The Security Institute announces new co-chairs for Counter-Terrorism Special Interest Group
17 February 2021
STEVEN MCGRATH MSyI and Andrew Donaldson MSyI will co-chair The Security Institute’s dedicated Counter-Terrorism Special Interest Group. Both security professionals harbour extensive experience within the field of counter-terrorism and are thought leaders in this area.
As the new co-chairs of the Counter-Terrorism Special Interest Group, McGrath (pictured, bottom right) and Donaldson (pictured, right) will now drive forward the group’s aim of sharing information and Best Practice in the discipline of counter-terrorism for the benefit of all of The Security Institute’s members as well as the wider security community.
McGrath is the head of information capability and engagement at the National Counter-Terrorism Security Office (NaCTSO). In this role, he’s responsible for NaCTSO’s engagement with businesses and the implementation of the Information Sharing Platform.
In addition, as the joint chair of the Protect and Prepare Business Information Exchange, McGrath oversees projects delivered jointly by NaCTSO and the business community as well as the cascade of advice and guidance offered across a national network of business and industry sectors.
Donaldson is head of security at Real Estate Management (UK) Ltd where he’s directly responsible for overall crisis management and security operations across a business portfolio that includes The Shard and other prime London real estate. Prior to this, Donaldson enjoyed a distinguished career in international counter-terrorism, including representing British interests in the USA and Asia.
Collaboration with Government
Under their leadership, the Counter-Terrorism Special Interest Group will collaborate closely with Government specialists who are leading the nation’s counter-terrorism efforts.
The Counter-Terrorism Special Interest Group is ideally placed to support The Security Institute’s contribution and response to the Protect Duty consultation by directly engaging with a broad range of stakeholders and encouraging responses to the consultation questions. This will help to ensure that security professionals within the sector can be involved in the process and resolve any potential concerns before new protective security legislation is then passed.
Speaking about his new pro bono role, Donaldson explained: “Counter-terrorism isn’t just a job for the police and MI5. The Security Institute is well placed to not only keep people safe on a day-to-day basis, but also influence the longer-term strategy and decisions that need to be made. With the Protect Duty consultation, we have an opportunity to inform Government of how the private sector can successfully manage and implement security regulations.”
McGrath added: “We have an opportunity to provide a voice for the industry to shape not only the advice and guidance provided to business and industry, but also the way in which it’s delivered. Ensuring collaboration, articulating our thoughts accurately and in a timely fashion and thinking about security in the longer-term are my initial goals for the Counter-Terrorism Special Interest Group.”
The work of the Counter-Terrorism Special Interest Group and its new co-chairs will be supported by a sponsor from The Security Institute’s Board of Directors, namely vice-chair Jonathan Schulten FSyI.
Schulten has vast experience of working within counter-terrorism having served as director, SME and lead assessor on the National Counter-Terrorism Security Co’ordinators Course within the College of Policing. More recently, he has served in senior security and business resilience roles within the private sector.
Speaking about the Counter-Terrorism Special Interest Group, Schulten observed: “Comprising nearly 200 security professionals, the Counter-Terrorism Special Interest Group is strongly supported by the Institute’s membership. I welcome Steve and Andy’s appointments as the new co-chairs. They’re both vastly experienced and very well connected within the counter-terrorism community, bringing with them knowledge of Government agencies, intelligence, public and private sector organisations and terrorism risk insurance alike. I very much look forward to collaborating with them and to the invaluable contribution the Counter-Terrorism Special Interest Group will make to the Institute’s response relating to the Protect Duty consultation process.”
*Led by the Counter-Terrorism Special Interest Group, the Institute is hosting a webinar focused on The Protect Duty Consultation. This will run at 11.00 am on Monday 22 February and is an exclusive opportunity to hear from a Home Office policy advisor regarding the launch of the consultation process and how it will work in practice. Places can be booked online at: https://event.bookitbee.com/31567/220221-webinar-the-protect-duty-consultation