Ben Brown’s contributions to the security field have had a significant impact in advancing the value of several security programs and enhancing the security posture of various organizations. Through his knowledge in specialized security management domains, Brown has been able to act as a change agent in large organizations, bringing resolution to complex security challenges by generating new frameworks.
In his current role as the Senior Special Security Operations Manager for the Security Center of Excellence within Microsoft’s Cloud Operations & Innovation division, Brown specializes in managing physical security initiatives to support various special projects and ultra-high security datacenters. His expertise includes developing security policy and procedure, emergency planning and generating other security risk products.
He explains, “At Microsoft, I oversee the delivery of physical security programs within a portfolio of high-security specialized datacenters. My primary duties include providing management over a contracted guard force and overseeing the development and maintenance of all program policies and governance. Much of my day-to-day consists of providing consultation and project management between a variety of security stakeholders within our organization and amongst our customers. Security disciplines that I have responsibilities within include industrial security and federal compliance, emergency planning, risk assessment, construction security, site operations, investigations and security supplier contract management.”
Previously, Brown served as a Contractor Program Security Officer for The Boeing Company, where he managed operational security programs and designed physical security systems and facilities in adherence to U.S. National Industrial Security Program and intelligence community standards.
Before his role at Boeing, he managed physical security programs at Amazon Web Services, overseeing various unique special programs, data centers and laboratories, as well as developing multiple holistic security programs to safeguard customer data and proprietary experimental corporate assets. He also spent several years at the Bill & Melinda Gates Investment firm, leading security operations programs, including performing risk assessments, managing an enterprise security technology program, overseeing guarding operations and developing a security governance model from the ground up.
Before his career in the private sector, Brown served in the U.S. Air Force Reserve and U.S. Navy for more than 12 years, managing a variety of programs, including force protection, acoustic intelligence analysis, occupational safety and industrial maintenance administration. He says, “Though not recent in my career, the one initiative I am most proud of is from my time in the U.S. Navy where I took ownership of an extensive workplace occupational health and safety program. Under my stewardship, I was able to revamp the safety training framework, appoint over a dozen representatives, mitigate various deficiencies and achieve exceptional scores on several organization-wide compliance inspections.”
Brown recommends future security professionals continuously seek opportunities to enhance the profession and to assist peers. He says, “Receiving advice and best practices from others has been vital to my success and my ability to solve problems. I am continuously encountering challenges at work that were resolved with assistance from my many friends and colleagues across the world within my network. My advice is to take the time to foster [professional] relationships and find ways to help others with unique challenges in the field, and to use these opportunities to learn new disciplines within our industry.”
Through his membership in several ASIS International groups, Brown has extensively sought volunteer opportunities to advance the security discipline. Specifically, he has served on the Physical Security, Young Professionals and Defense & Intelligence councils as well as the Critical Infrastructure Working Group. In his role as a Defense & Intelligence council member, he was directly involved in advancing the public-private relationship of security and engaging colleagues in promoting industrial security governance, including the National Industrial Security Program Operating Manual development.
He is currently involved in an industry partner group with the Critical Technology Protection directorate of the Defense Counterintelligence & Security Agency, working with defense industry partners to enhance policy.
Moreover, he has held local security leadership roles as a former chapter chair, board member and current committee chair of the ASIS Puget Sound chapter. His interests in advancing the security body of knowledge include membership on the committees engaged in developing the ASIS Enterprise Security Risk Management guideline, Physical Asset Protection standard, and Associate Protection Professional (APP) board certification.
Though he considers himself lucky to have been involved in a variety of exciting projects to develop and advance security doctrine, many of these opportunities arose as a result of befriending professionals who were active in volunteer initiatives. Brown says, “I am regularly looking to join them in future projects such as item writing for certification exams and contributing to new standards and guidelines. These opportunities have not only enabled my growth as a professional but have also introduced me to amazing friends and colleagues around the world.”
In addition to holding a Bachelor of Arts degree in Security Management from the American Public University System, Brown is nearing completion of a Master of Arts in Business & Organizational Security Management from Webster University. He holds various other professional certifications, including the ASIS International Certified Protection Professional certification.
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