For the past ten years, José Carlos Degiorgis, CPP, has been the senior regional manager, Corporate Security South America, with the pharmaceutical company Bristol-Myers Squibb. While his office is in Buenos Aires, Argentina, he reports to the company’s continental director in New York City.
Degiorgis began his security career years earlier in an administrative role with a small security company, also in Buenos Aires. He eventually became the general manager of that firm and began to specialize in executive protection.
Today, he leads a strong team across the region focused on “patient @ center” and product security, he says, with the goal of delivering quality medicines to patients as a priority.
Degiorgis obtained his Certified Protection Professional (CPP®) certification in 1998. He took the test that year in Dallas, Texas, the first year the test was available in Spanish. He is very proud to be one of just 14 to receive certification that year, although more than 300 participants sat for the test. For him, taking the test was exciting, and achieving his CPP “really helped me move forward in my career.”
Degiorgis was motivated to pursue the CPP by his belief that people in security need more professionalism and “need to grow in their security knowledge.” He also felt that the best way to help others move in those directions was by working inside ASIS International. He was involved in the first verification of the CPP exam in Spanish and he has continued to help monitor the questions on subsequent tests. As a testament to these commitments, Degiorgis joined the ASIS Professional Certification Board (PCB) in 2012.
In the ensuing years, Degiorgis has worked with various ASIS groups to produce seminars in several Latin American countries. He also worked on providing the Protection of Assets (POA) in Spanish, and Protección de Activos is now available in seven softcover volumes from ASIS. The Spanish translation is also available for purchase on Kindle at Amazon.com by individual volumes or as two separate Kindle books. “All of the obtained goals resulted from the hard work of strong volunteer leader teams,” he says.
Although he is finishing his term of office on the PCB this year, he remains committed to the certification process. In his view, the CPP certification sets a “red line” in a person’s security skill. “In my case,” he adds, “my bosses recognize me for that achievement, and that is very good.”
Degiorgis strongly encourages others to work on achieving at least one ASIS certification. But he also knows that certification is a process. “First of all,” he says, “study and study.” Passing the test takes more than the knowledge gained as a former military or police officer, he believes. The reward can be a satisfying security career, and he highly recommends that path to others:
“Hay mucho trabajo para hacer en Latinoamérica, debemos llegar a más y más profesionales en seguridad para darles los elementos necesarios para crecer.
“ASIS debe continuar esforzándose para dar a cada uno de sus miembros las herramientas necesarias para poder ser cada vez mejor ‘Security Professional’ que es uno de sus objetivos primarios. La Educación.”