Chuck Heiss is a former firefighter, police officer, and 5-time-elected sheriff who started working for STT back in July of this year.
From Washington D.C. to Missouri and all the way to Michigan: Chuck Heiss!
Tell me about yourself:
I was originally born and raised in Washington D.C., but I started my law enforcement career in Missouri. I started off as a police officer, and eventually I was elected as the Sheriff of Johnson County, MO. I was re-elected 5 times for that role. I also spent 27 years as a firefighter.
When did you begin working for STT?
I started in July of this year, 2019, so I’m still pretty new to the job.
What drew you to security work?
I have a military and police background, so I would say the similarities between the industries drew me into security work. I have had an interest in the industry ever since I was exposed to it in the military; I worked under a program for nuclear missile security, so I had a little bit of experience there. Eventually, I left the military to go into law enforcement which is where I served as a Police Officer and eventually Sheriff.
I came out of retirement to go into the security field, I felt it was a natural fit given my past work experiences. Between being a firefighter, a police officer, and a sheriff, I thought it was the right field to go into.
What do you like about working for STT?
I really like the people that I work with. There are other retired police officers that I get along with because we come from the same background. I think STT is a good fit for me because it’s a relaxed environment; coming from law enforcement, especially as a sheriff, the atmosphere can be anything but relaxed. Working closely with [former law enforcement officials] is just a natural fit for me, and it’s a good group of people to be around.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I would say that it’s probably interacting with all of the people I meet. We do security for three large facilities on campus and spend a great deal of time moving around them. Right now, we’re working to develop a security program that identifies which areas have potential for improvement. We’re conducting an intensive security assessment that should help us see which areas need changes or more frequent patrols. I like doing this because it provides employees and guests with a greater feeling of safety. We were hired to protect these people and their assets and doing what I can to make sure they’re safe provides for the greater good.
What does an average day of work look like?
I typically work 6am-2pm depending on what’s happening during that day. Sometimes, overtime is needed, so I’ll stay and work those hours to get whatever needs to be done finished.
I start my day by doing rounds around the facilities to make sure everything is squared away. [STT] is also responsible for access control to the site, so we’re the first people that employees and guests see when arriving. I’ll work the reception desk, use proprietary software to sign people in and out, inform guests of our policies and procedures, and escort them around the property to wherever they need to go.
During the course of the day, I could be tasked with conducting fire or sever weather drills, accompanying the safety team and different audit teams through their inspections, and highlighting and identifying areas of concern. Other people aren’t the only threat or danger that we deal with, they come in all shapes and sizes of varying levels, so it’s a team effort for sure to keep everyone safe from any danger.