Chief Legal Counsel & COO, DSI Security Services
Where he came from:
Eddie started out in the early 1990s as a security officer. He was an undergraduate in college at the time. The plan was to go to law school and follow in his father’s footsteps, who was a local prosecutor.
Instead, Eddie found he enjoyed the security business, so he stayed. His employer, DSI Security Services, promoted him to branch manager where he thrived for several years. Over time, his talents kept him moving up in the company, eventually joining the executive management team.
In 2001, he decided he was “still young” and could return to law school. He commuted two hours away, back and forth for three and half years. He passed the bar and then became Chief Legal Counsel as well as COO for the company.
“For eleven or so years this has proven invaluable for me,” says Sorrells. “This industry has legal ramifications at every corner. It is just the nature of our business, being fraught with legal issues.”
He has now celebrated his 25th anniversary at DSI Security Services.
Challenges facing security companies?
“Keeping up with information and technology is the biggest challenge for the industry in general. Our services are more and more based on information and education these days. The stereotype of the security officer was he or she was just a night watchman sitting there. But now there are more security officers than there are law enforcement officers. So the growth of the industry is dependent on keeping up with information and technology,” says Sorrells.
“There are so many more types of businesses and facilities that have security operations these days. This is positive for the industry as far as growth but also means that education will continue to play a critical role.
“Video, for example, is a technology becoming more important. We as a company are being asked to be a supplier of informational assets as well as people. Video can be used well as a force multiplier, helping to cover more grounds with less people. But, to be successful it must be used in combination with people.”
Advice for young people looking at careers in the security industry?
“I tell young people it is one of the greatest industries to get into. But it is challenging. If you like excitement and problem solving then this is the industry for you,” says Sorrells.
“I also advise them not to neglect starting at the bottom in your learning curve. I have held just about every position in the industry and that helps me. The industry begins and ends with the security officer. The role they play is far greater day to day than I play. So, learning from the ground up is a most valuable path.”