For outsiders, perhaps one of the more underappreciated aspects of the security industry is its philanthropy; however, for those of us who have served this industry, it doesn’t take long to see its strong commitment to helping others. Every year in SD&I, we use the December issue to honor the vast number of security dealer and integrator firms – from large global integrators to small regional alarm dealers – who give back to their communities. This year, we received more submissions for this annual article than in its short four-year history; in fact, to include every act by every security firm who submitted is simply impossible (the word count was 15,000 – that is 30-plus pages of good works).
This year, many of your peers in the security industry took action to help those in desperate need who lived in the affected areas of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Many more security firms dedicate huge amounts of time and care to help their communities and others.
This article is perhaps the most important one that SD&I prints on a yearly basis. Why? Because it is easily our most interactive article – and it spurs action. Case in point: I ran into a colleague earlier this year who runs a very successful integration firm. When he noticed me from across the room, he came right up to me and apologized. I asked him why, and he said: “We didn’t have anything to submit for Security Gives Back this year…that will never happen again. We are starting a company-wide program to make sure our employees have a chance to make a difference in their community.”
After writing this article for several years now (access the others in our December issue archives at www.secdealer.com), it only made sense for me to get in on the act of giving. Thankfully, Mission 500 makes that easy in the security industry. In 2017, for the first time I walked in the Security 2K at ISC West and raised a significant amount for children in need. That is an event I will never miss again. I also helped pack school care packages for kids in Seattle during the recent Axis event. Additionally, SD&I was the “center field sponsor” at the 3rd Annual Security Softball Game, which in total raised $47,000 to support various programs across the United States to help children living in poverty.
Of course, what SD&I did pales in comparison to the giving back of our dealers and integrators. Here is just a small slice of all the good our industry does (and be sure to consult the end of this article for instructions on how to participate next year).
Security Dealers and Integrators Give Back
A.C. Daughtry (ACD), Montville N.J., donated more than $15,000 to mountain biking programs in New Jersey, along with 400-plus volunteer hours during 2017. Recipients included the New Jersey Interscholastic Cycling League (NJICL), the Hudson to Highland Mountain Bike Race Series (H2H), two bicycle races and two local cycling teams. ACD promotes healthy and active lifestyle for their employees, and by sharing their love for the sport of cycling, it is their goal to foster a life‐long love of cycling in the youth and adults of New Jersey.
ADS Security of Nashville continued its tradition of charitable giving with a number of events. For the third year in a row, ADS held a companywide food drive across all 22 branches to collect needed non-perishable food items to be donated in the local communities we serve. That equated to 4,618 items of food to help feed families across the southeast and provide relief for those impacted by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Other activities included a bottled water drive in Myrtle Beach; a Habitat for Humanity build in Clarksville, Tenn.; a chili cook-off at its Nashville Headquarters to benefit human trafficking survivors; and the angel tree program.
ADT Security Services’ Always Cares community engagement program includes local branch events, along with its “Week of Service” and “Season of Service” events. The Week of Service was held July 22-29 and included more than 3,000 hours of service donated to organizations around North America, including Ronald McDonald Houses, park cleanups, food banks, build sites, and back to school initiatives – to name just a few. Season of Service is held between Thanksgiving and Christmas, ADT encourages its locations to help their communities through a food drive, or volunteer time to help those less fortunate.
Advanced Cabling, North Little Rock, Ark., sponsored a room at the new Ronald McDonald house in Little Rock, which “provides a home-away-from-home that serves and sustains families of children being treated at area hospitals and supports community programs that serve the needs of children.” The company’s Northwest Arkansas office helped frame a house for Habitat for Humanity. They dropped what they were doing when they received a call from the organization telling them that a crew dropped out last minute and they needed help in order to stay on schedule.
Advantech Inc., Annapolis, Md., participated in multiple local fundraising and community service initiatives, the largest for the Delaware Police Chiefs’ Foundation, a nonprofit organization pledged to increase public awareness, police involvement and support to many groups. Advantech plays a major role in the coordination of sponsorships for their two annual fundraisers. Additionally, a company team participates and raises money for the American Cancer Society Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk/Run; and it has begun a relationship with The Murphey School, a transitional program which offers independent living services for children who have issues with dependency and/or neglect.
Alarm Detection Systems (ADS), Aurora, Ill., supported 25 causes, either via donations or a supply of volunteers. In January, 60 volunteers packed meals for Feed My Starving Children, and ADS contributed to Honor Flight, which recognizes Chicagoland’s WWII and Korean War Veterans by flying them all-expense-paid to Washington, D.C. for a day of honor, remembrance and celebration. ADS collected roughly 100 suitcases in 48 hours to donate to a hotel in the area that was temporarily sheltering hurricane Harvey and Irma victims. ADS’s western branch, Safe Systems, collected 2,600 pounds of food and fundraised for Community Food Share, and made financial donations to 13 charitable organizations, focusing on homelessness, medical needs, hunger and food insecurity, underserved youth, and education. Employees volunteered 55 hours working in the local food bank and accumulated 2,586 pounds of donated food which is equivalent to 7,851 meals. The team participated in a shoe drive where employees gave 62 pairs of shoes for Soles4Souls which helped finance the distribution of new shoes to people in our community living in poverty.
American Digital Security, Liberty, Mo., recently donated $1,500 for four veterans to play in the Patriot Benefit golf tournament. “Typically I would have put a team together, but I wanted to treat four of our finest soldiers to play,” says company president Buddy Mason. “This is dear to my heart because my wife served 25 years in the U.S. Air Force, so I know the sacrifices the soldiers and the families make.” Team Fidelis, an organization that works with PTSD veterans, helped Mason fill the team.
Aronson Security Group, Renton, Wash., encourages employees to choose a charitable organization for donations that the company will match dollar for dollar up to $250. The company supported the Red Cross after Hurricane Harvey. “At ASG we have a culture of caring,” says Margaret Soularie, VP of Human Resources. Other organizations supported by company volunteers and donations included: Dad’s (www.aboutdads.org), whose mission is to model healthy relationships as a means of creating healthier fathers and families; Seattle Children’s Hospital; Legacy Health, a nonprofit, locally owned healthcare organization in Portland, Ore.; and Northwest Harvest, a nonprofit food bank distributor in Washington.
Brady Integrated Security, Greensboro, N.C., was active this year working with Habitat for Humanity. 40 Brady associates spent time volunteering to build two houses – one in Greensboro and one in Raleigh.
Cam-Dex Security Corp. of Kansas City, Kan., hosted the Kansas City (KS) Police Department this past summer, with the Chief of Police, his deputy and a number of officers having lunch with employees. This was an opportunity for Cam-Dex to say thank you for everything they do for the community. The company also sponsored the St. Louis ASIS Golf Tournament, with all proceeds going to the Major Case Squad of Greater St. Louis.
Comcast’s Xfinity Home contributed nearly $20 million as a company to relief efforts for Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Separately and to celebrate its milestone of providing home security to more than one million homes, the company partnered with SPIN, a local Philadelphia-based nonprofit that helps individuals with autism. Working with SPIN, they identified three young men who have been friends since childhood and live together independently in a home. Comcast donated Xfinity Home security and home automation services and devices.
Convergint Technologies serves and gives to local communities all year, but especially on its yearly Convergint Social Responsibility Day, when the company shuts down operations for a full work day in order to allow colleagues to go into their communities and contribute to those in need. The impact from the 16th annual Convergint Social Responsibility Day is still being felt at the more than 64 local charitable organizations where employees volunteered. Teams installed cameras and security systems, landscaped, planted gardens, filled potholes, served food, sorted clothes, operated Bobcats and augers, painted, stocked shelves, poured concrete, built homes, installed fences, cleaned, moved furniture, cleared brush, split wood – and much more. In all, 2,345 Convergint colleagues, family and friends volunteered.
Custom Alarm, Rochester, Minn., participated in a city-wide effort to help make Rochester “A Litter Bit Better” – starting out the day with a company lunch and then hitting the trails for the rest of the afternoon to collect as much garbage as possible. Company volunteers teamed with other local businesses to help collect more than 18,400 pounds of litter.
DGA Security Systems, New York, raised more than $9,500 for Operation Backpack, an organization that distributes new backpacks filled with school supplies to homeless children throughout New York City. In addition, the company donated $3,000 to Toys for Tots. DGA also participates in the Christo Rey New York High School Corporate Work Study Program (CWSP). A student works at DGA one day a week and is given the opportunity to gain valuable work experience while DGA pays one half of the tuition to attend this excellent college preparatory school, with the other half paid for by the Archdiocese of New York.
DynaFire, Casselberry, Fla.: Along with the company’s annual support of Allie's Hope, the Christian Sharing Center, Burn Camps, and several local youth programs, DynaFire sponsored a Habitat For Humanity home for a family of six. Additionally, multiple employees spearheaded an initiative to support hurricane aid and relief efforts in both Houston and Puerto Rico.
Electric Guard Dog, Columbia, S.C.: The company and its employees donated $4,400 to relief efforts for Hurricane Harvey, most of which was spent at Costco to help fill local tractor trailers that were headed to Houston, with the remainder donated to the American Red Cross. Two weeks later when Florida was hit by Hurricane Irma, EGD and employees contributed another $3,200 which was donated to Samaritans Purse.
Electronix Systems Central Station Alarms Inc., Huntington Station, N.Y., continued its annual sponsorship of the St. Anthony’s Family Feast and Festival, an event to help raise money for the local church, St. Anthony of Padua and the Knights of Columbus. For the past 19 years, owner Fred Leonardo has chaired and sponsored the five-day festival. More than half of the company’s employees volunteer at the event, which helps raise on average $60,000 which go to charitable donations and activities.
First Alarm’s Richmond, Calif., branch office volunteered their time and provided refreshments for participants of the Northern California Law Enforcement Torch Run, which benefits Special Olympics Northern California. Volunteers included Shannon Beritzhoff (branch manager), Misty Jennings (contract administrator), Red Thorne (scheduler), and Bob Turnbeaugh (security consultant). The company also worked to support the Women’s Cancer Resource Center, a Berkeley non-profit that provides free services to women affected by cancer and their families. The WCRC’s executive director is a longtime First Alarm residential customer, and the center became a commercial customer to which the company has provided services at a discount.
First Response Security, Beaverton, Ore., employees spent time volunteering at the Oregon Food Bank by packaging frozen food, and at Habitat for Humanity by helping to build homes for families. The company also held a snack drive to support A Village for One, a non-profit working to end child sex trafficking and provide a safe place for children effected. Additionally, First Response donated and installed security systems for three individuals who are part of a domestic violence safety program and one war veteran. The company was also honored as part of the Portland Business Journal’s Corporate Philanthropy Awards.
GC&E Systems Group Inc., Atlanta, makes corporate donations, host events, and collect contributions throughout the year for a wide range of organizations from national non-profits to local food banks as part of its GC&E Gives Back program. “The GC&E Gives Back program embodies the core of our ideals and values by making a real difference in our local and customer communities and bringing together our employees in meaningful ways” explains Ed Ferrell, Senior Vice President. In 2017,the program supported Toys for Tots, food drives to help local families and shelters, the American Red Cross, American Heart Association, American Cancer Society, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and others. The company also collected and distributed basic necessities to the U.S. Virgin Islands following Hurricane Irma. As a Veteran Owned Small Business, GC&E supports the Wounded Warriors Project and supports a number of veteran organizations through the local Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association (AFCEA) chapter events and other charitable events.
Great Lakes Building Systems, Buffalo, N.Y., used the major portion of the money typically spent on an annual Christmas party to purchase and ship a large relief package to another alarm dealer in the Houston area following Hurricane Harvey. “After speaking to the president of the company in Houston, I learned the company had many families displaced from their homes with some in shelters and some losing much of what they owned,” explains Vice President William Blanchard. “There were children and infants as well as adults who needed everything, so we sent food, clothing, toys, baby needs, personal hygiene products and much more. I feel it is a tribute to our employees’ compassion and an example of just how close knit the fire and security industry is.”
Guardian Protection Services, Warrendale, Pa., opens the doors of its corporate headquarters every Valentine’s Day to serve up hospitality to individuals from NHS/Allegheny Valley School (AVS) who have intellectual and developmental disabilities. They bring Valentine’s Day goodies and handmade cards to thank Guardian employees for the hundreds of gifts they purchased for AVS residents during the past holiday season. “We call it our ‘Partners in Kindness’ event, because it is the return of one kindness for another – and it just doesn’t get any better than that,” says Communications Manager Mary Lynn Moriarity.
Holmes Security Systems, Fayetteville, N.C., partnered with Honeywell and Hikvision to provide a security system for “The Lodge” at Operation INASMUCH Men’s Shelter in Fayetteville, which provides meals and services “to meet the spiritual, physical, mental and emotional needs of the homeless and very low income.” The Lodge is a new transitional residence for homeless men to help visitors regain independence, while offering job training and job search assistance, a clean, secure place to live and daily meals. Since it opened in March, the Lodge – and its security and video surveillance systems – have been operating as planned. The surveillance system helps security personnel keep watch over the non-profit’s property and staff, along with the residents and their belongings. Footage from the surveillance system has already helped settle disputes and review incidents of concern. “Just the presence of the cameras alone has the effect of deterring crime. We make sure our visitors know the cameras are there,” said Ray Helton, executive director at the Lodge.
Integrated Protection Services (IPS), Cincinnati, Ohio, takes care of a large toy list each Christmas for a local charity, and last year added a partnership with a customer for employees to participate in their Angel Tree program to help kids with an incarcerated parent still have a good Christmas. The company also spearheaded a monetary donation drive for hurricane victims and to support the Red Cross.
Kastle Systems, Falls Church, Va., has been recognized as one of Greater Washington’s leading corporate supporters of area non-profits, ranked No. 11 on the Washington Business Journal Corporate Philanthropy list, as a result of monetary (more than $330,000) and hourly (990) contributions to charitable organizations and causes that include: SOME (So Others Might Eat), Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, National MS Society, American Red Cross, Capital Shield Citywide Surveillance program, and many others. As part of that effort, company volunteers worked in the SOME food kitchen, participated in the JDRF Games, donated blood to the American Red Cross and donated items to Toys for Tots.
Kimberlite Corp. (Sonitrol), Fresno, Calif., does many charitable events throughout the year, but one of its biggest is a combined effort with the Clovis Police Department, Sierra Vista Mall, Radio Station Q97, and Clovis Schools for a large backpack and school supply drive. This year saw volunteers hand out more than 1,000 backpacks with school supplies. “It is one of those annual events that reminds all of us what it means to be a part of our community,” says President/CEO Joey Rao-Russell.
KMT Systems, Atlanta, partnered with Atlanta Fest this year to help raise awareness for Kids Against Hunger (www.kidsagainsthunger.org), whose mission is to significantly reduce the number of hungry children in the U.S., and to feed starving children throughout the world. More than 30 KMT volunteers individually packaged enough food to feed 1,944 children in poverty-stricken countries. “What an experience to be a part of – not only did we have a great time, we changed the lives of the people we were packaging food for, and the minds of some of the KMT team that had never experienced something like that before,” says General Manager Bobby Wilbanks.
Lauttamus Communications & Security, Weirton, W.V., president Paul Lauttamus spearheaded a Mardi Gras gala event that raised more than $50,000 for the Weirton Medical Center’s state-of-the-art Breast Care Center. Lauttamus led the way by donating $10,000 toward the event. “We believe strongly in giving back to our community, and I am especially proud of all of the other sponsors and individuals who made this possible,” Lauttamus told a local newspaper.
LVC, Minneapolis, Minn., started its giving in January, when members of its sprinkler division donated time and materials building a rack stand out of pipe for a local winter carnival in the Twin Cities. Employees volunteered at many functions, including: Packing meals in three Feed My Starving Children locations; serving dinner at a Ronald McDonald House; and donating time and fire extinguishers to a local fundraising festival. The company also sponsored a Tee It Up for the Troops event this summer and a Big Brothers and Big Sisters fundraising event in Minneapolis. Employees suggest local causes or charities to feature in the company’s employee newsletter and encourage co-workers to join them in volunteering.
Micro Security, Miramar, Fla., has been a “Diamond Sponsor” for its local ASIS Chapter 104’s annual Broward County Law Enforcement Appreciation Banquet for the past five years. This year, Micro Security presented the Valor Award, given to a Broward County law enforcement officer who has exhibited extraordinary bravery and heroism relating to an imminent threat.
Midstate Security, Wyoming, Mich., employees raised more than $6,000 through 442 hours of volunteer work running concessions at various Van Andel Arena events, with all money raised going to Family Promise of Grand Rapids to fight homelessness. The money will help fund six families with shelter and basic needs like food, clothing and diapers. “Being homeless hits really close for me. When I was in between jobs previously I wasn’t sure where I’d live,” says Midstate employee Tara Ricket. “It has to be even scarier for families.” In addition to the money earned through concession sales, Midstate employees generated donations with in-office events like paying to wear shorts and flip flops to the office and product donations. “It is up to our employees to decide on the cause so that we are giving back to what is important to them,” adds Midstate president Dave Nemmers.
Modern Systems Inc., Lexington, Ky.: After the brutal murder of 70-year-old Carolyn New at the Activity Center of Denham Street Baptist Church in Somerset, Ky., Modern Systems – thanks to video surveillance footage of the killer walking by its headquarters facility – worked closely with police to assist the investigation. “A couple days after the murder, the very heartbroken Pastor Jeff Griffith reached out to me for ways to protect their church,” explains Modern Systems president M. David Morris. Modern Systems donated and installed a $20,000 state-of-the-art video surveillance system and helped to educate the church’s security team. “This was our way of showing this hurting Pastor and his church that we cared,” Morris says.
MONI Smart Security’s MONI 5K for Children run in October benefitted Mission 500, raising more than $36,000 to help children in need throughout North Texas as well as Houston area children affected by Hurricane Harvey. The day before the race, more than 600 backpacks were assembled for local students attending Farmers Branch Elementary School.
My Alarm Center of Newtown Square, Pa., sent more than 10 members of its executive group to participate in Covenant House’s Sleep Out: Executive Edition to raise awareness and funds in support of its mission to provide shelter and meals for homeless youth in America. The team spent a night out on the streets in solidarity with homeless kids – hearing their stories, and learning how they are making new lives for themselves at Covenant House. The team’s donation goal is $20,000.
NextGen Security of Exton, Pa., had some scary moments in 2017 with a major office in the Houston area. Thankfully, all NextGen employees made it through with minimal or no damage to their homes, and they raised $2,000 for hurricane recovery, including for the New Hope Church Hurricane Relief Fund and local United Way. Additionally, the company held a “day of service” with GoodWorks, a nonprofit dedicated to repairing homes for low-income homeowners in Chester County, Pa., where employees spent the day building a handicap ramp for a disabled mother. The company held another day of service, this time with LaMancha Animal Rescue, which included maintenance and organization at the shelter – making the area where the rescued animals live safe, clean and comfortable. The company also made donation to organizations including: A Walk to End Alzheimer’s; Disabled American Veterans; Lankenau Medical Center; Paoli Hospital Auxiliary; St. Jude Children’s Hospital; and others.
Northland Controls, Milpitas, Calif., continued its relationship with GRID Alternatives, and employees have helped to provided solar power to homes in low-income neighborhoods in the Bay Area. The company also initiated a relationship with the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) – combining Northland/GRID/AWF into an initiative to provide solar to remote schools on the periphery of national parks. A team of eight Northland techs flew to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to install solar at schools in the area (read more at www.northlandcontrols.com/blog-2/) .
Pasek Corp., South Boston, Mass., supports Toys for Tots through the local the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve. The company also actively supports the South Boston Community food pantry on an annual basis.
Per Mar Security Services, Davenport, Iowa, has a long-established tradition of giving monetary support to organizations that work to alleviate community problems and strengthen cultural and educational programs within the communities it operates. Chartered in 1980, Per Mar’s Charity Fund is an internal account funded completely by employees and matched dollar-for-dollar by the company. Employees are strongly encouraged to participate and those who are passionate about an organization may request the committee to consider a contribution. In 2017, the company raised more than $95,303 in charitable contributions. Three of the many volunteer events that employees participated in were: The Hand-in-Hand Chili Cook-Off; the Junior Achievement Bowl-a-Thon; and the American Heart Association Heart Walk, where 50 employees and their family members participated – triple from the previous year.
Prime Communications Inc., Elkhorn, Neb., began its involvement with the ALS Association in 2012 when CFO, Steve Nichols, was diagnosed with the disease. Over the last six years, Prime has participated in the ALS Walk, the Ice Bucket Challenge, grill outs, various raffles, and the Prime Golf Challenge Fundraiser – raising total of $84,859 within the last six years. The money goes towards research for new medications and ultimately to find a cure for ALS. Visit www.youtube.com/watch?v=mlS45v1RLVs&t=78s for more on the company’s efforts.
The Protection Bureau of Exton, Pa., awarded education scholarships to 10 children of company employees. This is the 13th year the Ladd family has provided this program. The Education Fund was established in 2005 by company owners Keith and Mary Ladd for the benefit of children of current employees who enroll in formal programs for post-high school education. Recipients are selected each June for the ensuing school year and the awards help to defray the costs of tuition and/or books. To date, 67 students have received scholarships totaling $67,000 over the past 13 years. This year’s recipients were: Tara Gassenmeyer, Adam Snyder, Rebecca Dwyer, Samantha Dwyer, Jonathan Trout, Alexander Trout, Sabrina Areizaga, Jeremy Appert, Alexis Carrington and Shauna Foley.
Pro-Vigil Inc., of San Antonio, Texas, donated and installed a surveillance system for the Montessori School of San Antonio with partners Axis, CSC and 2X. The company also came to the aid of a San Antonio Salvation Army location in a battle against break-ins and illegal dumping, and the scavengers who steal anything of value. Pro-Vigil’s Pete Ballard contacted the non-profit organization after seeing a report about the problem on the local news and offered to install monitored security cameras free of charge.
Red Hawk Fire & Security encourages action by its 40 district offices to identify and support charitable organizations at the local level. Members of the Red Hawk Team have donated hundreds of volunteer hours by way of food, toy and blood drives in addition to making direct cash donations to well-established local community outreach agencies assisting those impacted by hurricanes in Houston and Florida. The company matched employee donations up to a total of $25,000 to four organizations: Houston Food Bank, Houston Humane Society, Feeding South Florida and Volunteer Florida. Additionally, for the third year in a row, Red Hawk’s team in Orange, Conn., has adopted a family through the New Reach organization and will buy them Christmas gifts. The New Jersey Metro and the Tampa, Fla., Red Hawk teams are gathering new, unopened toys for their local Marine Toys for Tots campaigns. Members of Red Hawk’s Team in Stuart, Fla., are donating food to the Hibiscus Children’s Center and have raised money for Handlebars for the Holidays, providing bicycles, helmets and bike locks to needy children. The Red Hawk Team in Taunton, Mass., makes annual contributions of food and cash to support Our Daily Bread Soup Kitchen.
RFI, San Jose, Calif., participated in the Family Giving Tree’s Back-to-School Drive, the largest gift and backpack donation program in California. Employees donated $640 cash, 22 filled backpacks, and contributed time to fill backpacks at the FGT warehouse in preparation for kids going back to school. “There is nothing more fulfilling than making a difference to the children of our magnificent community,” says Dexter Capinpin, Senior Field Engineer.
Securadyne Systems of Dallas closed all locations this October for its third annual community service day, with each of its 18 locations volunteering at a local non-profit organization. They included: Habitat for Humanity (Dallas); Interfaith Food Shuttle (Raleigh); Stark Parks and Massillon Area Greenways (Canton); Matthew 25 Ministries (Cincinnati); Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy (Pittsburgh); Mass Audubon Society Wildlife Sanctuaries (Boston); and the Council on Aging of West Florida Inc. (Pensacola).
Securitas Electronic Security Inc. (SES) supported the Dallas Fallen Officer Foundation (DFOF) during the 2017 ASIS show in Dallas by raising funds and building public awareness for DFOF. Every year SES selects a charity to support at ASIS. The DFOF (www.dallasfof.org) is a police support organization, designed to assist the families of police officers killed or seriously injured in the line-of-duty. SES contributed $2 for each person who visited its ASIS booth – totaling $6,500.
Security 101’s 6th annual Gift of Security program provides $10,000 worth of integrated security services from Security 101 and equipment from product partner, Axis Communications, to one nonprofit organization at each of 13 participating Security 101 offices. Each office and a panel of local judges will identify three qualified community organizations with the system winner determined through an online voting process in December.
Silent Guard, Somerset, Ky., was a collection drop off point for the local Hurricane Harvey relief efforts. Several Silent Guard employees played a major role in the drive, and the day before the shipment was scheduled to arrive in Houston, President/CEO Dwight Sears flew down ahead of the drivers to coordinate the massive delivery efforts. For the second consecutive year, Sears served as the Kentucky Ambassador to International Pay it Forward Day, where he visited several elementary classrooms around the area talking and sharing how and why it is important to Pay it Forward. The company also donated money to a Silent Guard customer family moving to Guatemala as missionaries; partnered with U.S. Congressman Hal Rogers in providing scholarships to Kentucky high schoolers; sponsored several youth sporting teams and leagues; and volunteered for Project Graduations, which provides alcohol- and drug-free alternatives for graduating seniors.
Skynet Security of Chicago has established a link between its hotel clients (The Drake and Palmer House Chicago) and Catholic Charities, under which the hotels provide clothes from lost and found and the company delivers them to Catholic Charities for those in need. Additionally, the company sponsored a few golf events this year; helped with food drives and yearly raffles; and are silver sponsors for the Spirit of Saint Nicholas Ball in Chicago that benefits children's programs in the area.
Sonitrol Security of Delaware Valley honored law enforcement officers in January, hosting a luncheon at its Wilmington headquarters for area police officers, detectives and command staff as part of National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day. “Especially in these challenging times, it is important to pause and salute the men and women who fearlessly serve our communities and citizens,” says owner Joe Allen.
Southeastern Security Professionals (SSP), Norcross, Ga., employees rolled up their sleeves to participate in one of Habitat for Humanity’s outstanding volunteer programs, “A Brush With Kindness.” The September event saw SSP employees assist in home repairs for local homeowners who were not otherwise able to perform them, including clean-up, plumbing, electrical and carpentry work. “We invest in community as a way to give back and show our gratitude to the communities that enrich our lives in so many ways. We consider it an honor and privilege,” says David English, SSP co-founder and sales manager. In addition, SSP employees sent food and support to Hurricane Irma victims.
STANLEY Security partnered with Mountain States Health Alliance to benefit a major pediatric and general wellness initiative throughout Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia. The company was the premier sponsor of the 2017 Niswonger Children’s Hospital Classic, an annual fundraiser consisting of several community events and a golf tournament. In addition to sponsoring the Classic, STANLEY collaborated with Mountain States on several other general wellness initiatives, including early literacy and childhood physical fitness programs.
Supreme Security Systems, Union, N.J., reports that its fourth annual Holiday Food Drive has collected nearly 600 pounds of food donations so far – all to benefit the Community FoodBank of New Jersey and The Interfaith Food Pantry, which provides supplemental and emergency food to those in need who live in Morris County, New Jersey.
Surveillance Systems Inc. (SSI), Rocklin, Calif.: Since co-founding the Allegiant Giving organization in 2011, SSI President and Allegiant Board Member Todd Flowers continues to give back to veterans and local youth in the greater Sacramento region. This year is no different, with Allegiant Giving working closely with long-time customer Black Oak Casino in Tuolumne County to give a deserving veteran an Action Track Chair, a motorized vehicle that can literally get them anywhere. Allegiant giving was involved in gifting 11 Action Track Chairs, most notably the Menlo Park VA Spinal Care Program. In addition, Allegiant Giving created a Scholarship program for young leaders in the greater Sacramento community and distributed more than $6,000 to deserving students from Rocklin, Roseville, Whitney, Lincoln and Oakmont High Schools.
Synergy Florida hosted a collection drive for supplies to assist Feeding Tampa Bay with their Hurricane Irma relief efforts in South Florida. Synergy employees collected nearly 500 pounds of donation items, including canned food, blankets and cases of water.
Tech Systems Inc. of Duluth, Ga., allocates 16 hours per month of “Personal Enrichment Time” for employees to participate in an event that has personal meaning to them. Some of the events the company has contributed to on behalf of employees include: Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Water for Good, United Way, YMCA, No Shave November, Special Olympics, Habitat for Humanity, Mission trips and many charity golf tournaments. Employees recently donated more than 2,000 hours of PTO time to two of their coworkers in Puerto Rico until they could return to a normal work schedule.
Universal Atlantic Systems (UAS) of Paoli, Pa., hosted a back to school drive in August where the company and employees donated backpacks and school supplies. Other charitable efforts included: A raffle where 50 percent of what was collected was donated to the local fire company; a donation to the American Heart Association; and UAS continued its ongoing partnership with the Ronald McDonald house, raising enough money to sponsor a room at the Philadelphia House for a full year and hosting a breakfast at the Ronald McDonald house. UAS also partnered with Family Support Services to provide holiday gifts for more than 150 children.
Vector Security Inc., Warrendale, Pa., held six major charitable functions in 2017, including: Managers and senior executives from Vector Security constructed travel-version wheelchairs for donation to the Keystone Chapter of the Paralyzed Veterans of America; A $5,000 donation to a community fire department in recognition of fire safety month; Employee volunteers shopped for coats, boots, hats, gloves and scarves for boys and girls to support Project Bundle Up with The Salvation Army of Western PA; the HEROES Inc. Golf Fundraiser to benefit the families of local law enforcement officers and firefighters who made the ultimate sacrifice; Youngstown branch employees participated in the Panerathon Breast Cancer Run/Walk; and the Columbus branch presented a check for $1,262 from employee and company contributions to Nellie's Champions for Kids (NC4K), benefitting pediatric cancer patients.
Vision Technologies Inc., Glen Burnie, Md., senior vice president of sales and marketing Al Saxon says that “each day, we make it our business to get involved and give back to the communities we serve.” Vision employees worked with organizations such as the American Heart Association, March of Dimes, Mercy Health Corporate Partners Program, Helping Heroes Operation Second Chance, United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation, United Way, Believe in Tomorrow Foundation, Maryland Red Cross, Montgomery College Scholarship Foundation, and the George Washington University Student Athlete Foundation. Additionally, Vision provided furniture, support and fundraising to rebuild the New Fellowship Community Church in Baltimore after a fire.
Vivint Smart Home teamed with Feed My Starving Children, and more than 1,100 Vivint Smart Home volunteers packed 311,040 meals – enough to provide roughly 852 children in need with one warm meal per day for a full year.
Editor’s Note: To submit your company’s charitable and community efforts for next year’s Security Gives Back section, simply email me at [email protected] with details and photos at any time over the course of 2018.