NCS4 Recognition Awards

National Awards and Recognitions


Lifetime Achievement Award (NEW)

This award recognizes the long term accomplishments and contributions of an individual who has earned the respect and admiration of professional colleagues in the sport safety and security community. The award was developed to commemorate exemplary talents and contributions as demonstrated by the nominee’s dedication, loyalty, ability and integrity.

2017 Recipients:

Larry Buendorf, Chief Security Officer, United Stated Olympic Committee


Distinguished Leadership Award

This award recognizes a professional in the field who over the course of their career has constantly contributed to sport safety and security. To warrant this highest honor, the recipient’s service, commitment, ingenuity and integrity have elevated the profession to new levels. The award recipient is selected by a panel of subject matter experts on behalf of the National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security (NCS4) at the University of Southern Mississippi and given annually at the National Sports Safety and Security Conference & Exhibition.

2017 Recipients:

Russ Simons, Chief Listening Officer/Managing Partner, Venue Solutions Group


2016 Recipients:

-Jeff Miller, former SVP/Chief Security Officer, National Football League

2015 Recipients:

-Paul Denton, Chief of Police, The Ohio State University Police Division

-Paul Turner, Director of Event Operations and Security for the Dallas Cowboys and AT&T Stadium

2014 Recipients:

-Rick Fenton, Vice President of Corporate Security, Ilitch Holdings

2013 Recipients:

- Dennis Cunningham, Executive Vice President, Security; National Hockey League (NHL)

2012 Recipients:

- Dan Mullin, Senior VP, Department of Investigations - Major League Baseball (MLB)

2011 Recipients:

- Mike Rodriguez, Director of Security - United States Tennis Association (USTA)

2010 Recipients:

- Milt Ahlerich, Vice President for Security - National Football League

- Thad Cochran, United States Senator for Mississippi

- Bennie Thompson, Congressman Representing the 2nd District of Mississippi
  Ranking Democrat, Committee of Homeland Security

Professional of the Year Award

This award recognizes a member of management in the field that has, over the past year, demonstrated outstanding leadership in addressing safety/security issues. In addition to the enhanced safety and security of their venue, the recipient’s contributions have set an example for others to follow. The award is selected by each professional league, NCAA and NFHS presented annually by a league official at the National Sports Safety and Security Conference & Exhibition.

2017 Recipients:

Road Race / Endurance Events

John Bertsch, Executive Director of Global Safety & Security, IRONMAN World Championship

High School / After-School Events

Tom Gunnell, Chief Operations Officer, Katy Independent School District


Lawrence Rabalais, Jr., Chief of Police, LSU Police Department


Tim Christansan, Director of Security, Kroenke Sport Entertainment


Randy Olewinski, Security Director, Milwaukee Brewers


Vernon Conaway Jr., Vice President, Safety and Security, Maryland Stadium Authority

Previous Award Recipients

National Football League

Jim Mercurio, San Francisco 49ers, 2016
Lon Rosenberg, formerly of the Washington Redskins, 2015
Mark Briggs, Gillette Stadium, 2014
Matthew Bettenhausen - AEG World Wide, 2013
Danny DeLorenzi - MetLife Stadium, 2012

National Basketball Association

Scott Anderson, Pinnacle Venue Services, 2016
Brian Herbert, Quicken Loans Arena, 2015
Donald Paisant - Smoothie King Center, 2014
Robert “Bob” Hundevadt - AmericanAirlines Arena, 2013
Rosie Grace - Amway Center, 2012
Edward Boyens- Amway Center, 2012

Major League Baseball

Greg Terp, Miami Marlins, 2016
John Leas, San Diego Padres, 2015
Larry Bowman - Turner Field, 2014
Richard Fenton - Ilitch Holdings, 2013
Rob Matwick - Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, 2012

National Hockey League

Kim Boulet, MTS Center, 2016
David Born, Staples Center, 2015
Mark Brenner - First Niagara Center, 2014
Johnny Jackson - Joe Louis Arena, 2013
Clinton Peterson - PNC Arena, 2012


Jennifer Gant, Federal Bureau of Investigation, 2016
Jeff Steele, Auburn University, 2015
Mark Bodenschatz - Pennsylvania State University, 2014
Larry Naifeh - University of Oklahoma, 2013
Paul Denton - The Ohio State University, 2012

Major League Soccer

Brian Corrigan, DC United - RFK Stadium, 2015
James McFarland - BBVA Compass Stadium, 2014
Gina McFarlin - FC Dallas Stadium, 2013
David Dollase - Livestrong Sporting, 2012


Ed Klima - Dover International Speedway, 2014
Matt Brannock - Martinsville Speedway, 2013
Jim Hobbs - Michigan International Speedway, 2012


Ed Harris, Verizon INDYCAR Series, 2016

United States Tennis Association

Dick Clark - Lindner Family Tennis Center, 2012

National Federation of High School Associations

Jay Hackett, Milton Academy, 2016
Amy Skeens-Benton, Carmel Clay High School, 2015
Mike Gulino - Byram Hills Central School District, 2014
Thomas J. Gunnell - Katy Independent School District, 2013


Executive Event Services - Yorba Linda, California, 2013

Marathon / Endurance Events

Ted Metellus, Competitor Group, 2016
Mike Nishi, Chicago Marathon, 2015
Dave McGillivray - Boston Marathon,

Private Security

Salim Toorabally, Private Security, 2016

Industry Leader Under 40 Award

This award recognizes a young professional (under 40 years old) of the sports safety and security field that has, over the past year, demonstrated outstanding leadership in addressing safety/security issues. In addition to the enhanced safety and security of their venue, the recipient’s contributions have set an example for others to follow. The award is selected by each professional league, NCAA, NFHS and Marathon Committees presented annually by a league official at the National Sports Safety and Security Conference & Exhibition.

Eligibility: To be eligible, nominees have been born in 1977 or later, and work in the sports safety and security professional role.

2017 Recipients:

Road Race / Endurance Events

Charlotte Brookes, Event Director, Canadian Running Series

David Grice, President, RaceWorks, Inc.

Matt West, Senior Vice President of Operations, DMSE Sports, Inc.

High School / After-School Events

Ben Rolens, General Manager; Special Events, Reservations, and Marketing, Katy Independent School District


Akin Bryant, Executive Police Lieutenant, University of Michigan – Division of Public Safety and Security

Drew Pittman, Assistant Athletics Director, Facilities, and Operations, Baylor University


Mike McCarroll, Director of Guest Services, SAP Center at San Jose


Billy Langenstein, Director of Event Services, U.S. Bank Stadium

Previous Recipients:

Marathon / Endurance Events

Carly Caulfield, Houston Marathon Committee, 2016
Kyle McLaughlin, TCS NYC Marathon, 2015

National Basketball Association

Kevin Dooley, Spurs Sports & Entertainment/AT&T Center, 2016
Jerome Pickett, National Basketball Association, 2015

Major League Baseball

Sal DeAngelis, Philadelphia Phillies, 2015
Antonio Torres- Roman, Miami Marlins, 2015
Billy Lagenstein, Washington Nationals, 2015

National Hockey League

Chad Ludkey, Nashville Predators and Bridgestone Arena, 2016
Steve Sanchez, Staples Center, 2015

National Football League

Joe Coomer, Global Spectrum at University of Phoenix Stadium, 2015


Andrey Reis, Rio 2016 Olympics, 2016


David Ellis, Boise State University, 2016

Major League Soccer

Dan Lolli, Columbus Crew Soccer Club, 2016

Facility of Merit for Safety and Security Award

This award recognizes a facility that has performed above and beyond normal operations to demonstrate an innovative approach to enhancing safety and security. The chosen facility may also have resolved a significant safety/security issue or incident. The award is selected by each professional league and the NCAA and presented annually by a league official at the National Sports Safety and Security Conference & Exhibition.

2017 Recipients:

Road Race / Endurance Events

Big Sur Marathon

High School / After-School Events

Maryville City Schools

Saginaw Public School District

Richmond Public Schools


Vaught Hemingway Stadium, The University of Mississippi

Ryan Field, Northwestern University

Brooks Field at Wallace Wade Stadium, Duke University


Bridgestone Arena, Nashville Predators


Progressive Field, Cleveland Indians


Levi’s Stadium, San Francisco 49ers

Previous Award Recipients:

NCAA Institutions

Michigan Stadium, University of Michigan, 2016
McLane Stadium, Baylor University, 2016
Lubber Stadium, Grand Valley State University, 2016
Carnie Smith Stadium, Pittsburg State University, 2016
Jordan- Hare Stadium, Auburn University, 2015
Albertsons Stadium, Boise State University, 2015
California Memorial Stadium, University of California, Berkeley, 2015
Alumni Stadium - Boston College, 2014
Common Wealth Stadium - the University of Kentucky, 2014
Yale Bowl - Yale University, 2014
Tiger Stadium - Louisiana State University, 2013
Neyland Stadium- University of Tennessee, Knoxville, 2013
Spartan Stadium - Michigan State University, 2013
Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium - University of Oklahoma, 2012
Ben Hill Griffin Stadium - University of Florida, 2012
Highpoint Solutions Stadium - Rutgers University, 2012
Ohio Stadium - The Ohio State University, 2011
Beaver Stadium - Penn State University, 2011
Kyle Field - Texas A&M University, 2011

National Football League

Lambeau Field - Green Bay, Wisconsin 2016
University of Phoenix Stadium- Glendale, Arizona 2015
MetLife Stadium - East Rutherford, NJ, 2014
University of Phoenix - Glendale, Arizona, 2013
EverBank Field - Jacksonville, Florida, 2012
Gillette Stadium - Boston, Massachusetts, 2011
MetLife Stadium - East Rutherford, New Jersey, 2011

National Hockey League

MTS Centre - Manitoba, Canada 2016
Wells Fargo Center - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 2015
Madison Square Garden - New York, NY, 2014
United Center - Chicago, Illinois 2013
Staples Center - Los Angeles, California, 2012
Joe Louis Arena - Detroit, Michigan, 2011

Major League Baseball

Yankee Stadium - New York City, New York 2016
Nationals Parks-Washington, District of Columbia 2015
Minute Maid Park - Houston, Texas, 2014
Kauffman Stadium - Kansas City, Missouri, 2013
Rangers Ballpark in Arlington - Arlington, Texas, 2012
Safeco Field - Seattle, Washington, 2011

NatioNal Basketball Association

Air Canada Centre - Ontario, Canada 2016
Madison Square Garden - New York, New York, 2015
Smoothie King Center - New Orleans, Louisiana, 2014
American Airlines Arena - Miami, Florida, 2013
Amway Center - Orlando, Florida, 2012
Staples Center - Los Angles, California, 2011

Major League Soccer

Red Bull Arena - Harrison, New Jersey 2015
StubHub Center Los Angeles, California, 2013
Livestrong Sporting Park - Kansas City, Missouri, 2012
PPL Park - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 2011

National Federation High School Associations

Katy Independent School District, 2016
Milton Academy, 2016
Thornton Academy, 2016
Stutler Bowl & legacy Stadium, Cherry Creek School District, 2015
Houseman Field, Grand Rapids School District, 2015
Carmel Clay High School District - Carmel, IN, 2014
Menomonee Falls School District - Menomonee Falls, WI, 2014
Wicomico County Stadium - Salisbury, MD, 2014
Racine Unified School District - Racine, Wisconsin, 2013

Marathon / Endurance

Medtronic Twins Cities Marathon, 2016
TCS New York City Marathon, 2015
Boston Athletic Association, 2014


World Series - Williamsport, Pennsylvania, 2011


United States Tennis Association
Lindner Family Tennis Center - Mason, Ohio, 2012


Martinsville Speedway - Ridgeway, Virginia, 2013
Michigan International Speedway - Brooklyn, Michigan, 2012
Daytona International Speedway - Daytona, Florida, 2011


Texas Motor Speedway - Fort Worth, Texas, 2013


Bruno Event Team - Birmingham, Alabama, 2012
Wegmans Championship - Rochester, New York, 2011
Kraft Nabisco Championship - Rancho Mirage, California, 2011

Sports Security Innovator Award

Sponsored by the Security Industry Association (SIA)
Annual Award given at the National Sports Safety and Security Conference

The award is presented to a member of SIA who has:

  • Demonstrated innovation by developing next-generation solutions to sports safety and security challenges
  • Promoted scholarship and advanced best practices for ensuring the safety and security of participants and attendees at sporting events
  • Advocated for the highest levels of professionalism in the securing of spectator sports venues

2017 Recipient:

- Dave Tynan, Buisness Area Director, Axis Communications

Golden Eagle Award

Presented annual by SDM, this award recognizes excellence in architecture, engineering and construction (A/E/C) specially related to the safety and security of spectators, property and infrastructure of spectator event facilities.  The award will consider the critical design and functionality elements that enable and promote the safety and security of all stakeholders in an efficient and effective manner.


2017 Recipient (selected finalist to be determined by audience):

- Babel Street

2016 Recipient (selected finalist to be determined by audience):

- Genetec – A Unified Security Solution for Knight’s Stadium

2015 Recipient:

- Axis Communications

2014 Recipient:

- MicroPower Technologies

2013 Recipient:

- ISS 24/7

Friends of NCS4 Award

The Friends of NCS4 Award recognizes professionals whose contributions have been invaluable to the advancement of the Center. 
2017 Recipients:
Joey Sturm, Chief of Police, University of Louisiana, Lafayette
Virginia Brophy Achman, Executive Director, Twin Cities in Motion
Troy Brown, Vice President of Stadium Operations, Cleveland Browns
Larry Johnson, Assistant Superintendent and Executive Director of Public Safety and School Security, Grand Rapids Public Schools
Khaled Hatem, Specialized Officer, INTERPOL Project STADIA

2016 Recipients:
Dane Dodd
Andy Burchfield
John King
Wade Morehead
Jeff Steele

2015 Recipients:
Fred Gardy
Richard Morman
Sharon Cessna
Russ Simons
Elliot Hopkins

2014 Recipients:
Bret Becton
Diane Mack
Paul Turner
Don Paisant
Jennifer Gant
Wayne Folkes

2013 Recipients:
Mark Bodenschatz
Mike Caruso
Bill Squires
Gary Gardner
Al Davis

2012 Recipients:
Peter Fos
Bob Hopkins
Ted Hayduk
Doug Thornton
David Meyer