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‘20 under 40’ winner: From staff quizzes to high-tech installations

Jason Stone, 38, director of security, Collegiate School, Richmond, Va

RICHMOND, Va.—The 335 staff members at Collegiate School, a private K-12 institution with more than 1,600 students here, receive an email from Jason Stone every two weeks.

It’s a quiz, based on security and emergency procedures he has set up.

ASIS 2013: My first day

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

CHICAGO­—3VR, Cisco, Avigilon, Verint, March Networks, FLIR, Mobotix, Guardian 8 and more! Those were among the booth visits I made Tuesday at the 59th Annual ASIS International Seminar and Exhibits here.

Common themes among those I met with were making security cameras better and having them do more for actionable, business intelligence for a bigger ROI and taking the potential for human error out of the equation.

For example, 3VR’s Masa Karahashi, senior VP, engineering , and Cisco’s senior marketing manager Lindsay Hiebert and product manager Jenifer Piccioni told me about their products’ ability to troubleshoot, manage huge numbers of cameras and provide valuable “un-siloed”  data.

FLIR’s Mark Kline, business development manager for critical infrastructure in the western U.S., Latin America and Canada, talked about adaptive command through the company’s Cameleon and told me to look more into Skywatch, its manned mobile surveillance tower.

Avigilon was showing off its new Light Catcher, designed for hotels, restaurants, bars and other places that use low lighting. The cameras can capture colors in a way that others can’t in darkness or low light, said Ian Povey, director of product management and product marketing. Knowing if someone who just took a wallet from someone’s purse at a bar was wearing a red or blue shirt can be a big plus, he said. Avigilon had a very effective demo at its booth.

Verint end-users Rudy Wolter, director of North American security and investigative services for Citigroup, and Eric Biernatt, manager of public safety, physical and tech security for the Medical College of Wisconsin, talked about their success with Verint’s products across the verticals.

I also spoke with a Guardian 8 end user who is beginning to deploy the G8 ProV2, enhanced nonlethal device at his sites. (The end user did not want to be named as of yet, but he is from a nationwide company.) The deviceå provides a layered defense as an alternative to force from up to 50 feet away, including laser spotter, siren, strobe light, O.C. pepper spray, camera with voice and video auto-record functionality, push-to-talk communications capabilities, the company said.

It’s always nice to put faces to people I often talk with via telephone, so I stopped by the American Military University booth to meet in person my good source, Jeffrey Hawkins, manager of strategic initiatives for the private security sector.

I topped off the day with an excellent dinner hosted by Morse Watchmans at the Girl and the Goat restaurant (highly recommend!). There I had the opportunity to chat with colleagues in the security trade pub biz.

As an aside, I took a hilarious ride back from the show with nine strangers. It was a long route so I had the chance to get to know Tyler Sweatt from Toffler Associates, who served three years in Afghanistan. Great guy. We at Security Director News thank him for his service!

Now, it’s time for Day 2. Another busy day ahead. Stay tuned.



Heading out for ISC West!

Friday, April 5, 2013

I've been finalizing my schedule for ISC West in Las Vegas next week. I've got my work cut out for me, but it's a great lineup.

I'll be meeting with representatives and end users from, among others, March Networks, Tyco, Inovonics, Mobotix, Microsoft, Delta Scientific, Lumidigm, Interlogix, Ingersoll Rand, BRS, Quantum Secure and Cisco. Not to mention meeting up with some folks from SIA, PSIA and the Security Executive Council.

I'll be tweeting and blogging throughout the week, so, please, stay tuned.  

It'll be my first time at the show, and if I learned anything from the ASIS show in Philadelphia last fall it is to wear comfortable shoes. Actually, I learned a lot more than that because I flew in on my fifth day on the job, but the shoe thing stands out.  

If you're headed to Vegas, too, don't forget to come to the Security Director News/Security Systems News "meet the editor's event" at 9 a.m. on Wednesday. We'll be at the media stage, right outside the main entrance to the show floor. I would truly enjoy meeting my readers and hearing what's on their security-industry minds!

Bergen County upgrades security

700 surveillance cameras in place

HACKENSACK, N.J.—The Bergen County Sheriff's Office has completed the installation of 425 new surveillance cameras in county facilities, bringing its total to 700.

Cisco invests in VidSys


VIENNA, Va.–VidSys, a major PSIM provider based here, announced today it has closed a recent round of funding that includes Cisco.

Harrah's signs 10-year agreement with Cisco

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

I spoke with Cisco yesterday about their big news — a 10-year strategic agreement with Harrah's Operating Co. As you may well know, Harrah's is the largest provider of branded casino entertainment (its flagship is Caesar's Palace in Vegas. Also, one of the favorite places to shop in Sin City.)

I talked with Steve Collen, director of business development for Cisco's physical security business unit, and he said it is quite unusual to see a long-term agreement like this, even in the halls of Cisco.
The company will be providing Harrah's with and IT infrastructure to support digital signage capabilities and its very cool Telepresence system. I had the opportunity to use the solution when I visited Cisco's headquarters last year and it is really like being in a room with the person who is on the video screen.
In addition, 31 Harrah's properties will be migrating over to digital security and surveillance products from Cisco. The hope is that this project will expand to Harrah's approximately 50 casino locations.

Check out this presentation about the project.

Shake ups

Friday, January 25, 2008
There's been some management shake-ups within Cisco's physical security business. Here are the details:

Hirsch Electronics yesterday announced that Robert Beliles, co-founder of Cisco's physical security initiative and business unit, has been appointed vice president, enterprise business development. Beliles brings to Hirsch more than 11 years of product marketing and product management experience with Cisco. He is also the co-author of several networked physical security system patents-pending.

“The opportunities and benefits of networked physical security are enormous", observed Mr. Beliles. "I was very impressed by Hirsch's early leadership in adopting technologies, such as XML and encrypted end-point communications, which demonstrates that Hirsch is at the forefront of this next wave of convergence. As a result, customers not only benefit from products from a proven security vendor, they also enjoy the ability to build security systems with advanced technologies today."

Agent Vi last week announced the appointment of Mark Kolar to the newly created position of vice president, channels for the Americas. He will build, lead and direct the company’s channel partner efforts and related programs in North, Central and South America.

Kolar joins Agent Vi from Cisco Systems where he served as director of physical security for worldwide channels. While at Cisco, Kolar founded and initially developed Cisco’s physical security go-to-market and acquisition strategies, and most recently designed, launched, and enhanced Cisco’s worldwide physical security reseller and channel program. His efforts included the implementation of processes to control and scale the deployment of Cisco's physical security solutions as well as the management of several large systems integrator relationships. Kolar brings 23 years of technology, business and networked physical security experience to Agent Vi.

There's obviously been a lot of talk about IT companies moving into the physical security space (IBM, EMC, Microsoft) but Cisco seems to have been the leader in this pack since its purchase of BroadWare last year. I wonder what this management shake-up means for the company's initiative in this space. Bob and Mark certainly have a lot of experience beneath their belts and I'm sure its a shame to lose that. But Cisco does still have Bill Stuntz, the former leader of BroadWare, helming the ship over there.

Anyone have any thoughts? How any of you been working with Cisco on any projects? How about installations — any out there?