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CU System
GTE FCUs work pays off for Super Bowl security
TAMPA, Fla. (2/13/09)--GTE FCU hosted the Super Bowl XLIII operations center where more than 200 representatives of 31 local, regional and federal law enforcement and emergency medical management agencies provided security Feb. 1.
A mobile command center was set up in the rear parking lot of GTE FCU, Tampa, Fla., to help with security operations during Super Bowl XLIII on Feb. 1.
The fourth floor of the GTE FCU administration building was used as a secure room to house security and emergency operations for Super Bowl XLIII. (Photos provided by GTE FCU)
The center was responsible for security operations during the game. There were no bomb threats, hazardous materials spills, terrorist attacks or other potential catastrophes at the Super Bowl. Because GTE FCU leadership was supportive, representatives from the National Football League, Tampa’s police and fire departments, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Customs, Homeland Security and others worked under one roof for the first time in Super Bowl history, said Stephen Foster, GTE FCU vice president of real estate. He oversees security, facilities and land acquisition for the credit union. Two years of training and coordination--along with some sophisticated surveillance and communications equipment--ensured that all Super Bowl activities went according to the security and emergency team’s playbook, said the $2.189 billion asset Tampa, Fla.-based credit union. Several weeks before the Super Bowl, operations center team members began working in spaces on the second and fourth floors of the GTE FCU administration building, just north of downtown Tampa. A mobile command center also was set up in the credit union’s rear parking lot. Having all security personnel in one location kept costs down because additional facilities did not have to be built, as was the case in Arizona for last year’s Super Bowl, said Chauncia Willis, emergency coordinator for Tampa Fire Rescue. The only construction project needed for the Super Bowl XLIII security and emergency operations team was the building of a secure room on the fourth floor of the credit union’s administration building. “GTE FCU met a lot of the needs for different agencies,” Willis said. “The NFL felt very comfortable with our decision to use the facility to house multiple command centers for Super Bowl XLIII.”
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