About Matt

Founder. Owner. Watch lover.


“If you could wake up tomorrow and be anything, what would it be?” my wife asked, wondering how I was going to deal with my transition from the CIA into “normal” life. She said it, though, as a challenge. My acceptance was in my answer, “I’d make watches,” I said. “I’d be a watch maker.”

I have been fascinated by mechanical wrist watches and pocket watches and clocks my entire life. Cheap ones, expensive ones, big ones, ones that hang on the wall and have carved birds that chirp the hours away, like at my Grandma’s house, or one that sits on a mantle, like in the house I grew up in, with large brass hands and a sing-song quarter hour chime. Each, in their own way, regal keepers of the past and guardians of the future. I love them all. The way the chain of a pocket watch sits against a jacket, like a leash, holding onto the wilds of time. I still have the diver’s watch I bought almost 35 years ago, when I was in eighth grade. It sits next to an heirloom Rolex - a gift from a mentor and friend. To me, they are equally wonderful.

I grew up in the Pacific Northwest and began my professional life as a police officer. During that time I worked hard and did more than was asked of me. I was awarded the Life Saving Medal, the Medal of Valor, and the law enforcement Medal of Honor. After 9/11, I became one of a small number of reconstituted US Federal Air Marshal Service, serving on America’s first line against terrorism, where I was commended for performance multiple times, developed a mentoring program, and was named the honor graduate at the FBI SWAT school. I worked hard and did more than was asked of me. I continued my service in the War on Terror with the Central Intelligence Agency, where I spent the past twelve years, until the challenge from my wife about my unknown tomorrows. It was my honor to serve within America’s finest intelligence service. I worked hard and did more than was asked of me.

These details of my background matter. I am intimately familiar with how time relates to the events that shape our lives and our world, both future, present, and past. My professional life has been built on precision, integrity, and commitment. These same values are the heart of ARES. This company is new and I want to assure you as a buyer that ARES is a company that is built upon principle, that treats every person with respect, and is dedicated to service. ARES isn’t going anywhere; the same attention to detail that I have exhibited my entire professional life is carried into the character of ARES. At ARES we work hard and do more than is asked - or expected - of us. We are honored to create our version of the regal keepers of the past and guardians of the future.

With ARES I am building a watch company, not just a watch. The abundance of tech and fabrication in the Pacific Northwest will, eventually, allow ARES to produce many of the components of our watches in house. That is the goal I have set for us: the domestic manufacture of each of our products. We are starting small, but we are starting. Three critical components make the goal attainable: watch makers, machinists, and vision. ARES has some of the finest watchmakers in the world, held to a standard established by the Swiss watch industry. A portion of the proceeds of each ares Timer are committed to scholarships and grants to train and support the next generation of watchmakers. It is the right thing to do.

ARES has skilled machinists who can manufacture critical components, often intricate in size and detail, and are the second pillar of our foundation. The roots of the aerospace and defense industries run deep in this state, and I have sourced machinists from both fields.

Our third pillar is vision. ARES is about the future of American manufacturing, American craftsmanship, and American jobs. We are committed to the art of American watch making: to our American watchmakers building American watches, to our watch buyers, and to the longevity of building an American tool watch making company. ARES has the best watchmakers, working with the best materials, to produce the best watches, and back them with the best guarantee. We work hard and do more than is asked of us.

ARES’ first release is the DIVER-1, a watch that represents everything I have wanted in an operational dive watch. The specifications are mine and meet my needs for an operational diver. DIVER-1 was designed by me, drawn and sketched by hand in books and journals over the years. All DIVER-1 watches will be hand finished, assembled, quality assured, and serviced here in Seattle. We build them, we test them, we certify them, and then we send them out the door.

Our quality comes from our character. I guarantee everything we make. Ares watches are covered to the original owner against manufacturing defects in materials and workmanship for the lifetime of the product.

Time, and the function of time, is the single characteristic that binds all of our lives equally, regardless of where - or who - on this earth we are. Time is the only constant that we note as a species, both when we are born and when we die.I started ARES to build the instruments that I have always wanted to have: as a child, enamored by a watch’s mechanics; as a professional, a master of its precision; and as a craftsman, a creator of how we perceive it.

An ARES watch is a tool. Work hard and do more than is expected of you.