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Town Hall – The Future Role of Policing in the Sports & Entertainment Industry

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  • Town Hall -The Future Role of Policing in the Sports & Entertainment Industry
     April 27, 2023
     1:00 pm - 2:30 pm


On April 27, 2023,  the Innovation Institute for Fan Experience (IIFX) and its Xperience Consortium will host another in its series of Virtual Town Hall and webinar events, The Future Role of Policing in the Sports & Entertainment Industry

This 90-minute event will begin at 1 PM Central Time/2 PM Eastern.  You will receive your ticket with a link to the free event the night before, and again on the morning of the event via email.


Meet the Town Hall Panel:

MODERATOR: Gary Gardner President and CEO of TOTALeACCESS and IIFX Distinguished Fellow

Gary brings over forty years of investigative, security, intelligence, analysis, forensic, technology, management and teaching experience to the national and international business and law enforcement communities. Gary is a decorated U.S. Army Ranger veteran with service in Vietnam.  His career includes more than thirty years of diverse service with the Federal Bureau of Investigation in executive management, as Supervisor/Co-Commander of both the renowned Bank Robbery and Terrorism Task Forces in the New York City Office. At FBI Headquarters, he oversaw cutting-edge investigative information technology and crisis management.  Gary later served as NASCAR’s Director of Security, overseeing all aspects of NASCAR’s corporate and event security, investigations; physical and cyber security; international security, employment screening and executive protection. He collaborated with the US Department of Homeland Security to establish the first evacuation guide for large sporting events. Gary established TOTALeACCESS specializing in state-of-the–art security, risk/crisis management, intelligence collection/analysis, investigations, information security/cybercrime, training.  Gary serves as Chairman of the InfraGard National Board of Directors where he has led strategic growth of programs and membership to over 70,000. He is also a member of the National Center for Spectator Sports Security and Safety (NCS4) Advisory Board.. 


Rick Fenton – Senior Director for Corporate Security, Safety, and Investigation at Ilitch Holdings and IIFX Distinguished Fellow

Rick joined Ilitch Holdings in 2000, as the Senior Director for Corporate Security, Safety, and Investigations.  He was promoted to Vice President of Corporate Security in 2005 and became Chief Security Officer in 2018.  Rick oversees/directs all corporate security and safety functions, venue security and safety, security systems, corporate loss prevention, investigations, and executive services across all the Ilitch Companies. Rick led Corporate efforts for DHS SAFETY Act Certification for the Security Program at Comerica Park / Detroit Tigers and the Security Design at the Little Caesars Arena/ Detroit Red Wings, earning the SAFETY Act and NCS4 SESA Designation for Joe Louis Arena / Little Caesars Arena Security Program. Rick is additionally the National Chairman for the NCS4 National Advisory Board.  Before joining Ilitch Holdings, Rick served as the Executive Commander of the Wayne County Sheriff Department.  He retired in May 2000 after more than twenty-seven (27) years of service.   Rick is the Co-Founder of the innovative and successful Public Safety/Private Security Partnership, “LIGHTHOUSE PROGRAM.”  The “LIGHTHOUSE PROGRAM” is a multifaceted Law Enforcement/Private Security program developed for the City of Detroit’s Central Business District with the goal of enhancing the safety and security of this “vibrant area” for guests, patrons, employees, and residents through cooperative and coordinated private/public partnerships of security and law enforcement entities serving the area.


Jim Mercurio – IIFX Distinguished Fellow and Former Executive Vice President & General Manager @San Francisco 49ers

Jim spent more than 30 years with the San Francisco 49ers, becoming executive vice president & general manager, Levi’s Stadium.  Jim oversaw all aspects of stadium & event operations including executive oversight of the food and beverage operations, engineering, grounds, guest services, housekeeping, operations & logistics, parking, and transportation. He additionally managed all police and security services, including 24/7 stadium security operations, and game & event day medical services, working with various local, state, and federal governmental agencies.  Jim worked with design firm HNTB and builder TDJV Turner/Devcon to get Levi’s Stadium designed, built and fully operational ahead of schedule and under budget.  Levi’s Stadium has played host to high profile events including the 2019 College Football Playoff National Championship, the NHL Stadium Series, WrestleMania 31, Copa America Centenario, and Super Bowl 50.  Jim was instrumental in working with the bid committee to get the Super Bowl’s golden anniversary to the Bay Area in February 2016, which is billed as one of the most successful Super Bowls in NFL history and has set records across the board including transferring 10.1 TB of data Super Bowl Sunday. Under Jim’s leadership, Levi’s Stadium has garnered international recognition, most notably the prestigious Sports Business Journal 2015 Sports Facility of the Year award, as well as several green and sustainability honors.  Prior to being named vice president in 2009, Jim spent four years as the director of stadium operations for the 49ers at Candlestick Park. During his 49ers tenure, Jim has become an NFL leader in security and stadium management. He developed the stadium emergency evacuation video for the 49ers that has since been mirrored by arenas and stadiums affiliated with the NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL, and NCAA.

Eileen Williams MBE – Senior Safety Officer, Tottenham Hotspur Football Club, IIFX Distinguished Fellow, and Managing Director, London, UK @Rookery Consultants

Eileen is a Distinguished Fellow for the Innovation Institute for Fan Experience (IIFX).  For more than 20 years, Eileen has worked in the event industry, and specializes in safety, security and service delivery at major sporting events and music festivals. Her portfolio includes key operational roles in stadium event management, mass recruitment, workforce management, training, and development with the extended skills of the design, implementation, and delivery of national and international qualifications. Her experience ranges across in country global events -FIFA World Cup and Rugby & Cricket World Cup events and multiple site global tournaments – Olympics & Commonwealth Games and planning and design of freestanding festival and concert locations.  At present, Eileen is the Senior Safety Officer at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. This stadium was opened in 2019 and is a multipurpose venue where she has been leading on the mobilization of the stadium since 2019 to present. Eileen is the Lead the safety planner for Football, boxing, NFL, and concerts.

Joe Monroe – Chief of Police, University of Kentucky Police Department

Joe was named University of Kentucky Chief of Police in November of 2009 following a three-year tenure as the department’s Interim Chief of Police. His police career began at Transylvania University Department of Public Safety in 1991 before joining the University of Kentucky Police in 1994.  Joe is the first Chief of Police to advance through the ranks at the University of Kentucky after starting as an officer. Chief Monroe took command of the police department that once was 52 employees and today he oversees 191 employees and an $11 million annual budget. During his tenure at the University of Kentucky Police, he has served as Patrol Officer, Detective, Patrol Supervisor roles as a Sergeant and Lieutenant, and Major of Administration before becoming Chief.  Joe was also instrumental in the restructuring of campus safety units at the University of Kentucky where he now oversees the operations of the police, security for UK Healthcare facilities, campus security technology, and several other units. Additionally, he leads the University’s Crisis Management Response team efforts.  Chief Monroe has served as the Incident Commander for numerous large-scale events and responses. In addition, he has served as the leader in the University of Kentucky’s Emergency Operations Center managing crisis responses, mitigation, and prevention for the University. Chief Monroe is the longest serving Police Chief at the University of Kentucky Police Department since its inception in 1972.


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