By Heather Issvoran, Director, Strategic Communications, Center for Homeland Defense and Security, Naval Post Graduate School
Cops, soldiers, fire personnel, emergency managers, and other first responders run toward the danger.
The adrenaline filters through their body to save lives, property, and ideals that could cost them their lives, limbs, and mental health. Their daily work is to respond to the worst day in the lives of the citizens they serve.
The risks they take every time they go to work are an incredible responsibility and reward.
They risk everything to protect the lives and property of their community as well as the ideals of our nation.
I have always admired men and women who served a cause greater than themselves.
Like many after 9/11, the anger of the attacks engendered a need in me to do SOMETHING.
When a good friend told me about a job at a nearby Naval base, I was curious, and a bit intimidated.
I definitely wanted to apply. I am not a first responder.
However, when I learned that the job I was applying for was to serve those who were, I was incredibly proud to get the offer.
At the beginning of 2003, I was hired as an operations coordinator for the Center for Homeland Defense and Security (CHDS), a brand new center at the Naval Postgraduate School that offered the country’s first master’s degree in homeland security.
It was an exciting time.
In the shadow of all the death and destruction, our task was to create a cadre of first responders who could think critically about our domestic threats.
We were an answer to the 9/11 Commission Report’s criticism that the nation suffered from a “failure of imagination.”
Everyone at CHDS was passionate about working together to create policies and strategies to make our country safer.
CHDS is a place where we can test ideas that could be implemented faster because the people writing the policies were the ones who had the power to put them into action.
Our students are encouraged to be provocative, collaborative, and think beyond the day’s crisis.
(Learn More about the CHDS Program at NPS from Senior Consultant David O’Keeffe, Director of Strategic Communications Heather Hollingsworth Issvoran, Director of Executive Leaders Program Sara Kay, and FEMA International Relations Specialist Dayra Carvajal, as they discuss the Master’s Degree, Executive Leaders, and Emergence programs, and provide some suggestions to make potential applicants as competitive as possible. Courtesy of Center for Homeland Defense and Security, Naval Postgraduate School, and YouTube. Posted on Sep 23, 2022.)
It was ok to fail in our classroom in order to succeed in the real world.
After a few months as a coordinator, our director, Paul Stockton, looked at me one day and said, “I want you to be the face of CHDS!”
I was excited because I loved working with our students and helping them get through the program. It was gratifying to see them ascend leadership and get promoted.
Over time, I became the operations director. I felt the pull to help the students even more and left that position to develop our strategic communications department.
I traveled to every state in the country to work with the leadership of local, state, tribal, territorial, federal, and military agencies to convince them to send their best and brightest to CHDS.
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Republished with Permission by Preparedness Without Paranoia® and Parents With Preparedness Magazine
About the Author
For two decades, Heather Issvoran has been the bridge between federal, state, local, and tribal homeland security practitioners and officials with global thought leaders on resilience, homeland security, and emergency management.
Ms. Issvoran scours the country, ensuring the Center for Homeland Defense and Security (Center) enrolls the very best candidates for its executive and graduate programs. Her responsibilities include contract support for strategic communications, agency outreach, student and alumni relations, recruitment, and public affairs.
She supervises and coordinates Center communications on the national level for print, broadcast, and web-based media, working closely with both the Naval Postgraduate School and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security leadership on these endeavors.
Ms. Issvoran leads a strategic communications operation and department that shares, shapes, and demonstrates the impact and success stories of CHDS students, faculty, staff, and alumni and reaches out to a national audience of academics and practitioners.
(Learn How the Naval Postgraduate School Center for Homeland Defense and Security (CHDS) transforms how leaders look at the world, look at their jobs, and do their jobs. CHDS has been an innovative leader in homeland security and executive education since 2002. CHDS resources are utilized daily by hundreds of local, state, territorial, tribal, and federal agencies, the private sector, and academic institutions to accomplish their missions. The Center facilitates leaders in taking their ideas out of the classroom and into the real world, where they become new policies and strategies that better protect our communities and country. This video demonstrates why CHDS is the Nation’s Homeland Security Educator and a national resource. Courtesy of Center for Homeland Defense and Security Naval Postgraduate School and YouTube. Posted on Jun 15, 2021.)
In her previous position in contract support for the Center as the Director of Program Operations, Ms. Issvoran enhanced and streamlined program operations while working with government partners to accommodate additional programmatic goals. Ms. Issvoran provided logistical planning, coordination, and execution of the Center’s master’s degree programs, executive leaders programs, conferences, and workshops.
Before the Center, Ms. Issvoran worked as the Director of Human Resources for FamilyCare of Monterey Bay. In this position, she was responsible for human resources for 40 employees and five physicians. She also successfully helped lead the company through bankruptcy and corporate reorganization.
Ms. Issvoran has a background in the fields of education and marketing in addition to her operations experience. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication Studies from Westmont College in Santa Barbara, California.
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American Security Today’s Annual ‘ASTORS’ Awards is the preeminent U.S. Homeland Security Awards Program, and now entering its Seventh Year, recognizes industry leaders of Physical and Border Security, Cybersecurity, Emergency Preparedness – Management and Response, Law Enforcement, First Responders, as well as federal, state and municipal government agencies in the acknowledgment of their outstanding efforts to Keep our Nation Secure.
Excellence in Homeland Security
The Center for Homeland Defense and Security offers programs developed in partnership with and are sponsored by the National Preparedness Directorate of FEMA, focused on assisting current and emerging leaders in Homeland Defense and Security to develop the policies, strategies, programs, and organizational elements needed to defeat terrorism and prepare for and respond to natural disasters and public safety threats across the United States.
Through CHDS graduate and executive-level coursework, seminars, and research, homeland security leaders gain the analytic and critical thinking skills and substantive expertise they need to create innovative solutions that address the threats facing the nation and local communities.
(See how CHDS resources are utilized daily by hundreds of local, state, territorial, tribal, and federal agencies, the private sector, and academic institutions to accomplish their missions. The Center facilitates leaders in taking their ideas out of the classroom and into the real world where they become new policies and strategies that better protect our communities and country. Courtesy of CHDS and YouTube.)
American Security Today’s Annual ‘ASTORS’ Awards is the preeminent U.S. Homeland Security Awards Program, and now in its Seventh Year, recognizes industry leaders of Physical and Border Security, Cybersecurity, Emergency Preparedness – Management and Response, Law Enforcement, First Responders, as well as federal, state and municipal government agencies in the acknowledgment of their outstanding efforts to Keep our Nation Secure.
Homeland Security remains at the forefront of our national conversation as we experience an immigration crisis along our southern border, and crime rates that are dramatically higher than before the Pandemic across the United States.
These challenges have become a national priority with an influx of investments in innovative new technologies and systems.
The pinnacle of the Annual ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program is the Annual ‘ASTORS’ Awards Presentation Luncheon, an exclusive, affordable, gourmet, full-course plated meal event, in the heart of New York City, held at the International Security Conference & Exposition (ISC East) since it’s inception in 2017.
And who better to address the aforementioned challenges, and initiatives to meet today’s threat landscape than Deputy Executive Assistant Commissioner (DEAC) Diane J. Sabatino of the Office of Field Operations, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the opening keynote speaker at the much-anticipated 2022 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Presentation Luncheon, on Wednesday, November 16th, 2022.
As the DEAC of the Office of Field Operations, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Mrs. Sabatino leads more than 31,000 employees and oversees an annual operating budget of $6.5 billion.
(Hear a recent interview with Deputy Executive Assistant Commissioner (DEAC) Diane J. Sabatino held at Identity Week Europe on leveraging biometric comparison technology in U.S. air, maritime, and land border environments for the security of passengers, enhancing the customer experience and limiting the transmission of biological pathogens while respecting personal privacies and educating the public as the CBP further expands the implementation of biometrics to keep up with threats to the aviation and other border sectors. These new technological tools are there to automate administrative functions so that the most valuable component of the process, the officers, are able to focus on critical issues as they arise. Courtesy of evie kim sing and YouTube. Posted on Jul 13, 2022.)
Enter, American Security Today, the #1 publication and media platform in the Government Security and Homeland Security fields with a circulation of over 75,000 readers and many tens of thousands more visiting our AST Website at www.americansecuritytoday.com each month.
The continually evolving ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program will emphasize the trail of Accomplished Women in Leadership in 2022, as well as the Significance and Positive Impact of Advancing Diversity and Inclusion in our Next Generation of Government and Industry Leaders. #MentorshipMatters
So be on the lookout for Special Guests, Presenters, Book Opportunities, and Attendees at the 2022 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Presentation Luncheon in November of 2022 in NYC!
The United States forever changed on September 11th, 2001, and we were fortunate to have many of those who responded to those horrific tragedies join us at our 2021 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Presentation Luncheon.
In the days that followed 9/11, the critical need to protect our country catapulted us into new and innovative ways to secure our homeland – which is how many of the agencies and enterprise organizations that are today ‘ASTORS’ Awards Champions, came into being.
Our 2021 keynote speaker featured a moving and informative address from TSA Administrator and Vice-Admiral of the United States Coast Guard (Ret), David Pekoske; to our attendees who traveled from across the United States and abroad, on the strategic priorities of the 64,000-member TSA workforce in securing the transportation system, enabling safe, and in many cases, contactless travel.
Legendary Police Commissioner William Bratton of the New York Police Department, the Boston Police Department, and former Chief of the Los Angeles Police Department was also live at the event, meeting with attendees and signing copies of his latest work ‘The Profession: A Memoir of Community, Race, and the Arc of Policing in America,’ courtesy of the generosity of our 2021 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Premier Sponsors.
The 2022 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program is Proudly Sponsored by New PLATINUM SPONSOR: NEC National Security Systems (NSS),
New Premier Sponsors Rajant Corporation, guardDog AI, and IPVideo Corporation, and
Returning Premier Sponsors ATI Systems, Automatic Systems, RX Global, and SIMS Software!
In 2021 over 200 distinguished guests representing Federal, State, and Local Governments, and Industry Leading Corporate Firms gathered from across North America, Europe, and the Middle East to be honored among their peers in their respective fields, which included:
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA)
ICE Homeland Security Investigations (ICE HSI)
DHS Science & Technology (S&T)
The Metropolitan Police (MPD)
The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA)
The San Diego Harbor Police Foundation, and Many More!
ISC East is the Northeast’s leading security & public safety event, hosted in collaboration with premier sponsor Security Industry Association (SIA) and in partnership with ASIS NYC.
Each year, in order to keep our communities safe and secure, security dealers, installers, integrators, and consultants, along with corporate, government, and law enforcement/first responder practitioners, convene in New York City to network, learn and evaluate the latest technologies and solutions from premier exhibiting brands.
This combination of one-on-one conversations with top innovators, high-quality special events, and cutting-edge education and training, make ISC East the most comprehensive East Coast event to guide the industry in getting back to business.
Taking place November 15-17 at the Javits Center in NYC (SIA Education@ISC: November 15-17 | Exhibit Hall: November 16-17), ISC East will be co-locating again with the Natural Disaster & Emergency Management Expo (NDEM EXPO), a comprehensive trade event and online resource dedicated to the preparation, response, and recovery of physical and human assets of public and private organizations. Qualified professionals who register for ISC East will be granted access to both events.
Corporate firms, the majority of which return year to year to build upon their Legacy of Wins include:
AlertMedia, Allied Universal, AMAROK, ATI Systems, Attivo Networks, Axis Communications, Automatic Systems of America, BriefCam, Canon U.S.A., Fortior Solutions, guardDog.ai, Hanwha Techwin of America, HID Global, Mark43, IPVideo Corporation, Konica Minolta Business Solutions, Lumina Analytics, NEC National Security Systems, NICE Public Safety, OnSolve, PureTech Systems, Quantum Corporation, Rave Mobile Safety, Regroup Mass Notification, Robotic Assistance Devices, Rajant Corporation, SafeLogic, Senstar Corporation, ShotSpotter, Singlewire Software, SolarWinds Worldwide, Teledyne FLIR, Valor Systems, and Wiresecure, just to name a few!
Why American Security Today?
The traditional security marketplace has long been covered by a host of publications putting forward the old-school basics to what is Today – a fast-changing security landscape.
American Security Today is uniquely focused on the broader Homeland Security & Public Safety marketplace with over 75,000 readers at the Federal, State, and local levels of government as well as firms allied to the government.
American Security Today brings forward a fresh compelling look and read with our customized digital publications that hold readers’ eyes throughout the story with cutting-edge editorial that provides solutions to their challenges.
Harness the Power of the Web – with our 100% Mobile Friendly Publications
AST Digital Publications are distributed to over 75,000 qualified government and homeland security professionals, in federal, state, local, and private security sectors.
‘PROTECTING OUR NATION, ONE CITY AT A TIME’
AST Reaches both Private & Public Experts, essential to meeting these new challenges.
Today’s new generation of public safety and security experts need real-time knowledge to deal with domestic and international terrorism, lone wolf attacks, unprecedented urban violence, shifts in society, culture, and media bias – making it increasingly difficult for Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, First Responders, Military and Private Security Professionals to implement coordinated security measures to ensure national security and improve public safety.
These experts are from Government at the federal, state, and local levels as well as from private firms allied to the government.
AST provides a full plate of topics in our AST Monthly Magazine Editions, AST Website, and AST Daily News Alerts, covering 23 Vital Sectors such as Access Control, Perimeter Protection, Video Surveillance/Analytics, Airport Security, Border Security, CBRNE Detection, Border Security, Ports, Cybersecurity, Networking Security, Encryption, Law Enforcement, First Responders, Campus Security, Security Services, Corporate Facilities, and Emergency Response among others.
AST has Expanded readership into integral Critical Infrastructure audiences such as Protection of Nuclear Facilities, Water Plants & Dams, Bridges & Tunnels, and other potential targets of terrorism.
Other areas of concern include Transportation Hubs, Public Assemblies, Government Facilities, Sporting & Concert Stadiums, our Nation’s Schools & Universities, and Commercial Business Destinations – all enticing targets due to the large number of persons and resources clustered together.
(See just a few highlights of American Security Today’s 2021 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Presentation Luncheon at ISC East. Courtesy of My Pristine Images and Vimeo.)
To learn more about ‘ASTORS’ Homeland Security Award Winners solutions, please see the 2021 ‘ASTORS’ CHAMPIONS Edition Fully Interactive Magazine – the Best Products of 2021 ‘A Year in Review.’
The Annual CHAMPIONS edition includes a review of Annual ‘ASTORS’ Award Winning products and programs, highlighting key details on many of the winning firm’s products and services, including video interviews and more.
It serves as your Go-To Source throughout the year for ‘The Best of 2021 Products and Services‘ endorsed by American Security Today, and can satisfy your agency’s and/or organization’s most pressing Homeland Security and Public Safety needs.
From Physical Security (Access Control, Critical Infrastructure, Perimeter Protection, and Video Surveillance Cameras and Video Management Systems), to IT Security (Cybersecurity, Encryption, Data Storage, Anti-Malware, and Networking Security – Just to name a few), the 2021 ‘ASTORS’ CHAMPIONS EDITION has what you need to Detect, Delay, Respond to, and Mitigate today’s real-time threats in our constantly evolving security landscape.
It also includes featured guest editorial pieces from some of the security industry’s most respected leaders, and recognized firms in the 2021 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program.
For more information on All Things American Security Today, as well as the 2021 ‘ASTORS’ Awards Program, please contact Michael Madsen, AST Publisher at firstname.lastname@example.org.
AST strives to meet a 3 STAR trustworthiness rating, based on the following criteria:
- Provides named sources
- Reported by more than one notable outlet
- Includes supporting video, direct statements, or photos