At the Frontline: 2009 ASIS President Michael Cummings

Cummings discusses the future of ASIS and his security responsibilities at Aurora Health Care

I am very much a champion of guidelines and standards as well as the new CSO Roundtable. Admittedly I was one who needed to have the case made early on regarding standards as this was huge departure for ASIS, but I have come to embrace it fully. While we are doing the things listed under my fourth point above, we cannot lose sight of the fact that we need to make sure we serve all members in their educational and networking needs. This, after all, was our core mission. We will find new and better ways to do that (e.g., web-based and virtually), but we cannot abandon what got us to this point either. I also need to put in a plug for the applied research aspect of our profession. Through the ASIS Foundation we are going to be able to have an impact on the security body of knowledge here too. I don't want to sound pollyannish, but I am so proud of what ASIS does across the board that I could list everything.

The world of security is changing ever so rapidly, and the scope of what “security” means is broadening, as well. How do you keep a professional association like ASIS International relevant in this ever-changing security landscape?

I would argue that because of the factors you cite, it is the exact wrong time for security professionals to even consider abandoning ASIS. The complexity of our jobs and the demand to do more with less is why we need ASIS International more than ever. The vast number of resources as discussed above can only help us be more efficient, not less. Now is not the time to become an island. There is something for everyone in our profession under the umbrella.

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