The Winter Olympics – Eight Years Later
During the month of February 2010 the Vancouver Winter Olympics held in Canada took center stage in the media. As I see NBC’s effort in this monumental broadcasting feat it reminds me of the time that I assisted in security for NBC and other public and private entities during the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics in 2002.
In February of 2002 I was hired to provide uniformed & plain clothed, armed & unarmed private security services during the 2002 Salt Lake City (SLC) Olympic Winter Games. While I was away for 30 days my wife, Kimberley, ran our California based private security & investigative business, Delta Protective Services.
I arrived in SLC on January 28th, about a week before the Olympics were to begin. This week prior to the beginning of the Olympics was spent receiving mandated State of Utah security and firearm training and performing advance work on our assigned jobsites. I also worked with our team to help determine the best way to organized and deploy our team of approximately 50 uniformed and plain clothed private security personnel.
The first assignment that I worked on was for the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) where we deployed about 28 of our personnel. This team provided armed security at critical facilities and infrastructure in the SLC area. During this assignment we worked in conjunction with the SLCPD, Utah Highway Patrol & FBI under the direction of the Secret Service. The UDOT detail was one of the largest deployments we had and provided much satisfaction for a job well done. This detail accounted for about 85% of the time that I spent in SLC.
Another of our assignments was for some of the downtown hotels. I got an opportunity to work at the Hilton & the Grand America. I also worked a detail for MacDonald’s Restaurants but my favorite assignment was working the NBC detail within the Grand America hotel. The hours were grueling but the job was rewarding.
During the course of my thirty-plus days providing security at the SLC Winter Olympics that year I was only able to take two days off, the first of which was only after working twenty straight 12-hours shifts on the UDOT detail. During one of my days off I had the privilege to attend an Olympic Medal awards ceremony at the down town Olympic village venue. The other day I took sight-seeing around the beautiful SLC area.
My coworkers were an absolutely top-notch team of security professionals. Most were, like myself, graduates of Executive Security International and had received the best training available. This coupled with their extensive experience in domestic and international security & protection made for an outstanding working environment. The people of SLC were great hosts and the volunteer spirit of the community was unmatched. This is such a beautiful city. I was often awestruck at the sights around me, especially the stark contrast of a big American city at the base of the magnificent Rocky Mountains in the depths of winter.
The learning opportunities for anyone working this event were phenomenal. The lessons learned on a daily basis and the relationships made here last a lifetime. I am grateful for my involvement in this historic event and am proud that, although held in a post 9/11 American, there were no significant security related incidents. This was certainly do to the “Not on MY watch” attitude of myself and the rest of the people providing security and protective services during this historic event.
Your next event may not be the Olympics but if you want an “Olympic” level of service and protection at your next event please contact me or any of the professionals at Delta Protective Services. We look forward to the opportunity to serve you.