Paul was born in Evansville, Indiana where he and his two brothers Bob and Chris grew up. They were involved in the outdoors at a very young age; camping, canoeing, fishing, hunting, and swimming. As members of Boy Scouts of America, all three boys earned the highest rank, Eagle Scout, by age 15. Experts in wilderness survival, the boys were asked to conduct a summer-long wilderness survival camp for Boy Scout troops in southern Indiana.
Paul had a fascination for archery hunting and purchased his first bow at age 13. Over the years he has hunted in Alaska, Colorado, Utah, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, and Texas; he harvested elk, mule deer, whitetail deer, bear, wild hog, turkey and grouse. Over a seven year period he took month-long trips to Colorado backpacking into the mountains, and on three of these treks he took no food, relying on his archery skills to survive.
Paul and Chris started competitive swimming at the age of 5 and were both city champions every year until age 16 when they moved to Panama City, Florida. They continued swimming throughout their high school years. Chris then entered college on a swimming scholarship, and Paul pursued another passion, law enforcement, where he competed in the Police Olympics, setting both state and world records. He competed in three international Olympic venues, taking him as far as Sydney Australia. In his final international competition, Paul earned 7 gold medals in swimming and a silver in the "Toughest Cop in the World" competition, which is comprised of a multitude of strenuous physical events.
While working with inner city youth in the police athletic league, Paul was challenged to get in the boxing ring with a much larger opponent which resulted in his first knockout and another new passion. He continued to box, compiling an impressive record of 33-1. All 33 wins were by knockout, and the loss was a split decision. He was offered a professional contract in boxing, but the decision was made for him when he broke his hand in the line of duty.
Paul accepted a request to be a member of his department's first SWAT team. Throughout his tenure on this team he took on additional duties. First, he was promoted to detective, working undercover narcotics. From there he served in a burglary tactical unit, then moved on to investigations where he specialized in homicide.
He was then approached to design and conduct a physical fitness program for the Panama City Police Department, and was sent to Glenco, Georgia to the federal training grounds to become a certified instructor. He implemented a physical training test and placed every officer on a personal diet and workout program which produced immediate positive results in physical well-being and readiness.
During a two year period of his next phase of police work, Paul identified over 500 suspects from finger prints, all resulting in arrests. He was awarded many certificates of commendation, one for solving a high profile bank robbery where three suspects had committed more than 48 prior bank robberies ranging from Boston to Florida, and their final crime occurring in Panama City. He was awarded "Officer of the Year" in 1991 for his work in solving several murder cases for the Panama City Police Department and the Bay County Sheriffs Office. One of the cases, in which Paul solved a month long investigation into a brutal murder by identifying a suspect by a footprint, was featured on Court TV where he was credited for his keen knowledge of the outdoors and unique ability in solving the crime.
Paul retired from the department in 1996. In 1998 he started a career in wildlife photography. After thorough research of equipment, he settled on Nikon for the tool in his new trade. After purchasing his first camera he spent two weeks practicing and learning as many features of the equipment as time would allow, then packed his jeep and headed out west to the Rocky Mountains for a three month photo trip. He spent that time backpacking in Colorado, Wyoming, and Montana. There he felt the onset of the lifelong passion and addiction to photography, or in his words, "hunting with a camera". He repeated the three month trip the following year with more knowledge, more experience, and an even greater sense of fulfillment in capturing life outdoors.
In April of 2000, Paul was hired as Director of Security for Club LaVela, the largest night club in the United States. During the busy season for the club, he shoots photography in and around the Panama City area on a near daily basis. After Labor Day he heads out west or up north for his archery and photo hunting trips and does not return to Florida until after the first of the year to start hiring staff for the club.
Photography has become a way of life for Paul. He entered his first photography competition in 2001. While he did not place in that first attempt, he enjoyed the competition. Moreover, seeing the incredible photography that was entered, Paul was further inspired to perfect his new found craft and lifelong passion. Since then, he received the following awards:
2003 Pelican, honorable mention, animal division
2004 Snowy Egret, 1st place, animal division
2007 Bobcat, 1st place, animal division
2008 First Flight, 1st place, animal division
Eagle, 2nd place, color division
2009 Robbins, 1st place, animal division
Frog, 1st place, color division
2010 Jumping Rainbow Trout, Best of Show
Great Egret with Fish, 2nd place, new professional division
2011 Royal Terns, 1st place and peoples choice
Roatan Paradise, 3rd place, and peoples choice
The "First Flight" picture was also entered into National Geographic's Your Shot competition. The shot was selected and can be seen on their web site in the Royal Terns category. In 2010 Paul's "Jumping Rainbow Trout" won best of show in Faces and Facets National Photography Competition and was selected for National Geographic's Your Shot competition as well as being an Editors Choice pick. In 2011 Paul was asked to judge Faces and Facets National Photography Competition. He felt judging was an honor, but he also found it to be a difficult task; there were so many incredible photographs, so many talented individuals to consider behind the lens, and the hours of diligently comparing work side-by-side only instilled a greater sense of appreciation for the shared passion of fellow artists.