About Us

OnTarget Challenge, Inc.
15312 Spencerville Court, Suite 100
Burtonsville, MD 20866

Dr. Paul Davis is founder of First Responder Institute, a 501(c)(3), philanthropic organization dedicated to supporting the public safety sector through research and education programs designed to improve health, fitness, readiness and survivability.
He earned his doctoral degree from the University of Maryland, School of Public Heath, Department of Kinesiology where he placed major emphasis on the study of occupational fitness requirements and the quantification of work physiology. His dissertation on the energy costs and oxygen/lactate kinetics of structural firefighting was the first published study of its kind.

He has consulted for a number of law enforcement organizations, including the DEA, US Secret Service, Pennsylvania State Police, US Marshals Service, IACP and the FBI. Projects of note have included the development of job-related physical performance and medical standards for a number of law enforcement agencies. Dr. Davis has also conducted in-depth studies of the requirements for swat, k-9, and industrial security positions. Most recently under contract to FOH (Federal Occupational Health) he designed the entry and graduation criteria for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), IEAs (Immigration Enforcement Agents). In another FOH contract he was part of a White Paper team tasked with a yearlong comprehensive study in the Southwest for the US Border Patrol to mitigate workers comp injuries.

As a consultant to the US Navy, he validated the Marine Corps’ PT test through a comprehensive JTA (job task analysis) of essential functions in amphibious, jungle, desert and high altitude, cold weather operations.

An internationally recognized authority on the subject of fitness standards and equal employment opportunity issues, Dr. Davis has participated in over 60 legal proceedings as an expert witness. In the seminal Lanning v SEPTA case, he won the accolades of the presiding federal judge as “the preeminent expert on physical performance standards.” He has appeared on behalf of such organizations as the U.S. Department of Justice, osha, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and the FBI, as well as many other state and local governments. He has also testified before the House Select Committee on Aging regarding performance-based health and fitness assessment.

Dr. Davis is a member and fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine (acsm) and holds that organization’s highest level of certification. He has authored over 200 technical reports, manuals, articles and most recently co-authored with Dr. Brian Sharkey the book: Hard Work, dealing with his research on the relationship between human physical performance factors and health.

Consistent with his lifelong commitment to promoting first responder health, fitness, and readiness, Dr. Davis is well known for creating unique public safety competitions including: the Firefighter Combat Challenge® (now in its 19th season), the L.E.O.P.A.R.D. (Law Enforcement Officer Performance and Reaction Drill), the World SWAT Challenge, and the Army's Best Ranger Competition. Throughout the years, these programs have received very wide televised coverage on the ESPN, A&E and Versus television networks and, as the creator and expert commentator, Dr. Davis provides color commentary for each


Firefighter Combat Challenge®
The flagship program of OTC is the Scott Firefighter Combat Challenge. We will enter our 13th season this year with a tour that will visit approximately 20 US venues and through our Canadian licensee, another 12 events. ESPN and ESPN2 have carried our program for the past 11 years. We also distribute the show through Armed Forces Network as well as international syndication. We own the home video and closed circuit broadcast rights. Approximately 3,500 firefighters from 750 unique fire departments participate annually. Since first bursting on the scene in 1992, the Challenge evokes nearly 100% unprompted brand recognition within this community. It is the longest running fire-related program on TV and generates media visibility at every venue.