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Don Erickson

A smart move by ISC, SIA and the WSC

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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

This is an old-fashioned industry in too many ways, so I'm always thrilled when I hear news like this: the Security Industry Association, ISC and the Women’s Security Council will be awarding a full scholarship for a woman student enrolled in the new Mercer County Community College security degree program in 2015.

“This scholarship program is made possible with financial support from SIA and ISC and we are incredibly honored by their support and generosity,” Rhianna Daniels, founding committee member of the WSC, told me. “The overall goal of the program is to increase diversity in the industry and allow more women to gain access to the great opportunities available in today's security market.”

The scholarship was announced at the Women’s Security Council reception at ISC West by Ed Several of Reed Exhibitions, which produces ISC events, and Don Erickson, CEO of SIA.

“The lack of women in the security industry is not a new problem, but in this role [CEO of SIA] I really believe it’s something we need to draw more attention to. This is a small example of how we’re doing this,” Erickson said.

The Mercer County Community College security degree program will be launched in the fall of 2015. It is a two-year program that will award degrees in: project management; security integration; product technology and security sales.

A SIA committee came up with the idea for the program last summer. Key participants on that committee are Dave Lyons of System Sensor, Pierre Trapanese of Northland Control Systems and Frank De Fina of Samsung.

De Fina said the industry continues to struggle to find qualified candidates, even though jobs in this industry pay well and offer advancement opportunity.

In addition, De Fina said there’s a “tremendous lack to diversity in the security industry” and said one of the reason organizers chose Mercer County Community College for this program is because it “draws a higher-than-normal percentage of African Americans, Hispanics and women. We need to expose these people to our business,” De Fina said. And this degree program is one way to do it.

SIA has signed a memorandum of understanding with Mercer and is in the process of recruiting industry professionals to teach courses at Mercer.

De Fina pointed out that high grades in the associates degree program at Mercer can lead to a bachelor’s degree. “If you go through the program with a 3.5 GPA or better, you’re assured spot in a four-year program at Rutgers [University],” De Fina said.

Both the scholarship and the degree program are smart moves for the security industry. Congratulations to SIA, ISC and the WSC.

SIA hire signals new focus for group

SIA will concentrate on regulatory affairs with new legislative director Jake Parker
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01/22/2014

WASHINGTON— In an appointment designed to bring about some shifts in the organization’s direction, the Security Industry Association has hired Jake Parker, a 12-year veteran of Capitol Hill, as its new government relations director, Don Erickson, CEO of SIA, told Security Systems News.

SIA applauds pending school safety initiative

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01/17/2014

SILVER SPRING, Md.—A school safety measure included in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2014 could help grow investment in school safety, according to the Security Industry Association.

Integrator opportunity with CFATS

SIA working on legislation to better manage CFATS performance guidelines, establish permanently authorized standards
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01/15/2014

WASHINGTON—Integrators could reap the benefits of a bill in the works that would improve how DHS manages a set of performance-based guidelines for high-risk chemical facilities, known as the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards or CFATS.

Boxer is SIA’s Legislator of the Year

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12/19/2013

SILVER SPRING, Md.—The Security Industry Association has named Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., its 2013 Legislator of the Year for “her tireless dedication to school safety,” according to a news release.

SIA, County Executives of America to share resources

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12/19/2013

SILVER SPRING, Md.—The Security Industry Association and the County Executives of America have signed a memorandum of understanding, pledging to share resources to bolster public safety and emergency management, according to a Dec. 18 announcement.

SIA’s new Hauhn Award honors collaboration

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11/25/2013

SILVER SPRING, Md.—The Security Industry Association announced the creation of a new award—the Jay Hauhn Excellence in Partnerships Award—in a Nov. 22 release.

SIA: DHS acquisitions process needs more ‘predictability’

CEO optimistic legislation will ‘pass the House in some form’
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11/20/2013

WASHINGTON—The Security Industry Association has drafted a bill that would provide security integrators who contract with the Department of Homeland Security a more comprehensive and long-term picture of what DHS agencies need, Don Erickson, CEO of SIA, told Security Systems News.

Security and the shutdown

Erickson: Continuing resolution is best outcome for security industry; SIA working to mitigate effect of shutdown on integrators
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10/21/2013

WASHINGTON—There’s no doubt that the government shutdown has affected the security industry, and the best outcome at this juncture would be a long-term continuing resolution, Don Erickson, CEO of the Security Industry Association told Security Director News.

Security and the shutdown

Erickson: Continuing resolution is best outcome for security industry; SIA working to mitigate effect of shutdown on integrators
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10/11/2013

WASHINGTON—There’s no doubt that the government shutdown has affected the security industry and the best outcome at this juncture would be a long-term continuing resolution, Don Erickson, CEO of the Security Industry Association told Security Systems News. 

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