Safe LivinG: Empowerment Through Firearm Safety


The Safe LivinG experience is led by experienced instructors from a variety of disciplines. From left:
Kelsey Crouch, Pilar Cobb, Suzi Greenlee, Diane Martinez and Brittany O’Conner. (Not pictured: Kelly Phillips)

It should come as no surprise personal protection tops the list of reasons gun owners give for owning a firearm. According to a 2023 Pew Research survey, about three-quarters (72%) of gun owners say that protection is a major reason they own a gun — up from 67% in 2017.

Yet, when interacting with prospective new shooters, many in the firearms industry are guilty of focusing too much on the gun ownership part and not enough on the motivating factors — safety and protection. One can’t say that about the team behind Safe LivinG.

A Natural Progression

In 2008, Karen Butler founded Shoot Like a Girl with a mission to empower women in shooting sports, catalyzing a transformation for thousands of women into confident gun owners and hunters. Recognizing the strength in unity, Butler collaborated with other female-focused gun groups, fostering a community of empowered women.

Over the years, her efforts have been showcased at various industry events, including the NSSF SHOT Show and NRA Annual Meetings & Exhibits, where her 53′ mobile range welcomes women to embark on their firearm journey.

In 2023, recognizing the need for broader outreach, Butler expanded her vision with the launch of Safe LivinG (under the SLG2 Inc. umbrella). This new initiative aims to empower men, women, families and communities in not only shooting sports but personal security overall.

I recently had the opportunity to participate in the Safe LivinG experience along with my 9-year-old daughter, who despite what I do for a living is reluctant to handle firearms. Upon arriving at the Bass Pro Shops store in Fort Mill, S.C., we were greeted in the parking lot by Pilar Cobb, a Georgia-based SLG team member whose interest in firearms began during her time in the Army.

Cobb shared there were decades between her time in the service and when she took up shooting recreationally. During this time, she pursued a career in the health and fitness industry, becoming a Certified Personal Trainer, Certified Exercise Nutrition Specialist, and an Institute of Integrative Nutrition Health Coaching graduate.

“I’m passionate about meeting people where they are and providing sound, safe, information to improve their life, confidence, and empowering clients to take control of their health and safety,” said Cobb. “I have been committed to being a lifelong learner and passing that information on to others in ways that are meaningful to them.”

Her own shooting journey made Cobb realize there was a need for training, specifically for women, which led her to pursue Basic Pistol, Refuse To Be a Victim, Range Safety Officer instructor certifications through the NRA and become a USCCA Training Counselor.

It’s this unique combination of skills and experience that make Cobb a valuable addition to the Shoot Like A Girl and Safe LivinG team.

More Than Guns

Housed in a 36′ trailer, Safe LivinG serves as a hub for authentic and factual knowledge on safety, covering topics such as situational awareness and firearm safety. Families are encouraged to participate, with children engaging in firearm safety discussions tailored to their age group.

Cobb walked us through the experience as if we had no prior knowledge of the organization or its mission, starting at the welcome desk. Here, participants sign in and receive a bag full of valuable information from SLG2 Inc.’s partners. This important step allows the organization and its partners to continue providing product and safety information long after the event is over.

From there, she led us through the various outdoor displays. The experience includes interactive demonstrations with on- and off-body carry options, the importance of safe storage, hunter safety, and non-lethal self-defense tools.

“I’ve had several families want to talk about safety for their high school- and college-aged girls,” said Cobb. “Since their age would prohibit them from having a firearm, we’re able to focus on pepper spray demonstrations and topics like situational awareness.”

Located along the exterior of the trailer was the gun bar, which affords participants the opportunity of side by side hands-on comparison of firearms from the top manufacturers. A television mounted above the gun bar offered a real-time look inside at one of Safe LivinG’s key features — an InVeris Training Solutions’ military-grade firearms simulator that provides a realistic shooting experience with recoil and sound feedback. The simulator allows attendees 18 years and older to handle and shoot handguns and long guns under the guidance of experienced instructors.

Though no projectiles are used, participants are still required to don hearing and eye protection. This hands-on approach instills confidence and fosters a deeper understanding of firearm safety.

Guests receive a bag full of valuable information — giving them the tools to continue gun safety
education long after their visit.

A Lasting Impact

Together with Shoot Like a Girl, more than 5,000 guests participated in the company’s interactive mobile shooting experiences last year and more than 36,500 total over the company’s 15 years in operation.

According to its 15-year Anniversary Impact Report, 60% of guests reported recruiting other people to try shooting sports. If they just recruited one person that would be a total of 58,524 people influenced by the Shoot Like a Girl and/or Safe LivinG experiences in the past 15 years.

The Safe LivinG trailer is making a total of 10 stops in 2024 to various Bass Pro Shops/Cabela’s locations throughout the country. To become a brand partner or learn more about how you can support their mission of making communities and homes safer by spreading the message of firearm safety and personal security, visit