Hal Humphreys talks with Eli Wilkerson, a former LEO and a combat veteran who is currently transitioning into a career as a professional investigator.
Eli Wilkerson is a CFE and private investigator in Amarillo, Texas. He’s a US Army veteran of the Afghan war with ten-plus years of law enforcement experience. After leaving the Texas Highway Patrol, he worked hard to prepare himself for a new career as a professional investigator in the private sector. He did everything right, stacking up credentials. Developed skills in cyber investigations, OSINT, fraud examination, and investigative interviewing. He earned an MBA from West Texas A&M and got his CFE certificate in 2015 – three months apart.
He started researching how to get a PI license in Texas and studied how to start and run a business. Late in 2019, he opened his PI firm, Praxis Detection Services. Eli figured early 2020 would be a great time to network with attorneys and other potential clients, and he expected to be going strong by summer of 2020.
Summer 2020 had other plans for Eli Wilkerson … and all of us.
“I received my license in September 2019 and went live with Praxis in October. With a barebones website and business cards, I picked up the phone, started calling lawyer friends asking to buy them a lunch to discuss what I could offer. I honestly didn’t expect much due to the holidays. I figured that the first quarter of 2020 would be prime for meetings and local networking, followed by some business traction in summer 2020…” —Eli Wilkerson
As individuals and as an industry, we are reeling in the wake of a global pandemic and recession. What will the next year of private investigations look like? The next ten years? In hearing how things have gone so far for Eli and Praxis, and discussing his plans for the future of his business, we offer a glimpse of the many ways PIs have endured this year, and gain a little insight into the future of work itself in the wake of a world-changing pandemic year.