Ryan Ramczyk’s Pee Wee Football Years

Ryan Ramczyk stands 6’6” and weighs 311 pounds. He just got drafted out of the University of Wisconsin in the first round of the NFL draft by the New Orleans Saints.


We knew Ryan when he was a tad smaller. Years ago, probably when Ryan was still trying to figure out what sport he liked best, H&S Protection was proud to sponsor a Stevens Point, WI Pee Wee football team. Ryan played for the team we sponsored, and it’s awesome to see he’s progressed into a young man taking his skills to the highest level.

At H&S, we believe in personal growth and development, helping our technicians, sales, operations and service personnel and customer response people develop through training and team support. Ryan didn’t get to the University of Wisconsin or the Saints without a lot of sweat equity. He worked hard to get to the next level. We work hard, too, and respect others who take a similar path.


Ryan went to Stevens Point Area High School. He didn’t start college at the University of Wisconsin, instead taking a couple of other steps before landing at UW-Stevens Point, an NCAA Division III school, where he began his college football career. But he realized he could take his skills beyond that and set his sights on DI at UW. He believed in himself and made a remarkable DI career happen.


H&S Protection is proud to have been able to watch and help in one small part of Ryan’s progression to where he is today. People, like businesses, don’t just happen. They take time to reach higher levels. We believe in continuing to develop our business to serve customers to the best of our ability, just like Ryan has done everything he can to the best of his abilities.
We wish Ryan Ramczyk well in the NFL.

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Matt Hills Finds “Perfect Fit” at H&S Protection

Matt Hills found his perfect fit at H&S Protection. As an installer hired this past September, Hills was looking for a position where he could take on a diverse set of duties, be rewarded for initiative and use all his skills.

matt hills

When a hiring agency got in touch with Matt after his previous jobs as a fork lift operator and working in manufacturing plants didn’t yield the hours or activities, he sought, he jumped at H&S. “The job description talked about construction wiring and technical smarts. It fit me to a tee. I love tech stuff, and it seemed like a perfect fit,” he said.


He’d been looking for full-time work and had been bored in previous jobs, hoping also to find a position that appreciated him as a hard worker, something he felt hadn’t occurred over the past few years. At age 24, Matt is now settling in with H&S and with his girlfriend Gina, as they look for a place to live together.


“I like that there is something different every day,” Matt said about what he enjoys in his job. “It’s not the same thing every day – like pulling a lever in a plant. It’s fantastic because it’s not factory work, which I’ve done in the past. I get to use my brain instead of just doing what’s expected.”


Matt enjoys the full H&S experience. “H&S treats you like a person, not a number. Mike Horgan (co-owner, along with Steve Garritson, and in charge of the H&S office in Stevens Point, where Matt works out of) is a REAL person. We’re a team, family, close knit. Employees are not a number.”


Hills also appreciates the goal of H&S – protecting people and property. “We keep people safe and give them peace of mind. I go home at night and think to myself, ‘I did good things today’.”


When not installing or servicing alarm systems, video cameras, cable, access control equipment, Hills continues to enjoy working on computers when he is home. He also likes video gaming and describes himself as a “technofile,” which is “why I latched onto networking in the job. It’s a hobby of mine.” He also enjoys hanging out with friends and playing tennis.


“This is the best job I’ve ever had,” Matt enthused. “Customers know that they can rely on us as professionals to do a good job. I see firsthand how some other companies don’t give a job the focus and detail it requires. We’re better than the local competitors. I see it firsthand on my installations when I look at the work other companies have done that we have to fix,” he emphasized.

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The Zen Zones of Matt Ballantyne

Matt Ballantyne comes to H&S Protection as a master of two Zen zones: working and fixing things around his house and garage and on the basketball court. He’s hoping to add a third – taking his skill in building and fixing things around his house, and dovetailing that with his new technician position for H&S. “The repair work around the house I prefer to do myself if I can,” he said.


Joining H&S in January after working in the food industry off and on since he was 13, Matt has already picked up a lot on the job. “I’ve learned a lot. I’ve always been interested in audiovisual technology. My dad was a master electrician and it’s been fun learning about the stuff he did his whole life. If I have questions, I’ve been able to ask him what to do,” Matt observed.


Matt also did an 8-and-a-half-9 year stint in the prison industry as a guard, until he was assaulted. “I loved everything about the job, but after I had my jaw and orbital bone broken, I couldn’t pass the psych evaluation test afterwards,” he said. After the assault incident, prison employees are given mandatory 90 days off, then must pass the evaluation to return to their job.


Beyond his work in the prison, Ballantyne was unaware of the security industry. “I looked up H&S on the Internet and they had a high reputation in the area. I was looking for something where I could take care of my family and get on a more regular schedule,” he said. His restaurant position had erratic hours and Ballantyne is happy now to be on a consistent schedule to spend time with his family.

Matt is married to his wife Janelle, and they have a son Xavier (4) and a daughter on the way. “Taking care of my family is big for me,” he said.


He likes Wisconsin, but misses family in North Dakota and Utah. Until moving to SE Wisconsin to help with his in-laws, Ballantyne spent most of his life in North Dakota. He wrestled through high school and at Ricks College, Rexburg, ID (currently BYU-Idaho).


“At the Christmas party when I served H&S, I talked with Steve (Garritson) and Nancy (DeSandre), and let them know I was looking for more family time. Steve asked, “Are you good with your hands?’ I told him yes, and it was history after that.”
“I didn’t know anything about H&S at the time, but have seen a high level of professionalism since joining the team,” Matt added.


Matt loves basketball, playing six days a week at churches in the area surrounding Oconomowoc. He also used to referee kids basketball games.


“The garage and basketball court are my two little zen zones,” Matt smiled. H&S sees a third Zen zone as Matt brings his skills to security projects around SE Wisconsin. H&S welcomes Matt to the team.

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H&S Snapshot Helps in Capture of Waukesha Bank Robber

A snapshot of an H&S Protection video clip helped lead to the apprehension of a Waukesha, WI bank robber this week. The clip was pulled from a video system recently upgraded for the bank by H&S. Last week, H&S helped publicize the robbery in our blog and through social media channels, to help police in their efforts to capture the criminal. You can read more on the previous story here. Below is the mug shot, which you can compare with the image we pulled.


H&S works closely with banks and other clients to ensure technology is regularly assessed and upgraded. In this case, the bank’s cameras were analog. Given the outdated nature of analog technology, H&S assessed, recommended, then installed newer digital cameras that improved the quality and clarity of the images captured during the event. This allowed us to pull a high resolution photo clip from the video and share that with law enforcement.


H&S owners Steve Garritson and Mike Horgan had this to say: “One of the major reasons we got into the security business and enjoy the work we do is our ability to help businesses and homeowners protect their assets, employees and families. To do that well, we regularly look at new technologies available from manufacturers and what would make the best sense for our customers’ needs.”


“For banks, there is a strong need for the most up-to-date camera quality. We meet regularly with the banks we service, and provide information to them to ensure the best protection possible.”


“In this case, we couldn’t be prouder of how things turned out, and that we were able to do our part to help local law enforcement. Sharing the photo clip is an added service we can provide to help protect local businesses and homes in the communities we serve throughout Southeast and Central Wisconsin,” they said.

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Bank Robbery Shows Importance of Digital Cameras

No one wants to see crime. But sometimes good things result from a criminal act.


Just recently, a bank in Waukesha, WI was robbed. The thief’s image was caught on video and a picture pulled from the clip. That video was ours. You can see the picture here.


The image demonstrates the importance of “digital” cameras. Older cameras in businesses could still be using analog technology. With updated digital cameras, there is much higher resolution, hence an enhanced image. That allowed H&S Protection to reproduce a still image from the video clip to help Waukesha police in their search for the suspect.


We hate crime. But our job is to help deter, and sometimes aid in the apprehension of criminals who have broken into businesses.


In this case, it was good that our customer had recently installed new digital cameras. It made a big difference in terms of the clarity of images captured from the robbery. Sometimes good things follow from a bad event. We’ll continue to support the police in their hunt for this individual.


When the holdup alarm was sent to our monitoring center, we were on the line with Waukesha police in 14 seconds. That’s service we’re proud of.

We also follow up with customers in these situations. Every time we get an alarm, we look into it the next day, contacting the customer involved. We work hard to get it right, follow-up and deliver security systems that keep getting better.

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Why We Train

Professional sports officials, like those officiating the NFL or NBA, for example, get feedback on their performance after every game. They prepare and train even during the off-season. That’s what makes them the best, and helps them execute the rules instantaneously with a high degree of success on a consistent basis.


H&S Protection takes a similar approach with our training. We provide outside courses for our employees. We send them to CEU (Continuing Education) classes so they can learn the newest installation techniques, equipment and standards. We like to see our employees continuously updated and refreshed so they deliver the best service to our customers.

Recently we sent Dave Kwasinski and Dave Simon, two of our newer employees, to a CEU class put on by the Electronic Security Association (ESA), the national association supporting our industry. ESA takes best practices and puts them together to ensure superior training is available for those entering the electronic security industry. Dave and Dave are not technicians. They work in business development. But it’s still important to us that they be informed and knowledgeable on the systems they sell. That makes them better able to explain services to our customers and answer customer questions, so we put together the types of security packages that best meet our customers’ needs. We deliver.


The vendors who sell to us also put together training sessions for our staff so that we understand the important features of new technology and what it means to the different types of clients we serve. That keeps us on our toes.


Our people aren’t referees in front of huge television audiences, but they are well-trained professionals in front a hugely important audience – customers with needs to protect their homes, businesses and assets. For H&S employees to be the best, we keep the high level training coming. You can count on us for that.

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Ensure Your Connectivity

Ensure data connectivity so your security system delivers its signal quickly and effectively. Every security system sends an electronic signal when the system is triggered. Whether you have a wired or wireless system, that message must get routed through the electronic network to ensure the monitoring center immediately finds out there is an issue in your home or business.


If you have recently switched your home or Internet provider, there could be a loss of that connectivity. Alarm and video surveillance systems use supportive services to ensure effective connections. Computer networks, WiFi, land telephone lines, Internet and cell phones are all used for alarm monitoring, interactive/smart home services and video monitoring.


BEFORE you make any changes to your Internet, phone, network or related service or providers, contact H&S Protection. We will work closely with you to determine if any changes you are considering may affect your service.


Please check with us before you make any of these changes. They may cause unintended data transmission problems. No one wants that. And, even an unintended malfunction may require a service call. Prevent that, and call H&S Protection first. We’re here to help and head off issues before they become problems.

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Vet and Animal Hospital Protection

If you are a veterinarian or work at an animal hospital, you face unique security challenges. First, there are the animals themselves. If something unforeseen happens to an animal in your care, it is always good to have video coverage for insurance backup. That means having security cameras installed strategically throughout your facility.


040129-N-8937A-023 U.S. Fleet Activities Sasebo, Japan (Jan. 29, 2004) – Army Capt. Sandi Parriott conducts a routine spaying procedure on a DOD family housecat. Capt. Parriott is assigned to the Japan District Veterinarian Command, Sasebo, Japan. U.S. Navy photo by PhotographerÕs Mate 3rd Class Ian W. Anderson. (RELEASED)

That video footage not only protects you in case one of the animals is hurt, but also helps identify if another animal (or employee) mistreated the pet. The huge majority of people who work for vets or animal hospitals care deeply about the pets. But that’s not 100 percent of the employees. And it only takes one angry, disgruntled or emotionally tight individual to do some harm to your business and reputation.


A second unique need for vets and animal hospitals to consider is to protect pharmaceuticals on-site. Sadly, drug addicts seek out weakened security buildings, and a vet business or animal hospital can be perceived that way. Drugs used to treat animals are targets for both human use and resale by addicts. Access control, video, intercom systems, motion sensors, window breaks and video doorbells are all options useful to protect these facilities from forced entry.


Finally, don’t forget about your employees and your parking lot. There are many crimes of opportunity that occur when we happen to look away. Even if you live or work in a “safe” neighborhood, it doesn’t mean temptation won’t occasionally strike a passer-by to punch in a window to grab a purse or reach in an open car window to lift a smart phone. Protecting your parking lot with video coverage is a good idea. Not only does it give peace-of-mind to your customers and employees, but it also provides you video footage if something happens to an animal in your parking lot and you need to access it later.


At H&S, we service many businesses, and pride ourselves on coverage for these types of facilities. Give us a call and let us know what concerns you have when it comes to security protection. We’re here to listen, so we can design, install and monitor what works best for you.

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Don’t Buy Cheap

Everyone wants to get a good deal when they make a purchase. You look at options, compare prices, service, products, and if all things are equal, you go with the lower price. All things are not created equal though.

This came home to us recently. We worked closely with a customer on a fairly involved security project. We outlined what we could do, along with the technology we’d deploy. It was not a simple system we planned to install and we chose equipment that we knew was high quality and got the job done right.


We lost the bid. The customer went with a significantly lower-priced security provider, thinking he would get a great deal. He found out that wasn’t the case.


After installation began, we received a call from the prospective client. He was unhappy. The security company he’d hired was not doing the job he wanted. The installation and equipment weren’t up to snuff. He wanted to bring us in to clean up the mess.


We’re back working with this customer, doing our best to get the project online and to his specifications. We’re not saying H&S Protection is the best company you’re ever going to find in the security business. What we hope you take from this story is to research the security company you hire. Ask around. See what they’ve done for other clients. Less expensive is seldom the BEST choice. There are many variables to consider when choosing a security company for your business or home.


H&S works extremely hard at listening and helping you figure out what the best options are to protect your assets, employees, family, home or business. Give us a call.

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When Crime Happens Elsewhere

The tendency of most people is to breathe a bit more easily when they read on the Internet or watch the television news and see a crime event not near where they live. It’s human nature to think you are more protected when something bad occurs miles away. At H&S Protection, we understand that feeling. But we urge you to consider a few other points to ensure your business or home is most effectively protected.


Recently, in a very small section of the Milwaukee metro area that we service, there was wanton destruction of several businesses. If you lived close to that area, your natural inclination was most likely fear for your home or business. If you’ve been in a similar situation, you may have taken steps to further secure your possessions.


During this recent bout, we received information that during the hub bub, several attempted break-ins occurred elsewhere in the city. Informed burglars use this tactic. When the police are occupied with a visible situation that takes extra manpower, that leaves other areas of the city vulnerable.


Our point in all this is to encourage you to remain vigilant about your safety and security if an area serviced by your police requires an extra expenditure of resources. That could mean the bad guys are looking for other vulnerabilities.

If you run a business, check your alarm. Make sure your cameras operate effectively. Talk to your employees about taking extra precautions.

If you’re a homeowner, communicate with your neighbors. Lock your doors. Turn on extra lights. Make sure your alarm system is armed and operating.
The best defense is preparation.  H&S urges you to stay informed and aware.

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