Face of Defense
Meet The Daniels – Marty Daniel + Cindy Daniel + precision firearms = Daniel Defense, recognized by Inc. Magazine for three years running as one of the fastest growing private companies in America. This year marks the 15th anniversary since the Daniels paired to start the small firearms business which engineers and manufactures custom and readymade rifles, parts and accessories, worldwide.
Marty serves as the engineering brains; Cindy is Executive VP and Chief Marketing Officer. “We’ve worked very hard, and it has taken a long time to get here,” Cindy says. “I’m still blown away by the opportunity we’ve been given,” her husband adds.
Things didn’t come easy, though. After failing out of the engineering program at Georgia Southern University - twice, Marty’s mother got him a job working in the sawmill. “My mother was continuing my education, and I didn’t even know it,” says Marty. Not only did Marty talk his way back in for the third time, but made the Dean’s List and graduated with an electrical engineering degree.
Soon after, Marty decided to go into business for himself; his garage door and fireplace company eventually became the first home for Daniel Defense in 2001. Although Daniel Defense was still a small company, in 2003, it went toe-to-toe with every major defense-industry manufacturer for the U.S. SOCOM contract. In order to compete, Marty’s father supported his son’s business and bet the family farm. “I remember walking out of the bank with him and thinking, I don’t believe I would have done that if I were him,” says Marty. But Daniel Defense was awarded the contract in 2005.
Today, Daniel Defense is known for its innovation and quality products. Its end users include the military, law enforcement, and individuals who use rifles for hunting, target practice, competition, and self-defense. Marty and Cindy hope that one day they can get away from the day-to-day tasks and spend more time shooting at the range and hunting. “I love going to the range and seeing a shooter’s smiling face when they shoot an AR for the first time,” says Cindy. However, they know it will take a great team to accomplish it. “Both of us have learned that we need to hire people smarter than us to help us get it all done. We are on the right path in making that happen,” says Marty. Cindy seconded, “We have a great team.”
What does tomorrow bring? As Daniel Defense engineering and production evolves with the next phase of firearm and accessory development, Marty is looking outside the walls of his company for growth opportunities. Last year, he collaborated with Governor Nathan Deal and Georgia Southern University to help create the new Manufacturing Engineering Degree program to benefit the next generation of engineers.
“Our business relies on confidence in relationships. Having a successful company like this is about having the right people in place.”
– Marty Daniel, CEO, Daniel Defense
101 warfighter way, Black creek, ga danieldefense.com 912.851.3234