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True Steel tops at international dealer awards--again.

Greater Sudbury -- Within a company that relies on crime within the city to exist, there is a crew of compassionate, concerned citizens. The staff at True Steel Security is involved in the community and good deeds do not go unnoticed.

At a General Electric (GE) Security Pro conference held in Hawaii recently, five awards were handed out among 260 GE dealers worldwide.

True Steel Security brought two of the five awards back to Sudbury with them. Winning two in one year was a bit of a surprise to True Steel Security general manager John Whitehead, but he is no stranger to the podium when it comes to Security Pro awards.

In 2002, True Steel became the first Security Pro retailer based outside of the United States to be named Dealer of the Year. In 2003, the company made history again by being the first-ever dealer to win the award a second time.

This year, Whitehead accepted the Best Integrated Approach to Residential Marketing award for having the most effective marketing plan.

True Steel Security is a "very large" part of the communities it operates within. Among the company's many marketed services is Care-Link, a 24-hour medical alarm response system that debuted in 2005.

But even closer to Whitehead's heart is the Security Is A Family Matter Award.

"Our security systems are a great answer to combating break and enter, theft and vandalism," Whitehead says. "However these are just symptoms of unhealthy families. As a member of this community, we want to make a bigger difference; a more permanent difference. We want to address the root of the problem, not just the symptoms."

To that end, True Steel has implemented a number of programs and charity sponsorships aimed at improving the living conditions of children most vulnerable to slipping into a life of crime.

"Our goal is to reduce the child abuse and other root causes of the criminal behaviour," he says. "To this end, we support many child-oriented organizations because we believe that better childhood and upbringings result in more responsible teens and adults with higher self-esteem and stronger morals. This is itself will reduce crime and make our communities a safer place to live."

Whitehead is involved with an organization called Our Children, Our Future. This organization holds workshops for families in Greater Sudbury. A workshop for single parents called School's Cool helps to prepare children, that may not have had the resources to go to many social events in their early years, for the socialization that comes in the first days of kindergarten.

True Steel Security advertises for Our Children, Our Future on their company flyers. As well, when they visit someone's home they begin their visit by telling the customer about Our Children, Our Future and the benefits it has on the community.

"Kidz Printz" kits are also supplied to parents in the community. This small kit provides the proper space to place the child's fingerprints, hair sample, photograph and written information. If a person's child is to go missing this will provide the investigating police officer with all the information needed to identify the child.

Three children of True Steel employees per office (Sudbury, Timmins and North Bay) per season are sponsored for sports. In the summer that pays for games like soccer and in the winter to ski or play hockey.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

"We're fortunate, we've got sale reps who have been here for ten years and enjoy what they're doing."

When Whitehead accepted the first Dealer of the Year award, he commented that the award should be presented with the entire staff in the room because it was everyone's hard work and ideas that made the company what it is.

So when True Steel won again the following year, GE Security Pro program director Michael Benedict flew to Sudbury and presented the award to the staff of True Steel personally. The presentation came as a total surprise to Whitehead.

"We put Sudbury on the worldwide map which is astounding," said Whitehead.

True Steel Security has been recognized for its level of excellence in the security industry for several years now and is now known internationally for this, he says.

A member of the Security Pro executive committee, Whitehead was surprised after he missed an annual conference to get several messages from other board members representing larger companies all over the United States expressing their regret at having missed him. He says they wanted advice on a number of fronts, which despite all the recent awards the company has earned, also came as a surprise to the Northern Ontario operator.

www.truesteel.com

By MARIE CLARKE

For Northern Ontario Business
COPYRIGHT 2006 Laurentian Business Publishing, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2006, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Author:Clarke, Marie
Publication:Northern Ontario Business
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:May 1, 2006
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