At the Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG), the mission statement is “Giving the world a reason to cheer.” As a part of AEG, it’s STAPLES Center’s mission as well. In Los Angeles, California, STAPLES Center hosts more than 250 events every year, making it one of the busiest venues in the country. “The way the world and the economy is these days, people obviously have a choice as to where they’re going to spend their entertainment dollars, so we believe that they’re going to have an excellent experience and an excellent value at STAPLES Center,” says David Born, Senior Director of Security.  “In our department, it’s our goal to provide the highest level of safety and security for everyone that enters into our venue.”

With 24 years in the sports venue industry, Born enjoys the diversity his job brings. “Every day and every event is a little bit different,” he says. “We could have a sporting event one day and the next day, a concert. A few days later, we could have a family show. I learn something new almost every day, which is really rewarding to me.” Born also enjoys working with his team members. “I think we succeed by learning from each other. I work with an outstanding group of security professionals, from our front line staff to our management team. I believe our team is the best in the industry.”

In Born’s years in the sports industry, he has seen big changes in the types of incidents he needs to worry about. “When I first started, security was mainly there at an event to address incidents between fans,” he says. “While that is still the case, it has basically gone full-circle since then. Security is there for the safety and security of all guests, team members and players/performers from the time they set foot on your property to the time they leave at the end of the event. I find that keeping up-to-date on current events and risk is essential in our industry.”

Learning, keeping current with technology and what’s going on in the world, and maintaining relationships are key components to maintaining high levels of security, Born feels. “We are always looking for ways to continually do more, try new products and keep up with ever evolving technology to ensure the safety and security of our guests. Maintaining relationships with our colleagues, our venues, our law enforcement partners and so forth is essential to be successful in our industry,” he says.

Keeping up with both worldwide and local current events is one of Born’s central focuses. “Anything can affect our industry, not just something related to a public gathering,” he says. “We work closely with the Los Angeles Police Department for all of our events here, and we also maintain very close ties with the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI. When there’s an incident in your facility should not be the time that you’re actually introducing yourselves to these people. Already knowing them is essential to our operation.”

Born believes that security has to start at the top of an organization and be supported by it. “We’re very fortunate here at STAPLES Center and AEG because we place very high importance on security,” he says. “Safety and security is the most important aspect of our operation when people come to an event here because if someone did not feel safe, they would not want to come back.”

Working closely with different associations and committees helps Born’s security team keep a prominent position among peers. “I think we’re looked at as a trendsetter in the industry,” says Born. “Often when people from other venues come out this way, they want to come by the STAPLES Center. We’re really in the forefront of the industry.”

One of the challenges the team faces is inconsistent operations. “With such a diverse and a large number of team members working for an event, it’s essential that our policies and procedures are maintained in our operations,” Born says. “It’s important to look at continued training programs to support our continuity of operations. We also find that maintaining a very high standard in our security supervisors supports this.”

Because the security industry is so challenging, finding time for yourself is necessary, Born believes. “I like to spend time with my wife and my son,” he says. “Also, I do find time sometimes very early in the morning to go cycling, and I also practice yoga on a regular basis.”


Security Scorecard

Annual Revenue:  Confidential

Security Budget:   Confidential


Critical Issues

  • Terrorism/Lone Wolf

  • Insider Threat

  • Integration of Security Systems