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Forever Young

Forever Young

It’s website takeover time!

For some reason, I had an 80s flashback when I started to write this blog on the “40 under 40” takeover happening this afternoon on With visions of “Forever Young” dancing in my head (yes, I had a hard time choosing between the Alphaville song from the early 80s or the Rod Stewart hit from the latter part of the decade), we continue to honor the outstanding young professionals who are making their mark in the security industry. And deservedly so.

Celebrating our “40 under 40” award winners chosen by their peers has now become a time-honored tradition here at Security Systems News. In fact, we have handed out these awards for more than 10 years now, and we intend to recognize these outstanding security professionals for decades to come!

Why, you may ask? My answer is simply this – Why not? When you read the “40 under 40” profiles that we feature in every issue of Security Systems News, you immediately get a sense that each winner enjoys what they do day-in, day-out, especially when it comes to taking care of their customers.

Just read what one of our award winners, Kathryn Schultz, Marketing and Sales Coordinator, United Central Control, said when it comes to delivering top-notch customer service.

“I began my career as a dispatcher on graveyard shift and I found that I was inspired to help people,” Schultz said. “Being able to be a part of a team that provides security and peace of mind for homes and businesses, while also helping dealers grow their business and succeed continues to be a major source of my inspiration and job satisfaction.”

Another “40 under 40” winner, April Chastain, Director of Operations, Owen Security Solutions, is a prime example of someone who worked her way up from customer service representative to her current role by developing a passion for the security industry.

“I enjoy talking to and helping people, so it seemed like a good opportunity,” said Chastain on how she started with Owen. “I started learning about the security industry and became really intrigued and passionate about the life-saving aspects, along with the cool technology.”

Other “40 under 40” winners like Daniel Clark, Senior Account Manager, Rapid Response Monitoring, knew very early on that he wanted to pursue a career in security. His father ran his own security company out of the basement of their home in New Jersey.

“From a very young age I always expressed interest in learning about security systems and the technology he was working with back then,” he said. “While I was studying Finance and Marketing at the University of Vermont, I had the opportunity to work for a close family friend who also owned his own local alarm company. I worked with him every summer first starting as a helper and quickly developing into a seasoned technician.

“After graduating in the midst of a struggling economy in 2008, I continued working as a sales technician for his company for an additional two years until I was able to pursue a career in Finance. While I enjoyed the day to day of working in Midtown Manhattan, my experience and passion for the security industry brought me back four years later. My experience from working as a technician, along with my father’s background, helped tremendously with building me into the sales professional I am today.”  

As you can see from these examples, it doesn’t matter what path our “40 under 40” winners chose to pursue their security careers. These diverse and talented young professionals have had such a profound influence on their co-workers, their companies, and I’ll even go so far to say the industry as a whole, that they were nominated by their colleagues as a “40 under 40” winner.

And as we honor our young security brethren (yes, I consider myself young as I turn 50 next month) each year, how can the industry continue to recruit such outstanding talent to follow a path to a rewarding career in security?

Another of our “40 under 40” honorees, Master Sgt. Daniel Simpson, Cyber Operations and Planning Superintendent, U.S. Air Force, may have said it best. “Members want to feel that they as an employee and their contributions are valued as part of the team,” he explained. “They want to be heard and have a voice in this industry to push it and their organizations to new levels. This is where organizations and its leaders need to embrace the experiences and talent that members bring to the table and capitalize on the passions people have.”

Not a bad idea at all, Master Sgt. Simpson.

To learn more about our “40 under 40” Class of 2020, please visit our website and click on the 40 Under 40 tab. And don’t forget, we’ll be announcing the Class of 2021 winners later this year and profiling each outstanding young security professional in subsequent issues of SSN.

It never gets old to highlight our young. As Rod Stewart lyrically stated (sorry, Alphaville), “You will remain forever young.”


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