Seventeen years ago, Elijah Shaw was working as a bouncer for a Chicago nightclub when the club's owner, Cliff Levingston, then a forward for the Chicago Bulls, asked Shaw to be his bodyguard. In 1998, Shaw launched his own firm, Icon Services, which earns most of its $3 million in annual revenue protecting high-profile clientele. Shaw and his 36 employees, many of whom have law enforcement backgrounds, have shielded Usher, Tara Reid, 50 Cent, and Naomi Campbell.

What I Can't Live Without

Premier attaché case

"This 7-pound aluminum case has carried everything from $2 million in diamonds for a courier assignment to a turkey-on-wheat Subway sandwich." $590,

C-Series body armor
"This isn't the most lightweight vest, but if I ever have to take a bullet for a client, all these years of lugging around a few extra pounds will be worth it." $499,

Evander oxfords
"In the field, I can spend up to 22 hours a day on my feet. It's important to have a shoe that's comfortable and looks good with a suit." $90,

What I Covet

A time-share in St.-Tropez
"I visited once with a client who was a guest of Giorgio Armani, and it's officially my favorite place on earth. This French town has it all: pristine beaches, great dining, beautiful women, excellent shopping, the wildest parties around, and, most important, potential clients." Up to $200,000 for three months.