UCL’s Security Manager Oliver Curran Named Top Security Influencer in England

14 September 2021

Recognised by a leading industry body for security services and fire safety, Oliver Curran has been instrumental in developing UCL’s security service and working with global partners.

Deputy Security Manager Ollie Curran smiles to the camera in front of the North-West Building, Main Quad, UCL

IFSEC (International Fire Security and Exhibition and Conference) have ranked Oliver, known as ‘Ollie’ to his colleagues, as the most influential frontline professional in England due to his professional and personal involvement across the sector. Clearly showing his passion for security, not only does Ollie work at UCL, he is also a board member of the UK Security Commonwealth (SyCom), and the Vice-Chair of Association of University Chief Security Officers (AUCSO) to which he was appointed this year

IFSEC’s evaluation of Ollie’s personal influence was based on a combination of his voluntary roles at the SyCom and AUCSO and personal impact in his role at UCL. This earned him a top 10 ranking for influence across the security industry globally, placed 9th overall.

Responding to the news Ollie’s manager Mark West said, “Ollie has always been passionate about the service that the Security Department provides to its customers. He looks at the wider approach used in universities across the country, to ensure we use best practice here at UCL. Ollie always said that he undertakes these extra activities at AUCSO and SyCom in order that UCL benefits from the outcomes. We will be introducing the app SafeZone this year to improve life on Campus as a result of his best practice research. All of his hard work is now being noticed by the wider industry experts such as IFSEC and we are very proud that he is a dedicated member of the UCL Security Team.”

Ollie has worked for UCL for thirteen years, having joined from a job in security services for corporate businesses where he began his career in security as a security officer.

Alongside the ranking, IFSEC noted how highly UCL values security within the institution, with over 300 security staff in position across the campus’ 250 buildings. UCL leadership have recognised the impact of security staff in particular this year through the One UCL awards, with Ollie Curran winning ‘Outstanding Ways of Working’ and his colleague, Donatus Onyido, winning ‘Community Spirit’, for their outstanding contributions in 2021. Many security staff work on a dedicated basis within a department or specific building, becoming a trusted part of daily life on site. In addition to supporting emergency call response, and monitoring for dangerous behaviour, they are often the welcoming face of UCL being the first member of UCL to greet visitors.

Speaking during a research trip to Ireland to visit Universities in Dublin and National University of Ireland, Galway, Ollie spoke about how he takes on voluntary roles to help keep UCL’s security service at a high level “I'm always looking to see what I can do differently, what we can collectively improve. I take the view that every single university will do something better than any other university. We want to continue to give staff and students the best service we can and introducing SafeZone is a part of that. My roles at AUCSO and the Security Commonwealth enable me to go out and speaking to industry experts and bring the best ideas back to UCL. I do this because I think it's the right thing to do so that our team can continue to keep the UCL community safe”.

Duncan Palmer, Director of Campus and Accommodation Services commented,  “It’s tremendous to see Ollie getting the acknowledgement he deserves for his hard work. We take the security of everyone at UCL, staff and students very seriously. The security team are an essential part of the range of safety services at UCL that include fire safety, waste management and building maintenance. Having leaders like Ollie who are proactively preparing for challenges and looking out for opportunities to improve our service will keep standards at UCL high.”