This week members of the OSAC leadership and RISC teams again found themselves on the road. They converged on Philadelphia together with thousands other security-focused professionals for the 58th Annual ASIS International Seminar. David Schnorbus, Executive Director; Peter Ford, Deputy-Executive Director; Anna Rapp, Jennifer Hardwick, and Jacqueline Schools of our RISC team – and I – greeted interested attendees who passed by our OSAC booth.
Leaving Moscow behind we shifted our focus to a venue of more imminent concern: London…the site of the 2012 Summer Olympic Games, officially the Games of the XXX Olympiad, which will take place here in just over two months on 27th of July to the 12th of August 2012. The OSAC London County Council is well-established and is prepped and already very much engaged in the Pre-Olympic planning.
In February of 2002, I made my way to Salt Lake City, the site of the XIX Winter Olympic Games, where as the Head of Security of one of the Corporate sponsors I had been invited by Mitt Romney to “lock shields” with him and Federal assets in protecting the Olympic games, the first since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. The lingering threat posture meant a higher level of security than ever before provided for the Games.
I can think of no more an appropriate way to cap our three-country survey of Asia than with the Pan-Asia Regional Council (PARC) meeting, graciously hosted by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation--nor any more appealing venue than their beautiful new, (extremely "green") offices located in the shadow of the "Space Needle" here in Seattle.
Korea is said by some to be more than 5,000 years old. It's in the heart of that antiquity that our delegation convened in Seoul where we continued a cyber-focused theme in our discussions of the particular security challenges faced here in Korea. While not my first time in this ancient country—the only nation in the world that yet remains divided—it is my first visit since having joined the ranks of the private sector.
Seven months after a 9.0 earthquake and devastating Tsunami hit Japan, claiming at least 15, 821 lives and causing what some estimate could exceed over $300 billion dollars in damages, the last of this year's joint Public/Private OSAC delegations arrived in Tokyo, the first of three key stops in Asia: Tokyo, Shanghai, and Seoul. As one makes their way from Narita International Airport, one sees no visible signs of any lingering effects of those horrific days (although I'm told that apparently the Tokyo Tower is still slightly bent). Most of those effects are yet being dealt with much further to the north.
We're here in beautiful Orlando, Florida, guests of ASIS at the ASIS International 57th Annual Seminar and Exhibits. Former Acting-Executive Director, Peter Ford, and OSAC analysts--Aiste Ray, Jennifer Hardwick--and I accepted a gracious invitation to attend this year's event and the opportunity to host an informational booth to educate the participants on OSAC and its services.