End Users '20 under 40' 2014—Bedros Ohanian

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Bedros Ohanian, 36

Commander, field services division, The Music Center, Los Angeles

Ohanian, an Army veteran who served in Kuwait during Operation Desert Spring, was a NATO peacekeeper in Bosnia, a reserve police officer in Glendale, Calif., and a federal officer at NASA’s jet propulsion labs, manages security technology and 85 armed security officers for his 22-acre facility. The Music Center, one of the largest performing arts centers in the United States, is home to the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Ahmanson Theater, Mark Taper Forum, Walt Disney Concert Hall and Grand Park. It hosts 2 million visitors per year.

What inspired you to get into the security industry?

It was a direct result of the training I received in the military and as a reserve police officer. I saw how good security can save lives, protect assets and prevent crime.

If you could have any technology you wanted, without regard to budget, what would it be?

It would be video analytics, intelligent video surveillance. We have only a few people monitoring more than 300 cameras. We’d have a better chance of detecting suspicious people and behavior with that technology.

What’s your biggest physical security challenge today, and what do you think it will be five years from now?
The biggest challenge is a lack of security awareness within the organization and from outside when we have visitors. All our physical security infrastructure can be working just fine but is compromised if the people we’re trying to protect don’t take threats seriously. If one of them is entering through an access control gate and someone wanted to tailgate, they need to know that security is everyone’s duty. They need to report suspicious activity. We are working on (awareness programs.) Five years from now I think it will still be security awareness. People move on, we get new employees.