As an engineer in the U.S. Army, Jeffrey A. Slotnick worked to ensure the physical security of military installations and various hazardous materials. When the time came for him to pivot his career path in 1999, a role in security management seemed like the logical next step.
He founded Setracon Inc., a security consulting firm, at the very onset of his new career. On the advice of a CPP-certified colleague, he joined ASIS International that same year—becoming involved in the Society’s Olympic Mountain Chapter in Tacoma, Washington.
The network of peers Slotnick has enjoyed as an ASIS member has been an invaluable asset as he tackles the wide range of problems clients present in his consulting projects. “I don’t need to know everything myself,” he adds. “Because of my involvement with ASIS International, I know someone who knows what I need.”
Excited by the benefits of engaging with ASIS members, he has dived deep into volunteer roles. In 2005, he served as chapter chair for the Olympic Mountain Chapter. He then progressed into regional leadership, and since 2016 has served as senior regional vice president (SRVP) for ASIS regions and chapters in the western United States. He has served on the Security Services Council, Law Enforcement Liaison Council, Cultural Properties Council, and now the Physical Security Council—of which he is a former chair. He is also currently a member of the ASIS Commission on Standards and Guidelines.
He turned to ASIS board certifications to elevate his professional standing in the security world. He was among the first to earn the Physical Security Professional (PSP®) certification when it was introduced in 2003, and he attained the Certified Protection Professional (CPP®) certification in 2010. “There is worldwide recognition for the CPP and PSP,” he explains. “When potential clients see my certifications, they are immediately assured of my level of competency and commitment to my profession.
“In my business relationships and as an SRVP, I have had the opportunity to coach, mentor, and teach many young and mid-career professionals,” he says. “One of my first questions for them is, ‘Are you certified?’ Certification is a significant part of a budding security professional’s career development.”
He recommends a rigorous preparation regimen before sitting to take a certification exam. “Once you’ve identified the certification that best meets your professional needs, contact people who have recently become certified to understand their journey,” he suggests. “Gather the study materials and commit to reading them, paying attention to the domains of knowledge for each certification. Attend chapter or regional study groups, if available. Once you are confident in your competency and have studied your weaker areas, then it’s time to schedule your exam.”
Slotnick forecasts a bright future for security management professionals. “We are a leading-edge industry with significant growth anticipated over the next 10 years,” he says. “This growth is supported by improved integrated technologies, analytics, and acceptance of security management as a significant enabler and contributor to the enterprise. It’s an exciting time to pursue a security career.”