ADT Commercial’s Patricia Coureas Talks Diversity in Security, Much More
Coureas, a former FBI agent, now serves as a principal consultant in the Enterprise Security Risk Group at ADT Commercial.
SECURE Perspectives is a monthly column by the Security Industry Association (SIA) profiling women in the security industry. This column is part of SIA’s Women in Security Forum, an initiative to support the participation of women in the security field through programs, networking and professional growth events and thought leadership opportunities.
For this edition of SECURE Perspectives, SIA spoke with Patricia Coureas, principal consultant at ADT Commercial.
SIA: How did you get into the security industry?
Patricia Coureas: I spent 30 years as an FBI agent, gaining critical experience collecting and analyzing data, interviewing individuals and working numerous intelligence, violent crime and terrorist investigations. Later in my career, I served as an assistant legal attaché overseas and had opportunities to collaborate with both foreign officials in Greece and Cyprus as well as work closely with U.S. intelligence organizations in support of protecting U.S. persons and U.S.-owned businesses overseas.
As I thought about retiring from the FBI, I learned about a position for a senior security manager with the Coca-Cola Company. My FBI experience prompted me to apply for the role and enter the security realm, and this is where I continued to develop my strong passion for security and the ultimate goal to protect people at all costs. Some of my experiences included supporting the Rio 2016 Summer Olympics and developing a robust workplace violence prevention training module for the company’s overseas employees.
My current role as a principal consultant in the Enterprise Security Risk Group at ADT Commercial emanated from my personal connections with security leaders. I was instantly drawn to ADT Commercial after learning about the company’s capacity to provide commercial customers with the ability to identify and address risks with customized solutions, in addition to always focusing on the customer experience. It was just as important to know that I would be working with a team of people who shared my passion for a collaborative, inclusive culture promoting a high standard of ethics.
How does your organization serve the industry?
With over 145 years in business, ADT Commercial is one of the largest systems integrators that is 100% focused on commercial customers. With 150 commercial locations, three dedicated commercial and national account monitoring and operations centers and a team of dedicated leaders with extensive industry experience, ADT Commercial and our incredibly talented team of experts are empowered to make the right decisions to address all our customers’ needs. ADT Commercial also prioritizes employee development and encourages its people to create solid career paths that have been crucial in introducing new talent to the vast opportunities within security and promote positive, long-lasting change across the industry.
What is your current role?
As a consultant for the ADT Commercial Enterprise Security Risk Group, I help to build strategic relationships with our customers to fully understand their security challenges. By addressing security issues that threaten operations, consumer trust and shareholder confidence, I strive to provide asset protection by identifying vulnerabilities, strengthening incident management and crisis resolution and ensuring business continuity. I like to think of myself as someone who focuses on preparing companies for the unexpected.
What types of job functions do women fill in your company?
At ADT Commercial, our women leaders truly embody the meaning of our guiding principle, “Our People Are the Difference.” Women are present in a wide variety of job functions, including executive leadership positions, general manager roles, sales team members, technicians and more. Many of our company’s incredible accomplishments have been pioneered by our talented women leaders. ADT Commercial is fueled by their expertise and knowledge surrounding security, and we are proud to support their career aspirations and help them to succeed to the highest potential.
With more and more data that shows diversity makes a better workforce, what opportunities do you see for women in the security industry?
I think now more than ever, there’s an increasing drive for women to take on defining voices and leadership roles within the industry. With so many opportunities to benefit from education and critical knowledge, women are facing fewer and fewer barriers across the security industry and finding success and career fulfillment in security-based roles.
What impediments do you see for achieving this? What could remedy some of these impediments?
Simply put, knowledge is key. Organizations need to prioritize supporting women and all employees’ pursuits of expanding their understanding of the industry, valuable trends and the opportunities presented by rapidly evolving technologies. However, the drive to further develop skill sets, acquire that knowledge and be competitive across the industry has to start with the individual. There’s an incredible opportunity for women to create an impact across security – and in every way, education and ambition are critical in determining the depth of that impact.
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