“School shootings and other forms of school violence are not just a school’s problem or a law enforcement problem. They involve schools, families, and the communities.”
Why School Safety 360?
School shootings did not begin with the shooting at Columbine High school in Lakewood, Colorado; but they are synonymous in the minds of anyone old enough to remember. Every parent sympathizes the pain those victims’ families must endure. It’s a nightmare to even contemplate a text from your child that they are on lockdown and shots are being fired.
While most American’s likely don’t realize the true nature and reality of the dangers our youth face, school safety has quickly become one of our nation’s top priorities. According to Bloomberg, over the last few years spending on school safety has increased by a staggering 81%.
“If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.” – Abraham Maslow
Despite America’s increased spending on school safety resources, homicide rates and active shooter incidents have increased dramatically. Over the last few years, school homicides have increased by 45% and the average annual number of active shooter incidents has increased by 156%. 1.4 million students faced some sort of victimization on school grounds in 2013. In fact, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), young people in America are 58% more likely to face victimization and 85% more likely to face violent victimization while at school than anywhere else. For the first time in our nation’s history, America’s schools have become the most likely place to encounter youth victimization and violence.
The Fight Back Foundation, through its School Safety 360 initiative, is committed to keeping our children and the schools they attend safe. We are launching a pilot to test comprehensive security assessments detailing vulnerabilities at schools and then provide meaningful and actionable information and services to address those. Our intent is to help schools make informed decisions about the use of their precious resources and to get the best results possible.
School Safety 360 Team
Retired Special Agent Darrin Gilbert had a 24 year career in law enforcement for the United States federal government. During his career, Agent Gilbert worked for the Department of Homeland Security, Veterans Affairs, Bureau of Prisons, General Services Administration and the US Army. Mr. Gilbert worked for three years in the United States Penitentiary Administrative Maximum, the Supermax. There, he served as a member of their Special Operation Response Team and Hostage Negotiation Team liaison.
While working at DHS, Agent Gilbert was a Special Agent for the Threat Management Branch of the Federal Protective Service. FPS is tasked for providing security for over 9,000 federal facilities. Following hurricane Katrina, FPS managed all security in the devastated areas. Agent Gilbert was assigned to oversee security and criminal investigations for two months of the recovery.
Agent Gilbert was assigned to Secret Service security detail for President Obama’s 2009 inauguration. He was assigned as presidential protection for a two-block section of the parade route. The event was attended by 1.8 million people. At the time, it was recorded as the largest security operation in the world. For 3 years, he was assigned full time to the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force where his investigations resulted in successful prosecution of both domestic and international terrorism cases.
For nine years, Agent Gilbert was assigned to the Office of Inspector General of the Veterans Affairs and GSA. There, he investigated a wide variety of complex crimes. He worked many large scale prosecutions, sometimes involving as many as nine federal agencies. He worked cases involving public corruption, sexual assault, drug diversion, weapon violations and every fraud scheme imaginable. These investigations involved a variety of advanced techniques to include undercover operations, drug transactions, wiretaps, and covert surveillance.
Sergeant Gilbert served as the Noncommissioned Officer in Charge of the Interrogation Section for the 1st Infantry Division, US Army. There, he coordinated several intelligence operations while assigned to the Intelligence Security Command, now known as the Defenses Intelligence Agency. Mr, Gilbert is a graduate of the Defense Language Institute Russian Language program.
Heidi is the founder of Camp Bow Wow, a $100 million leader in the pet and franchise industry. For this effort, she has received many accolades including Fortune Magazine’s Top 10 Most Promising Entrepreneurs, and the 2016 Colorado Brave Leader Award.
She also founded the Fight Back Foundation, an incubator built to support social entrepreneurs that want to tackle the most pressing societal issues confronting kids today. In 2015, she was appointed by the Governor of Colorado to the School Safety and Youth in Crisis Committee—established to study issues relating to school safety.
Harvey Hughes is responsible for developing strategic products and partnerships to help solve problems in education. Prior to starting Computer Automation Systems and SEAS Education, Mr. Hughes was a systems programmer and data conversion specialist for Wal-Mart and led numerous data management and electronic distribution projects.
Earlier in his career, Mr. Hughes was a member of the Boeing Aerospace NASA Space Station contract team. His responsibilities included developing and deploying strategic technologies for both Boeing and NASA engineers. Mr. Hughes holds a BS in Computer Science from Arkansas State University.