Security Industry Association Names Kelly Ann Christensen, Jason de Souza, John Nemerofsky and Elaine Palome as 2024 Sandy Jones Volunteers of the Year

SIA 2024 Sandy Jones Volunteers of the Year: Kelly Ann Christensen, Jason de Souza, John Nemerofsky, Elaine Palome

The awardees will be honored for their leadership in growing SIA’s programs and services at The Advance, SIA’s annual membership meeting.

SILVER SPRING, Md. –  The Security Industry Association (SIA) has named four recipients of the 2024 Sandy Jones Volunteer of the Year Award, which recognizes SIA volunteers who have made tireless efforts to expand SIA’s programs and services. Kelly Ann Christensen, Jason de Souza, John Nemerofsky and Elaine Palome will be honored with the award at The Advance, SIA’s annual membership meeting, which will be held April 9 during ISC West.

Kelly Ann Christensen is a digital marketing specialist at BCD, an IP video data infrastructure manufacturer, and has spent nearly four years specializing in the security industry. With a focus on digital advertising and marketing analytics, she has certifications in ROI marketing, marketing management, SEO and PPC marketing. Outside of BCD, Christensen is heavily involved in SIA’s RISE community. She serves as head of the RISE Scholarship subcommittee, which provides scholarships to young professionals in the security industry to assist with furthering education, attending industry events, obtaining new certifications and furthering their professional development, and was awarded the SIA RISE Scholarship in 2022. Christensen has also participated in SIA’s Talent Inclusion Mentorship Education (TIME) program, which is designed to promote diversity, equity, inclusion and empowerment of underrepresented identities in the security industry by creating a well-defined pathway for learning and development.

“I’m incredibly honored to be recognized by SIA for this award and so proud of the work I have done with the RISE Steering Committee over the last three years. Since the scholarship program began, we have grown the program from offering 5 scholarships to 18 last year and have been able to impact so many other young professionals in the security industry. It wouldn’t be possible without the amazing and dedicated team we have, and I’m looking forward to another great year!”

With over 30 years in the technology sector, Jason de Souza is a security industry executive based in Miami, Florida, serving as senior vice president, Latin America, at Hanwha Vision. His career spans IT and security technology, with roles in consulting, integration, distribution and manufacturing, with a special focus on leading and motivating diverse, global teams. de Souza possesses over 20 years of experience in Latin America and a deep appreciation of its market and culture. He is chair of SIA’s International Relations Committee, an authoritative resource for SIA members and their partners in priority international security markets beginning with the security market in Latin America, and has been instrumental in developing and evolving SIA’s expansion plan to promote international cooperation between the SIA and Latin American security companies and industry trade associations, including efforts around Expo Seguridad México. de Souza’s leadership has been instrumental in SIA’s efforts to bring its RISE and Women in Security Forum (WISF) communities to Expo Seguridad México, with events at this year’s show, and in development of the conference program at Expo Seguridad México.

“I am profoundly grateful to receive the Sandy Jones Award from SIA. This honor is a testament to the unwavering support, mentorship and inspiration I’ve been fortunate to receive from many within this exceptional community,” said de Souza. “Working alongside the dedicated, passionate professionals at SIA has been an enriching experience, driving not only my personal growth, but also our collective mission to innovate and elevate standards within our industry. I encourage others to engage with SIA, to contribute to and benefit from the incredible work being done. My heartfelt thanks to everyone at SIA for this recognition.”

John Nemerofsky is a distinguished figure in the security industry, boasting over 25 years of experience dedicated to enhancing security technology and protecting enterprise clients nationwide. His leadership as chief operating officer at SAGE Integration, a national security provider, has propelled the company to prominence, overseeing a vast team and significant growth. Nemerofsky’s pivotal contributions to companies like Niscayah, now Stanley Security Systems, highlight his business acumen and versatility. Engaged across various industry fronts, he holds key roles on multiple boards and contributes expert insights through publications. As vice chair for the Foundation for Advancing Security Talent (FAST), Nemerofsky is committed to nurturing the next generation of security professionals. He also serves on the SIA Board of Directors and is chair of SIA’s Member Engagement and Experience Committee. Nemerofsky’s volunteer leadership extends to his championing of SIA’s training, certification and standards programs, including SIA Open Supervised Device Protocol (OSDP), the Security Project Management (SPM) training and the Certified Security Project Management (CSPM) certification program. He has ensured that all SAGE’s project managers are CSPM certified and encouraged his team’s active involvement in programs like Securing New Ground and the SIA Human Resources Working Group. Notable for his industry contributions, Nemerofsky has been honored with prestigious awards and is a frequent speaker at SIA events, including presenting sessions at ISC West.

“I am incredibly grateful and humbled to be recognized as a Sandy Jones Volunteer of the Year by the Security Industry Association,” said Nemerofsky. “This award reinforces the importance of collaboration and dedication within the security community. Let’s continue working together to enhance safety and security for all.”

Elaine Palome is the head of human resources for the Americas at Axis Communications and a member of the Axis Americas Management Team. In this role she oversees all human capital management activities for the United States, Canada and Latin America. Her passions include digital HR, cultural agility and connecting employees to the business through transformational leadership. Prior to joining Axis, Palome held human resources leadership roles in the pharmaceutical, medical device and software industries.  She is a founding member of WISF and serves as co-chair of SIA’s LeadHER Subcommittee, providing key leadership on content development for the annual Security LeadHER conference presented by SIA and ASIS International. Palome has also been involved in SIA’s efforts around the SIA WISF Scholarship, including providing financial support through Axis’ generous participation as a top sponsor of the program, and she champions and encourages her team’s involvement in initiatives and programs like the SIA HR Working Group and FAST. She has been a recipient of the SIA Progress Award and is a member of the inaugural WISF Power 100 list, both of which have recognized recipients who are role models for advancing diversity, equity, inclusion and leadership in the industry. Palome is a frequent speaker at top SIA and industry events and holds the Society for Human Resources Senior Professional Certification (SHRM-SCP) as well as certifications in process communication, Predictive Index, BlueEQ Emotional Intelligence and conflict dynamics as well a graduate degree in the biological sciences.

“What an honor it is to receive this award! Any time I can see my name and Sandy Jones’ in the same sentence is truly a feather in my cap,” said Palome. “I have enjoyed every minute of the work I have done to help build diversity and leadership in our industry. Serving on the Women in Security Forum, participating in the WISF scholarship program, speaking at industry events and chairing the Security  LeadHer conference have provided so many opportunities to learn, grow and build a terrific network of security professionals. This award not only motivates me to continue my efforts, but also serves as a reminder of the positive impact we can make when we come together to support our industry and its members. Thank you!”

“This year, SIA is proud to recognize four winners of the Sandy Jones Volunteer of the Year Award for the first time since 2015. Awarding this honor to multiple individuals reflects the exceptional engagement within SIA in areas that directly impact our members and their employees, including workforce development, training, international business opportunities and mentorship, and these awardees have done so all while elevating the value of being part of the SIA membership community,” said SIA CEO Don Erickson. “Kelly Ann Christensen, Jason de Souza, John Nemerofsky and Elaine Palome are remarkable leaders and people, and their dedication to SIA, as well as their industry expertise, vision and innovation, have helped SIA to better serve our members and to the broader industry.”

Inspired by these volunteers’ noteworthy contributions? Employees of SIA member companies can make the most out of their memberships by getting more involved with the association. Volunteer opportunities include joining SIA committees or groups, lending expertise to SIA’s education and training programs, participating in SIA’s advocacy efforts, contributing to SIA’s publications and thought leadership and getting involved in SIA events. Learn more and get started as a volunteer.  

The Advance 2024 will take place on Tuesday, April 9, at 10:30 a.m. in The Venetian Expo during ISC West. At this special membership meeting, attendees will review official association business, meet the new SIA board members and participate in SIA elections, recognize volunteer achievements from the past year, exchange market intelligence for the year ahead and enjoy a dynamic keynote presentation from Rita Mounir, co-founder and CEO of Allthenticate and vice chair of SIA’s Member Engagement and Experience Committee. In addition to presenting the Sandy Jones Volunteer of the Year Awards, SIA will honor the 2024 recipients of the SIA Member of the Year Award, Chair’s Award and Committee Chair of the Year Award. Learn more and register to attend.

About the Security Industry Association

SIA is the leading trade association for global security solution providers, with over 1,400 innovative member companies representing thousands of security leaders and experts who shape the future of the security industry. SIA protects and advances its members’ interests by advocating pro-industry policies and legislation at the federal and state levels, creating open industry standards that enable integration, advancing industry professionalism through education and training, opening global market opportunities, and collaborating with other like-minded organizations. As the premier sponsor of ISC Events expos and conferences, SIA ensures its members have access to top-level buyers and influencers, as well as unparalleled learning and network opportunities. SIA also enhances the position of its members in the security marketplace through SIA GovSummit, which brings together private industry with government decision makers, and Securing New Ground, the security industry’s top executive conference for peer-to-peer networking.