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Gannett Fleming Expands Security and Safety Services Practice to Protect Nation's Infrastructure

Gannett Fleming Expands Security and Safety Services Practice to Protect Nation’s Infrastructure
James “Jim” E. Smith, MBA, CPP, PSP; Gene Perry, CPP, PSP; Jay C. Harper, TSSP; and Brandon S. Huckeba, MBA, MIM, CISSP
(Harrisburg, Pa.)

Global infrastructure firm Gannett Fleming, Inc. has expanded its Security and Safety Practice to meet the growing need to protect the country’s infrastructure. James “Jim” E. Smith, MBA, CPP, PSP; Gene Perry, CPP, PSP; Jay C. Harper, TSSP; and Brandon S. Huckeba, MBA, MIM, CISSP, have joined the firm.

“There are innumerable benefits to connected or ‘smart’ infrastructure – greater efficiencies, improved and more reliable services, and responsive capabilities are just a few. But a host of risks and vulnerabilities come with these advancements,” said McEwan van der Mandele, CPP, vice president of the Security and Safety Services Practice at Gannett Fleming. “This is in addition to what might be considered more traditional threats like natural events, accidents, and terrorism. Jim, Gene, Jay, and Brandon bring more than 120 years of collective experience to our team, which takes great pride in protecting our country’s infrastructure from these threats.”

With more than 30 years of experience in the security industry, Smith joins Gannett Fleming as director of Security and Safety Services, with a focus on the critical infrastructure and federal markets. Based in the firm’s Washington, D.C., office, he is responsible for leading security planning, project management, and business development efforts both in the federal government and internationally.

Smith most recently held a Supervisory Protective Security Advisor (PSA) position, responsible for the Protective Security Coordination Division Operations Center supporting nationwide PSA operations for the Department of Homeland Security. He has also held positions at headquarters for the Federal Protective Service, Department of the Army, and Navy Installations Command, as well as with the Naval Facilities Engineering Command. In addition, Smith has worked in private industry as a consultant and as a national account manager, providing security services for a large global data center company. He has traveled worldwide, supporting critical assets in the energy, financial services, transportation systems, commercial and government facilities, information technology, and defense industrial sectors. Smith is a U.S. Army veteran and Bronze Star recipient.  

He earned a Bachelor of Science in liberal studies from Regents College, a Master of Business Administration from the University of Phoenix, and a Master of Arts in business organizational security management from Webster University. Smith has taught resident and distance undergraduate and graduate courses for various schools and universities, and he is an active member of the American Society of Industrial Security International, the Society for Risk Analysis, and Strategic and Competitive Intelligence Professionals. He is a Certified Protection Professional, Physical Security Professional, and has a Professional Development Certificate in critical infrastructure protection and resilience. He is conversant in German, Serbo-Croat, Arabic, and Spanish.

Perry brings more than 25 years of safety and security experience to his role as a senior security and safety consultant for Gannett Fleming’s water and power clients. With a focus on government security technology and force protection, he provides direction on physical protective systems development; design, implementation, and policy development; conducts threat and vulnerability assessments and develops mitigation strategies, emergency response plans, and security planning guidelines; and leads security investment prioritization and security policy recommendations. He also supports the firm’s security growth strategies on a national level. He is based in Cincinnati, Ohio.

Prior to his current role, Perry provided security consulting and program management services to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), leading more than 250 security risk studies and physical security inspections of civil works infrastructure, managing the evaluation of security programs across 36 USACE Division and District commands, adapting the Army’s Security Management System physical security software application to USACE civil works, and developing security policy documents and engineering regulations on security topics. A distinguished veteran with 20 years of Army experience, Perry served as a military policeman responsible for leading the force protection mission for the 1st Special Forces Operational Detachment – Delta; administering and directing global antiterrorism, physical security, and emergency preparedness programs; and developing, implementing, and enforcing security policy, procedures, and risk mitigation strategies. He deployed multiple times in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and was awarded the Combat Action Badge and two Bronze Stars.

Perry earned a Bachelor of Science in criminal justice from Troy University and a Master of Arts in business and organizational security management from Webster University. He has been a member of the American Society for Industrial Security since 2009 and has served as chairman of the Cincinnati Tri-State Chapter. Perry is also a member of the FBI Infragard and the United States Technical Assistance Group to the International Standards Organization Technical Committee for Security (US TAG to ISO/TC 292) where he contributes to the development of ISO standards in security. He also served as a technical committee member to the published National Risk Assessment Standard (ANSI/ASIS/RIMS.RA1-2015).

Harper brings more than 30 years of experience in public transit to Gannett Fleming and serves as director of Security and Safety Services. Based in the Phoenix office, he oversees security for Phase 2 of the PHX Sky Train® project, and leverages his deep knowledge of Valley Metro to provide safety and security services during design and construction of the public transportation agency’s South Central Rail project. He is also responsible for developing the safety and security business in the western region.

In Harper’s most recent past position with a safety and security consulting firm, he managed the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation Safety and Security Certification effort that included implementation of alternative methods of system certification, auditing certification completion, and preparing for state and federal safety and security reviews. Prior to this role, he served as Valley Metro’s director of operations and maintenance, followed by chief of safety and security, for which he was responsible for all aspects of operations and maintenance, then rail safety and security for the agency’s $1.4 billion light rail system. Harper also served as operations supervisor for bus and rail at the Utah Transit Authority and was responsible for the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympic Games Rail Plan and implementation.

Harper graduated from the University of Utah with a Bachelor of Science in communication. He earned the Transit Safety and Security Program Certificate administered by the Transportation Safety Institute. Harper is an active participant in the American Public Transportation Association’s Rail Safety and Security Committees and the Transportation Research Board’s safety synthesis studies.

Huckeba strengthens Gannett Fleming’s Cybersecurity and Compliance Group as a cybersecurity professional with more than 25 years of experience in cyber counterintelligence, digital forensics, and cybersecurity analysis, as well as in instruction. From the firm’s Phoenix office, he employs his expertise in aggressive detection and countermeasures to conduct security software implementations. He also leads client education and trainings to reduce their vulnerability to social engineering and ransomware attacks. 

In addition to his new role with Gannett Fleming, Huckeba continues his nearly 30-year military career as a chief warrant officer and cyber counterintelligence technician with the U.S. Army Reserve, for which he is a Department of Defense Certified Instructor (CI). He has trained CI agents as first responders for cyberattacks, conducted forensic investigations for espionage cases, and deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom as the chief and officer in charge of the Operational Management Team for the 368th Military Intelligence Battalion. He also served as a cyber counterintelligence special agent and forensics examiner for the 902nd Military Intelligence Group, during which he served as instructor for CI special agents; conducted evidence seizure, collection, examination, and analysis; and led cyber threat briefings in support of the FBI’s Tech Protect Program.

Huckeba’s private sector experience includes roles with a leading financial services corporation, a global aerospace and defense company, and information security companies. He was a Juniper Networks Security Instructor, teaching JNCIA, JNCIS-SEC, and JNCIP-SEC.

He graduated from Benedictine College with a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy and Spanish, and earned his master’s in international management and international business administration from the Thunderbird School of Global Management at Arizona State University. He was a subject matter expert board member for the creation of a new industry certification in incident response. Additionally, he is a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP), CEH, Security+, Network+, DOD Certified Forensics Examiner, DOD Certified Media Collector and CFR-210, Certified Cybersecurity Incident Responder, and member of (ISC)2 and SouthWest Security Professionals Forum.

Gannett Fleming’s Security and Safety Practice serves as a single source provider of security and safety services to local, state, federal, and private sector clients. The firm offers access to regulatory, physical security, cybersecurity, safety and public safety, engineering, and tactical expertise. Services include:

  • Hazard, threat, vulnerability, and security and risk analysis
  • Public safety assessments and planning that include the application of Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design principles
  • Security- and safety-related analysis, design, and certification
  • Operational planning and exercising of emergency response and disaster recovery plans
  • The power grid, FERC/NEI/NERC/NRC regulatory compliance, and IEC and IEEE industry standards
  • Control systems engineering, security architecture, critical asset identification, defense-in-depth strategies and metrics for measuring security controls
  • Cybersecurity assessments and policy development
  • Risk mitigation with budgetary estimates for security enhancement implementation
  • Development and consultation on Design Basis Threat application for security design enhancements
  • Electronic security system construction management support.

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