C.O.P.S.' vice president special projects Maria Malice recently won the 2011 Arizona Alarm Company Person of the Year honor for an unprecedented fourth straight year. I've spoken with Maria before when she won the honor in 2009 and spotlighted her seemingly bottomless well of energy when it comes to working for the industry in her home state of Arizona.
First of all, congrats to you Maria--again.
I had a chance to chat with Maria via email about her fourth year being honored. Maria found out about the win on Wednesday, September 28th at the AzAA (for those of you who read my last blog post, that's Arizona Alarm Association) Annual Convention, Law Enforcement Appreciation Dinner. I corresponded with her just a few days later
Please find that interview below.
Maria, what do you think won you the honor this year?
I think it is because of all the work I do with the cities when they are looking at their ordinances and considering making a change or starting a new ordinance. We try to find a happy medium that works for all involved. The police department, the end user, and the alarm industry. I work with the departments through the writing process if possible and then toward the end before the send it to council in checking it over. Also when they go to city council I come to the meetings and speak on behalf of the AzAA as to our thoughts on the new ordinance.
In starting to work with a city it is important to know their goal in writing or changing an ordinance. Then when I read through an ordinance I keep their goal in mind, then I look for everything from typos, to conflicts within the ordinance, to what's fair and reasonable to all and make the appropriate suggestions to the city. The ordinance has to be good for all three parties involved, the end user, the PD, and the industry. I work very hard to keep an open mind and consider all the parties involved.
Also, when they have issues that come up, I work as a resource to assist them in finding a resolution.
Well it certainly sounds like it keeps you busy. Where have you been busy lately?
This past year, Mesa, Tucson, Avondale, Glendale, and now Peoria. Tucson and Avondale being the highest profile Cities.
What is there still to do (in other words, where are you focusing your energy right now)?
Right now Tucson is struggling with reworking their ordinance and there are some conflicts between the different companies in Tucson. Everything from licensing requirements, to permit fees is creating the dissention between the companies. So working with the companies and the police dept in their efforts to find a solution that all can live with before going back to City Council.
In Avondale I am working with them on the ordinance they passed to fine the alarm company for all false alarms. We are making progress in effecting a change in that ordinance.
I'm also gearing up for once again submitting a bill for statewide alarm licensing.
Do you think a fifth year as Arizona's top security person is in the cards?
Anything is possible, but I am really hoping that others within the Association will step up and take a more active role in working with the Cities. Too many times people are complacent and let others do the work that everyone benefits from. It is important that we all understand that we have to work together toward the betterment of our communications with the police departments we work with daily, and the betterment of our industry and the communities we live and work in.
I would love to see someone else win because that means they get it and will have taken an active role in their industry and community. When that happens we all win!!