Magazine article Security Management

Groups Cater to Special Interests

Magazine article Security Management

Groups Cater to Special Interests

Article excerpt

Throughout its 50-year history, the ASIS International Annual Seminar and Exhibits has become a focal point for security professionals with a plethora of interests. Many groups representing the ASIS leadership plan meetings in conjunction with the event. This year, the ASIS Board of Directors, the Professional Certification Board, and the ASIS Foundation Board of Trustees all met in Dallas, as did many ASIS councils and chapter and regional officers.

Numerous exhibitors scheduled meetings for their employees and clients, and corporate security departments brought staff together from distant offices around the world. Members of the International Organization of Black Security Executives invited colleagues to join them for an evening of networking.

Carrying on another tradition, four security-related special interest groups held breakfasts for their constituents. Those who gathered included Christians in Security, Former Federal Bureau of Investigation Agents, National Association of Security Companies (NASCO), and current and former agents of the U.S. Secret Service.

Meeting and mixing. Klas Nilsson traveled over the North Pole, through Canada, and halfway around the world to attend the ASIS International 50th Annual Seminar and Exhibits. A 14-hour plane ride later, and a long way from his native Sweden, Nilsson was ready for some mingling, networking, and socializing at Sunday's First-Time Attendee and New Member Reception, which was directed by ASIS President Shirley Pierini, CPP.

The program featured speeches by Pierini, ASIS Treasurer Jeff Spivey, CPP, PSP, and ASIS Executive Director Michael Stack. In her welcome, Pierini told the audience to "be involved and start your networking." Although Pierini is the 49th ASIS president, she explained that this year begins the Society's 50th Anniversary celebration, telling the new members that they were lucky to share in this tribute during the first years of membership.

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Although the event served as an official welcome by ASIS dignitaries, it was also designed as a networking opportunity. Spivey encouraged all new members to "get out of your comfort zone and introduce yourself to each other." He also gave a few tips to novice participants: "Remember to collect cards and shake hands."

That's exactly what Andre Edison from St. Louis and Pat Puda from Charlotte, North Carolina did. The pair met on their hotel shuttle and decided to attend the reception and following mixer together. Edison, a police officer and first-time seminar participant, was looking forward to education sessions, especially those featuring physical security and terrorism. …

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