Past Director of the Year Winners to Share Successes, Struggles in Campus Safety Conference Panel

Published: June 2, 2023

HENDERSON, Nev. — The effective protection of a campus requires its top public safety, emergency management, or security executive to possess a unique skill set. Ensuring his or her efforts are supported by administrators, staff members, and the community as a whole is probably the most important skill of all.

No one knows this better than the past winners of the Campus Safety Director of the Year awards program. That’s why we’ve asked several of them to be part of a powerhouse panel at Campus Safety Conference West, happening July 10-12 at the M Resort Spa Casino in Henderson, Nevada.

Now in its 16th year, the program honors the best and brightest executives in hospital, university and school security, law enforcement and emergency management. The program highlights a wide variety of achievements in the campus security community.

The panel, “Insights from CS Directors of the Year,” happening July 12 and sponsored by A3 Communications, will discuss various strategies they’ve incorporated over the years to foster internal and external stakeholder support for their departments, people, projects, and equipment.

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Just prior to the panel, we will announce the 2023 winner at the Director of the Year Breakfast and Award Ceremony.

Until then, here’s more on these panelists’ impressive accomplishments that landed them the titles of Directors of the Year.

Register for Campus Safety Conference West – Advanced pricing ends June 14!

2015 Higher Ed/Healthcare Director of the Year

William Adcox, Chief of Police and Chief Security Officer, University of Texas at MD Anderson Cancer Center/University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston

Notable accomplishments:

  • Implemented a Combined Protection Model to promote unified response and service delivery while thoughtfully rewarding teamwork across five service units
  • Led effort to create and enhance datasets and dashboards that provide actionable insights and enable data-informed decision-making
  • Directed UT Police to join a cohort of more than 20 police agencies pledging to increase the representation of women in law enforcement

2016 K-12 Director of the Year

Kevin Wren, Former Director of Safety, Security and Emergency Management, Rock Hill Schools

Notable accomplishments:

  • Developed and delivered an emergency management planning system with role-specific and site-specific components, quick reference guides and comprehensive scenario protocols
  • Rolled out a district-wide online safety training system that led to an 18 percent decrease in accidents and claims
  • Executed more than $5 million in security-driven capital improvements involving structural upgrades for access control, visitor management, video surveillance, digital radios and fences

2022 Higher Ed Director of the Year

Anthony Pluretti, Executive Director of Campus Safety, Widener University

Notable accomplishments:

  • Saved the university $400,000 per year by eliminating the school’s third-party security contract
  • Improved officer morale by relaxing grooming standards, allowing officers to grow facial hair, show appropriate tattoos, change their hair color and allow female officers to wear their hair in a fashion that they preferred
  • Re-wrote the annual security and fire safety report, digitized the daily crime and daily fire logs, created an interactive public online crime portal for Clery geography and crime monitoring, created more efficient methods of tracking crime statistics throughout the year, and educated staff members and student groups about the importance of the Clery Act

Listen to this podcast interview with Pluretti to hear more about these accomplishments.

2022 K-12 Director of the Year

Allen Cain, Security Director, Gilbert Public Schools

Notable accomplishments:

  • Partnered with the operations department in orchestrating the construction of secure entryways at all five traditional high schools and one elementary school
  • Developed a district-wide student-parent reunification plan and then conducted an exercise to test the plan
  • Implemented an anonymous tip line where anyone can report concerning behavior. Since its inception, the district has received 200 tips – some of which have led to criminal prosecutions

Listen to this podcast interview with Cain to hear more about these accomplishments.

To register for one of the Campus Safety Conferences or to check out the agenda, visit

Strategy & Planning Series
Strategy & Planning Series
Strategy & Planning Series
Strategy & Planning Series
Strategy & Planning Series