New Year, New Opportunities

The start of a new year offers a wonderful opportunity to reflect on the past year and to set goals for the months ahead. I think you will agree that 2012 was an eventful year for our association. It started with Eduard Emde, CPP, the first non-U.S. president, taking the helm of ASIS and ended with record membership numbers, significant chapter growth, four new ANSI Standards and greater recognition of our board certifications. The cornerstone of all these successes has been the support and dedication of our members.

I am always amazed at the willingness of our members to give back—sharing generously of their time, expertise, and energy. The countless hours devoted to developing ASIS educational programs, white papers, publications including the Protection of Assets, standards and guidelines, our board certifications—the list goes on. All championed by volunteers. One of my goals in 2013 is to spotlight these member led initiatives in the hope that they inspire even more members to take that important first step toward a volunteer leader role.

There are many ways you can get involved. The little things we do within our own environment— presenting on a security subject at your local chapter meeting, taking on a volunteer role in your chapter, starting a certification study group, mentoring a young professional, or serving on a council or committee, can over the long term have a significant impact on our work to advance the profession and the role of security in our companies and communities.

The benefits are vast. Members who actively participate in our programs, social networking groups, councils, and chapters are well known by and get to know other members. They become immediate resources when a need arises for expertise, referral, or consultation. In addition, one of the most valuable dimensions of membership is the opportunity to take on a leadership role. This is the chance to gain free professional development—honing your business acumen, developing time management skills, and strengthening your leadership skills—while helping ASIS grow at the chapter, region, or global level. That experience, as enriching as any job, makes ASIS not only a source for information and knowledge but a destination for practical experience, too.

Equally rewarding are the relationships you will build through your volunteer service. The professional network I developed as a result of my active engagement in ASIS has been invaluable to my career and is something that cannot be replicated online or at any one-off conference or workshop.

If you are interested in getting more involved, I strongly encourage you to reach out to ASIS Membership or visit the ASIS website to learn about available volunteer opportunities. Let's be vocal and show the world what we have to offer. The year ahead will bring new challenges and opportunities. I look forward to meeting them with you.

My best wishes for a healthy and prosperous New Year.

Geoff Craighead, CPP
President, ASIS International