Client’s Challenge: The Chicago NATO Host Committee Asks Hillard Heintze for Help

On May 20-21, 2012, the NATO 2012 Summit was held in Chicago, Illinois.  A few months earlier, the 2012 Chicago NATO Host Committee engaged Hillard Heintze as a trusted security advisor to address a wide spectrum of Summit-related issues spanning emergency preparedness, security, communications and operational matters between the City and the Chicago business community.

Our Solution: Serving as a Trusted Security Advisor

On May 20-21, 2012, the NATO 2012 Summit was held in Chicago, Illinois.  A few months earlier, the 2012 Chicago NATO Host Committee engaged Hillard Heintze as a trusted security advisor to address a wide spectrum of Summit-related issues spanning emergency preparedness, security, communications and operational matters between the City and the Chicago business community.

Impact on the Client: A New Model of Pre-Event Liaison with the Business Community

In addition to helping the City reduce the cost of insurance for the Summit,  Chicago’s approach to the NATO 2012 Summit – to the surprise of media outlets across the country – set many new best practice thresholds.  The City has now become a model in areas such as pre-event liaison with the business community; real-time, security-related communications during the proceedings; and policing large protests with acute attention to First Amendment rights and a restrained approach to the use of force.

Unplugged: The Project Manager's Post-Engagement Perspective

“To understand the significance of Chicago’s success during this Summit, you have to consider the potential disruptive power of such an event to a city’s economic engine.

“When businesses have no visibility into the security environment – protester locations and actions, accurate information sources, City responses – they tend to react to rumors and hearsay.  Which can lead to drastic, costly actions that cripple business operations for up to several weeks.  Like closing offices, deferring orders and shipments, and postponing events.

“Chicago delivered a win here – in ways that will be emulated by other cities here in the United States and worldwide in addressing future Summits.”

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