Skip to Content

Women in Security Feature: Rose “Liz” Bacus, IST

Women in Security Feature: Rose “Liz” Bacus, IST SSN and SIA highlighting the contributions of women in security all year long

Women in Security Feature: Rose “Liz” Bacus, IST, Inc.

HAWAII—Having worked close to a decade on engineering systems aboard U.S. Navy ships (half as active duty U.S. Navy and half as a civilian), Rose “Liz” Bacus said she was looking for something new and exciting to learn about and work on.

“However, I also wanted to remain in a high-paced, high-volume throughput-type industry with an opportunity to continue serving those who serve us – the military,” she explained. “The electronic security systems industry was the perfect fit for what I was looking for.”

In her current role as FedGov Project Engineer at Integrated Security Technologies, Inc., a systems integrator based in Hawaii, Bacus designs electronic security systems and project manages federal government jobs.

Bacus said that while she feels fortunate to be working for a company “whose company culture fosters and promotes diversity and inclusivity,” she understands that is not always the case in an industry that has historically not been that diverse.

“I am painfully aware that this isn’t what comes standard, and that we still have a way to go to truly reflect the diversity of the world around us,” she explained. “I take it one step at a time – constantly learning, improving, and leading by example so that others can see the value of having people like me in their team. I try to contribute in my own little way, to the goal of promoting diversity and inclusivity, by being conscientious in choosing the companies and people for whom I work.”

Bacus said the work that the Security Industry Association (SIA) and others are doing to provide diversity and inclusion is vitally important.

“Featuring women and highlighting the many ways we add value and contribute to the advancement in the industry allows for the proliferation of visibility and representation in an environment that is still very much male-dominated,” she said. “Industry giants such as Security Systems News and SIA underscoring the value of inclusivity and diversity could very well help translate to a promotion or being considered for new role for someone who was overlooked due to not being part of the ‘old boys’ club.”

In terms of role models who have helped her out along the way, Bacus said, “I would like to give a special shout out to my bosses and colleagues in Integrated Security Technologies whom have taught me so much – particularly my mentor, Richard Arguelles. Richard, who has 20-plus years of industry knowledge and experience under his belt, and the rest of the IST team have helped my professional development immensely. I am nothing without my team.”

Bacus also shared her thoughts on the industry moving forward, from both from a diversity perspective and a technology and business perspective during these unpredictable times.

“Research and development teams and test groups need to include women, Black, Indigenous, and people of color in their ranks in order to make advancements in technologies like facial recognition cameras, elevated skin temperature cameras, and biometric authentication to not only be more accurate, but also have their functionality be ethical.”

While the global pandemic has added new challenges to working in this industry, Bacus said, “It has truly been impressive watching companies adapt and adjust their workflow and processes in order to remain functional and lucrative during these unprecedented times.”

For others just starting out in the industry, Bacus said Is it important to constantly aim for personal and professional development. “Obtain the licenses, certifications, and/or formal education needed to thrive in the industry – it’s worth it and highly lucrative,” she noted. “If you’re the first, don’t be the last; always find time to mentor and train others when you can. Always seek others’ mentorship and training – especially those who are veterans in the field. Last but not least: have a blast!

Note: This profile is part of an ongoing SSN Women in Security series done in partnership with Security Industry Association (SIA) Women in Security Forum (WISF) that includes monthly features on leaders within the industry.


To comment on this post, please log in to your account or set up an account now.