Certification Profile: John C. Villines, CPP, PCI, PSP
For John C. Villines, CPP, PCI, PSP, the most rewarding aspect of practicing security management is making a difference for both his employees and his clients. “The employees benefit by developing the skills and knowledge that will enable them to pursue a viable career,” he says, and clients benefit “by having their assets protected and risks reduced or eliminated.”
Director of a consultancy that he founded in 1979, the same year he joined ASIS International, Villines oversees the operation of all federal government and private sector contracts and participates in the firm’s seminars and consulting assignments. While as many as seven independent Contractors may report to him at any point, he strongly believes in collaboration. “This is a two-way street,” he says. “While the buck stops with me, I think it’s accurate to say that I report to each of them and to each of the clients we serve.”
Villines started his security career in 1973 as a security patrol officer and advanced through the ranks at an upscale shopping center in Atlanta, Georgia, leaving in 1985 as director of security operations. He moved on to become operations manager for a firm overseeing two shopping centers, with responsibility for both security and facilities management, before deciding to concentrate on his own contract security services and private investigations firm.
Along the way, Villines received undergraduate degrees and attended law school. While an undergraduate, he interned with the Georgia Police Academy and developed its first Crime Prevention Specialist training program for personnel in law enforcement agencies and private entities. In 2008 he completed a master’s degree in security management.
Villines serves on the six-person Georgia Board of Private Detective and Security Agencies, one of the two members from the security industry. Villines was appointed by two successive governors to this board, and he has chaired it for nearly half of the 13 years he has served on the board. This appointment moved him to pursue his first ASIS board certification.
“I believed it was important that the person at the helm of regulating the industry in Georgia should demonstrate competency in security management,” he says, and “the CPP designation is the most widely recognized and respected symbol of that competency.” He became a Certified Protection Professional© (CPP) in 2003, the year he was first appointed to the state board, and earned the Professional Certified Investigator© (PCI) and Physical Security Professional© PSP certifications in 2015.
Villines asserts that his ASIS membership has provided “tremendous resources” through the years in his efforts to keep pace with the ever-changing aspects of the security management field. His certifications “provide clients and potential clients with immediate assurance that I have demonstrated competency in the skills and knowledge relevant to meeting their needs,” he says.
While he recommends ASIS certifications to clients and in seminars as a way to enhance one’s professional career, he offers this advice: “Study, study, STUDY…and speak with your colleagues.”
Villines has put this advice to work in his own family. His son, Joshua Villines, is also an ASIS triple certificant, earning the three designations between 2013 and 2016. A security professional himself, Joshua Villines, CPP, PCI, PSP, will be profiled in the February 2017 issue of Security Management.