "The Wind Beneath Our Wings" since 2001!

Susan Stops Publishing SFW Magazine and Focuses on Training

November 2005

Already in the works, SFWA's civilian training materials were completed and Susan turned her time toward empowering women to increase the odds they will prevail if attacked from a civilian-oriented perspective.

Susan Starts SFWA University

Tennessee 2009

Advanced courses that take women beyond the basics were complied to address the real-life scenarios civilians face in a self defense situation. The curriculum was written by Susan from the many aspects of training that are necessary for a civilian to go from hitting a paper target on a shooting range well using proper trigger pull and other marksmanship skills to training to recognize a threat, decide whether to run or fight and the perform when seconds count. 

Susan Publishes a Special SFW Edition to Help Women Determine the Best Handgun and Gear for Self Defense  

January 2014

As women continued to be frustrated by purchasing guns and gear that really were not suited to their individual uniqueness, and being stuck with expensive equipment that could not be returned, Susan put together SFWA's experiences with tens-of-thousands of students input to help women determine what it really meant to find a gun and gear that fits. This issue was released for the first time in conjunction with the LADIES CHOICE Awards. It is not about simply trying before you buy and shooting a lot of guns to pick one that feels the best. It's What Women Want and we have a course for that!

SFWA Introduces Prestigious Ladies Choice Awards

Las Vegas, NV 2015

SFWA presented awards to 15 industry leaders whose products were preferred by tens-of-thousands of women who selected guns and gear that were perfect for women. Many have received the award multiple times. SFWA does not sell or endorse products for a fee and the winners are not selected by SFWA, but by the women who have participated in SFWA courses.

Susan Trains Women Who Were Initially Afraid of Guns to Become SFWA Master Instructors with Skills That Meet or Exceed Industry Standards

2013 to Present

Susan's unprecedented highly successful approach to training civilians to become firearms instructors [by invitation only] has even mentored women who initially lacked the knowledge or comfort to safely and effectively handle handguns into becoming master instructors capable of teaching women (and men) the skills and techniques necessary to increase the odds they will prevail if attacked. Many were apprehensive being around handguns for various reasons and yet overcame those fears to make a difference for others who are initially insecure around guns. The same approach has proven effective for veteran trainers alike who wanted to teach the largest growing segment of the industry with methods that produce exceptional results that far exceed typical instructor training programs.

Susan Shoots Multiple Shots in One Hole . . . One Handed 

2008 to Present

After getting mono-vision contacts [up close being set at the distance of her front sight] in 2017, Susan could feel her dominant eye moving her off point. Since then, Susan has had to use the one-handed shooting skill she mastered in 2008; unless she shoots with two eyes open. You can too!

Susan Consults for 50 Year Old Gun Store and Shooting Range 

Tennessee 1997-1999

A marketing and business consultant since 1979, Susan professionally entered the shooting industry in 1997 while taking a well established firearms business to the next level. Since that time, Susan has gained the respect of manufacturers and industry professionals as a publisher, writer, motivational speaker, firearms expert and innovative trainer. 

Susan MC's 1st Ever Ladies Fashion Show Presented on the SHOT Show Main Floor

Las Vegas, NV 2004

SFWA was asked to organize and present the 1st ever Fashion Showcase of Guns and Gear for Ladies which was featured on the big stage twice a day on the main floor of the SHOT Show . . . Susan MC'd in guys gear that was not made for women while ladies beautifully attired in newly designed gear for women were escorted on and off the stage by Ed Monk, gallantly dressed in his tux!

Susan Begins Teaching SFWA FREE Handgun Carry Permit Courses at BassPro

Tennessee 2007 

These classes are still offered FREE and by a pre-class donation of only $28 to SFWA! All instructors who co-teach teach these classes volunteer their time and talents to support the mission of SFWA. 

Susan Serves 3 Years On Hollywood Celebrity Shoot Board of Directors

California 2002-2005

Susan has earned the respect of many celebrities who share common interests in the shooting sports and personal protection. Many have become special friends who have continued to support the mission of SFWA. One such person is Leslie Easterbrook [police woman series blonde beauty] who surprised Susan in 2004 with a video filmed by Leslie's husband wherein Leslie sings the National Anthem acapella on her balcony in CA.

Susan's Inspirational Story Published In The Women Of A Different Caliber Series Has Been Recently Updated 

2009 to present

There are many women who have suffered grave situations or whom have made significant accomplishments with determination and whose stories are worth telling. Through the years, SFWA has included the stories of such women both in print and on our WDC's  facebook page. Email us if you have a story you would like to share.

Susan Produces Exclusive Personal & Home Protection Ladies Conference

Tennessee 2013 to Present

Women are very interested in what happens next after getting their handgun carry permit. To fill the need, SFWA began 3 day conferences that contained all of the signature features of our very first conference in 2003 and they have continued to fill up to capacity. These are hands on conferences where the ladies take fast-paced training designed to fit into their busy lifestyles yet better prepare them to succeed in a personal and home defense situation.

Shooting Industry Manufacturers Turn to Susan as Expert

2012 to Present

Various gun manufacturers and producers of gear for women shooters have relied on the expertise Susan has acquired having taught thousands of women and helped them work through the particulars of getting custom-fit for guns and gear that fit a woman's unique individual qualities. For example: Susan wrote a 400 page report comparing various popular models of carry pistols for one manufacturer which resulted in adjustment of the trigger pull and operation of a now popular .380 semi-auto; upgraded another manufacturer's 9mm; and helped make design changes that improved the sight capabilities of 357 revolver. Behind the scenes, Susan has contributed to the design of various holster and carry purse products, gun cases, and even refined a high-end knife manufacturer's 1911 style self defense knife for women. 

Susan Developed An Exclusive Technique To Assure Instructors Can Teach Students to Shoot Multiple Bullets in the Same Hole 

2008 to Present

Susan has taken the ability to effectively diagnose shooting errors to a higher level that exceeds any of the "Shooting Charts" circulating today.  A SFWA online course is being developed for students and instructors alike based on a book currently in the works by SFWA's Founder. It is not about Susan, it is about others being able to shoot multiple bullets in the same hole at 21 feet away, one handed, too. Many have asked Susan why she doesn't participate in competitions, to which she always replies, "as the late great Jeff Cooper believed, training for personal protection is not a game. It is a way of life that will help keep you alive when seconds count." Susan understands and supports organizations such as "A Girl and A Gun" and the fun many women have shooting various stations with different types of guns. it is just not something Susan dedicates her time doing. Pictured above is Coni Brooks [first 2-shots in one hole] who is a member and accomplished chapter leader of AGAG and a SFWA Certified Instructor [2018]. Did you know that after not doing well shooting during a multi-day handgun training course at a well-known firearms training school, Coni almost gave up shooting handguns? 

Susan Starts Shooting for Women Magazine

National Distribution 2001

As a publisher at the time of 14 other titles nationally, Susan saw the need for a publication for women that was not the norm in the industry . . . so, she took the project on and was extremely successful with 250,000 distribution nationally until she stopped publishing regularly due to having cancer in late 2005. SFW still publishes special editions related to specific topics of interest to women.

Susan Produces 1st Ever National Ladies Shooting Conference

Nashville, 2004

Ladies gathered from all parts of the country to learn about the shooting sports and personal protection . . . the conference made national news on the FOX Channel! The conference came about after many women approached Susan at NRA's Annual Meeting in 2003 to help them receive more training instead of just listening to speakers talk about women of the NRA. It was later that SFWA learned that it was the first ever conference for women in the industry. After Nashville, SFWA took the conference to Phoenix where it was another awesome experience. 

Susan Teaches Shotgun


While continuing her passion for helping women with increasing their odds they will prevail if attacked, Susan worked in some time for shotgunning. In this photo, she is breaking the clay after it is missed by a veteran shooter and bird hunter . . . and just in case you were wondering, no lead was dropped in the water . . .  special thanks to Remington for providing SFWA with lead-free shells.

Susan's Interview Becomes 2nd Most Watched on Canadian News Program

Las Vegas, NV 2013

At the time, Canadian citizens were trying to protect the right to keep and bear arms. Women were very concerned about being able to defend themselves in their own homes and in their daily lives. The interview was 2nd only to a similar interview of Ted Nugent at the time; but it was the absolute favorite among female viewers and still is 7 years later. SFWA has members in countries outside of the US who support its mission for the empowerment of women in the shooting sports and self defense.

Susan Acquires a 6,500 sq ft Building to House SFWA University

Tennessee, 2011

With the growth of SFWA's Master Instructor Certifications and SFWA University Advanced Course Curriculum increasing in numbers, Susan purchased this building in downtown Knoxville, TN. It was also the second handgun carry permit school in the state. The third was housed in Nashville, TNThe third was housed in Nashville, TN; and the fourth was in Kingston, TN.  

Susan Opens Only Shooting Range in the Country Designed Specifically for Women, Their Friends and Family

Tennessee 2013 to Present

The first location of Family Fun Indoor Range [run solely by SFWA volunteers for 5 years] was in Kingston, TN at an older 5 lane range Susan rented and reopened with the help of volunteers upgraded to deliver what women want for themselves, their friends and family. In 2019, Susan and her husband decided to move to the beautiful Great Smoky Mountains, purchased an 11 lane range recently closed and turned it into the new home of SFWA and Family Fun Indoor Range that is exclusively remarkable. Visitors come from all over the world and locals are blessed with what women want in their own neighborhood.

Susan Introduces SFWA Unplugged

January, 2017 to Present

After being a part of the industry for more than 20 years, Susan finally decided to step up and talk "Unplugged" about many inappropriate training methods for civilians and others that will not increase the odds of prevailing in a real-life encounter when seconds count, especially for women. In a world where it is customary to ignore what others do and focus on your qualities when you speak in pubic, the "Truth in Training®" program is designed to bring to the forefront for discussion the ineffectiveness of many techniques being taught by some of the industry's more publicized "experts" and talk about why or why not use of those techniques are effective for civilians.

NRA Consults with Susan to Improve NRA Instructor and Student Training for Women.  She Disarms the Head of the NRA Training and Instructor Program 3 Times to Emphasize a Substantial Fear Women Face When Carrying a Handgun for Personal Protection   

TN and VA, 2015 to 2017

"Susan, we have reached out to various leaders in the industry to improve our training techniques for instructors; and fact is, you are one in a million! It is a privilege to work with you toward our mutual goals," Bill Poole explained when he visited SFWA's range in Tennessee for a few days. He could not believe that Susan disarmed him [while having a solid grip on his carry gun] three times without a struggle. "Thanks for doing that in private!" he said. Susan smiled that he was able to experience one of the biggest fears women have when they carry a gun for protection. What he did not know was that SFWA would tell all of our students from then on and emphasize how committed he and Kyle Weaver and a few others on the team were to helping women with SFWA's "Truth in Training®"  perspective. When Kyle and Bill left the NRA, so did Susan's desire to help the organization.  Since 2007, Susan has held multiple NRA Instructor Credentials.

Susan Starts Shooting for Women Alliance a [501(c)3] Non-Profit

Tennessee 2003

Shooting for Women Alliance was formed to handle events and training by donation to further the mission of empowering women toward the shooting sports and personal protection. Click to View a short video put together by a group of college students in 2014 who loved what we do and wanted to raise money for SFWA. None receives a paycheck from the non-profit which is run by all volunteers. SFWA is not a women's shooting group or sales organization of women's products. 

Susan's Miracle Healing from Cancer

October 2005

If you look closely, you can see a lump of cancer in her neck which she never saw in this photo until after the cancer was gone. It was the kids who actually noticed it first while participating in Backyard Adventures in Christ with Wilson and the Praise Pals, a children's church interactive puppet ministry Susan authored in the 1980's which is being filmed today with more than 100 episodes to be shared with kids worldwide. Susan was fully healed . . .  

SFWA has booth at NSSF's SHOT Show Since 2003

2003 to Present

With the exception of one year, since 2003, SFWA has been provided a booth at SHOT Show by NSSF to support our non-profit efforts of empowering women toward all the shooting sports have to offer. Many of SFWA's projects have been premiered at the SHOT Show through the years. 

Susan Interviews Florida Professor Who Conducted 15 Year Study on Kids and Guns and Produces SFW Special Edition for Gun Proofing Kids

January 2015

After viewing a story aired on ABC's show 20-20 about kids and guns in 2014, Susan sought to find the Truth in Training® when it comes to teaching children about guns. Discovering that the NRA's Eddie Eagle Program failed with every participant was horrifying. Susan's research included a lengthy discussion with the actual woman professor who had conducted the research. Children are the gun owners of tomorrow and things are very different than when we were young. Susan produced a Special Edition of Shooting for Women to help educate civilians about "Gun Proofing Kids". Sadly, there are many who get it wrong.  

SFWA Raises Money for Little Maximus

Florida 2015

SFWA rose to the occasion to help precious Maximus who is the son of an industry professional who had unexpectedly lost his job along with the president when the manufacturer came under new ownership and Maximus needed expensive medical treatments. Today, Maximus is enjoying his new younger brother and is still a blessing to his family.

Susan Introduces Training for Realtors

November, 2017

The profession of a Realtor uniquely positions agents in compromising situations which require hands-on knowledge and techniques to effectively do their job while protecting themselves. Susan applied more than 25 years working in the real estate development industry nationally to the intricacies of personal protection and launched a FREE seminar for women Realtors that can be taught by other Realtors or instructors across the country.

Susan Works with Former FBI Agent to Develop A One-Of-A Kind Regional Church Security  Round Table Symposium

Spring, 2020

The profession of a Realtor uniquely positions agents in compromising situations which require hands-on knowledge and techniques to effectively do their job while protecting themselves. Susan applied more than 25 years working in the real estate development industry nationally to the intricacies of personal protection and launched a FREE seminar for women Realtors that can be taught by other Realtors or instructors across the country.

Outside of the Industry, Susan is Filming 100+ Episodes of Backyard Adventures In Christ with Wilson and the Praise Pals an interactive Puppet Ministry Children's Church She Created 

1993 to Present

After writing Childrens Stories from the Heart object lesson books for children's pastors and teachers in 1993, it grew into a full hour-long children's church puppet ministry wherein the kids interact with the puppets "in the backyard" [with the longstanding charm of a Little Rascals episode] and learn everyday life lessons with the help of an abandoned missionary's dog [Wilson] who is wise in the teachings of the King James Bible. The series appeared as the main show on the stage of the Historic Tennessee Theatre in Knoxville, TN during a grade school graduation for statewide homeschoolers in 2009. It is a labor of love Susan and her husband Vladimir are working on to offer the series worldwide with all of the proceeds going to pay for supplies needed by reputable orphanages.

In 2017, Shooting for Women Alliance was the first civilian organization of its kind invited to work with the flagship simulator company that designed the aviator simulator used to train our military in World War II to allow SFWA to provide real-life simulator training that works in conjunction with our exclusive advance course curriculum to help civilians increase the odds they will prevail in a personal defense situation. The initial cost was $28,000 to $45,000 per unit per instructor. Today, SFWA has produced the simulator experience at a cost of less than $5,000 per training facility! Please Email us for more information.

[Sorry, the Rest of This Story is only accessible to SFWA Master Certified Instructors. Email us . . . you may have what it takes.]

We encourage you to visit to learn more about The Only Range In The Country Designed Especially For Women, Their Friends and Family  . . . and check out our social media pages, too!


Shooting for Women Alliance, Headquarters
1874 Country Meadows Drive, Sevierville, TN


Directions to our Range located in the beautiful Foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains!


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