Read our interview with Billy Langenstein of U.S. Bank Stadium, as the Security Industry Association (SIA) spotlights a young professional on the rise!
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SIA: Tell us a little bit about yourself.
Billy Langenstein: I have spent three years with SMG at U.S. Bank Stadium as director of event services. I am responsible for security, public safety and emergency preparedness, medical services, transportation, guest experience and event oversight. I work closely with the Minnesota Vikings, the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority and the entire community to deliver a safe, clean and family-friendly experience at each event.
SIA: What first got you interested in security and safety as a career choice?
BL: I was introduced to the field of sports and entertainment industry at age 15 when I worked as a water boy for an event security and medical company in my hometown of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, supporting music and sports venues across the city. As my curiosity and passion for the business grew, I was given more opportunities to learn about the field of security and event operations. Learning all facets of the business of putting on live events and how the different components and departments come together is what excites me the most.
SIA: What has your career path been?
BL: Prior to taking on my role at U.S. Bank Stadium, I spent five seasons with the Washington Nationals as director of event operations. I was responsible for the day-to-day guest experience, parking and transportation, housekeeping and overall event setup and breakdown operations. Prior to joining the Nationals, I worked as an operations assistant with Live Nation, supporting event operations and production at many of the company’s music venues.
SIA: Who has influenced you or mentored you – either within the security field or outside?
BL: I have been very fortunate to have several mentors who have guided me along the way since I first started in the industry at age 15. Surrounding myself with people who are smarter than me, can share life experiences and push me to be my best every day is what has helped me shape the person I am today and continue to exceed my expectations and life’s aspirations. My mentors have inspired me, pushed me, connected with me, opened my mind and surrounded me with ways to learn.
SIA: What’s something most people don’t know about you?
BL: I graduated from the University of Maryland with a bachelor’s degree in communication, and I hold a master’s degree in sports management from Georgetown University. I am a winner of the National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security (NSC4) Industry Leader Under 40 Award for both the MLB and NFL, and I have earned the Certified Sport Security Professional certification. I was awarded the 20 Under 40 Award by Security Systems News and the 30 Under 30 Award by the IAVM Foundation.
I actively seek ongoing education opportunities to further and strengthen my knowledge and ability to grow in the business. My commitment to the profession is vast. I currently serve as a member of the NFL Stadium Security Committee led by NFL Chief and Senior Vice President of Security Cathy Lanier, the chair of the IAVM Stadium Committee, a faculty member for the Academy of Venue Safety and Security, a member of the NSC4’s Professional Sport Facilities Advisory Committee, a SIA steering committee member, a SIA RISE Member, a board member for the Minneapolis Police Activities League and a master trainer for Team Coalition.
My true passion is in the realm of professional development and leadership; I take continuing educational classes, share knowledge with my colleagues and continue to be a student in the industry.
SIA: What do you enjoy most about being at your company – and in the security industry?
BL: Working at U.S. Bank Stadium, I have the opportunity to make people smile when they walk into the stadium. I am able to entertain them and regardless of the outcome on the field, I can create a memorable experience for that guest. There is no better feeling in the world that watching people smile as they walk into your event.
SIA: What advice do you have for young professionals just starting out in the industry?
BL: Be curious! Learn as much as you can throughout your journey by asking questions, learning from your peers and volunteering for opportunities. Find out what motivates and excites you, and bring that passion to your job, your goals and, most importantly, your life’s journey. It is passion for what you love to do and what you want to do that will help drive you.
Learn more about U.S. Bank Stadium at usbankstadium.com.