Longtime law enforcement professional Gawain Guedry has joined Total Recall Corporation as a Senior Account Executive representing the Western Region of the United States. Based in Las Vegas, Guedry brings invaluable field experience to Total Recall a Convergint Technologies company.
Tell us about your professional background.
I served the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD) for more than 25 years–working various assignments as a patrol officer, detective, and a commercial helicopter pilot and instructor–before achieving the ranks of patrol sergeant, detective sergeant, administrative lieutenant, detective lieutenant, and section commander. During my work with LVMPD, I received a Master of Public Administration degree from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and completed Northwestern University’s School of Police Staff and Command.
While I spent a portion of my law enforcement career working undercover assignments and flying helicopters, I realized my passion for technology after I assumed management of my department’s technical and surveillance section.
Why did you join Total Recall Corporation and Convergint Technologies?
The first part of my career was spent in law enforcement, as that was my desired profession since I was a young child. For the last seven years of my policing career, I was fortunate to have been part of an incredible team of “technical” law enforcement professionals. We had many responsibilities related to electronic surveillance and technical solutions; however, what brought me the most sense of accomplishment was our team’s role in designing and installing a citywide surveillance system for our city. After retiring, it did not take long for me to realize just how much I missed helping our community and serving others.
I researched opportunities in the private industry and quickly identified Total Recall Corporation and Convergint Technologies as leaders in public safety-based video surveillance solutions.
What is your role at Total Recall and Convergint?
I serve multiple communities at once by helping law enforcement and municipal leaders understand the ways public safety technology can improve quality of life for residents and tourists. Having experience in the operational deployment of technologies in the municipal and law enforcement space, I hope to leverage some of my knowledge when interacting with these leaders in discussing the capabilities of Total Recall’s products and Convergint’s services.
What are citywide safety solutions?
Citywide safety solutions are the people, processes, and technology that view and leverage live & recorded outdoor video images and analytics to make real-time decisions on actions and solve crimes. The technology includes three major components: video data collection at the street level, video transmission network, and video management software and servers.
As an example, our CrimeEye® RD-2 is a solution that provides enormous value in its ability to satisfy elements of crime, disorder, and public safety-related objectives in an easy-to-deploy fashion and with minimal time to install. There is a significant return on investment for customers based on the capabilities of this particular solution – and I can speak from experience on how that is realized.
What is your experience with video surveillance solutions for cities and governments?
I am fortunate to have first-hand experience in what it takes to successfully deploy video surveillance solutions within a municipality. While working for a law enforcement agency, my team was tasked with learning how to deploy surveillance technology within the city in which our agency had a geographical responsibility. Early on, we decided to take a slow and methodical approach to the learning and technology deployment process. We sought the assistance of local academic partners; we developed surveys to understand the needs of our residents, business owners, and area-based first responders. We conducted meetings with governmental and non-governmental leaders, and we talked to other municipalities who had deployed similar solutions. Through this process, we gained a true understanding of what it meant to work together towards the shared goal of improving the quality of life for everyone who resided within and visited, our community.
In addition, we learned that video surveillance solutions do make a difference when deployed in a manner consistent with the needs of a community. I was privileged to have talked directly with citizens and business owners who recognized the positive changes that occurred in their neighborhoods as a result of the public safety cameras we installed. I listened to them praise the increased safety aspects as a result of the technology and ask for additional equipment so that other neighbors would also realize the benefits they achieved.
What needs do law enforcement, cities, and governments have that differ from, for example, a regular commercial business?
A significant differentiator between government and business centers is the need for tax revenue as a primary funding source. Government leaders who had budgetary responsibilities during the economic downturn of 2008 and 2009 garnered an immediate and long-lasting education on the need to maximize value on capital and smaller line-item expenditures. Having been in a management position with budgetary responsibilities during that time, I needed reliable and well-designed technological solutions so that I would not have to worry about replacing equipment before the life expectancy was achieved. Had my team and I not planned and this occurred, it would likely have resulted in a negative impact on other budgetary mandates, potentially reducing or eliminating our ability to meet other needs.
The Total Recall team understands the budgetary constraints facing governmental leaders. My colleagues have been dedicated to developing solutions that are built to last and engineered to provide results that can enhance the capabilities of an organization’s human capital. Maximizing the value of every single tax dollar is critical to government leaders today, and at Total Recall we have solutions designed to meet those expectations.
WHAT DO YOU THINK ARE SOME OF THE BIGGEST CHALLENGES FACED BY CITIES AS IT RELATES TO SECURITY?
One of the biggest challenges facing many cities, in terms of security, is a difficulty in achieving appropriate officer-to-citizen ratios. For various reasons, many police departments are operating at less-than-optimal staffing levels, which can affect their ability to do more than just respond to calls for service. In my experience, public safety is always enhanced when police personnel and citizens have opportunities to collaborate on solutions to improve quality of life.
Establishing such a technology partnership in which citizens and officers can work together is a great example of how community safety can be improved and citizen-officer relationships enhanced, even if cities are having difficulty appropriately staffing their police departments.
Do video surveillance systems for smaller cites differ from the needs of larger cities?
I do not believe video surveillance needs differ based on the size of a city. All geographies experience crime and disorder, and you can calculate the resulting effect based on population size. While the quantifiable impact is realized through real crime data, the qualifiable impact is achieved through the perception of safety by a community’s residents, business owners, and tourists.
Given this, a community member or visitor that feels unsafe in a small city is no different than one who feels unsafe in a large city. What matters is that governmental leaders identify technological solutions that are designed to last and meet their technical and financial objectives. It is also important they develop a strategic plan to remediate the concerns of those affected by the crime. The solutions can then be scaled based on need and financial capability. This should be the case regardless of a city’s size.
Total Recall’s CrimeEye® is a perfect solution for both small and large cities. Given the team’s experience with deploying citywide solutions across the country, and having recently been acquired by Convergint (the largest, privately-held system integrator in the world who is focused on being its customers’ best service provider), the possibilities are endless. Total Recall’s solutions can be deployed on a temporary, semi-permanent, and permanent basis and scaled to meet current and future objectives.
WHAT MAKES TOTAL RECALL AND CONVERGINT THE BEST CHOICE FOR THIS VERTICAL?
Total Recall and Convergint are perfectly aligned to help cities, municipalities, and law enforcement agencies design, implement, and maintain citywide safety solutions. Total Recall has been in business since 1985 and has been providing citywide solutions since 2004. They have a team of professionals well versed in designing and delivering the technology components that are necessary to ensure safety in any city. Their time in business alone demonstrates their commitment and desire to remain a long-term partner for any community.
Convergint Technologies, as the largest, privately held system integration organization in the world, is well positioned to provide the installation and maintenance components that are necessary to ensure short- and long-term success. Convergint was created on a set of values and beliefs and is a company dedicated to ensuring its employees achieve a balance of work, family, and community service – values and beliefs that align perfectly with the values to which public safety professionals swear an allegiance.
I hope the experiences from my law enforcement can provide some value to the leaders of cities and police departments who are hoping to garner an understanding of how citywide surveillance systems can help their communities.