The Children's Institute Blog

Celebrating National Security Officer Appreciation Week With Dave Bolcar

Posted: Sep 22, 2017 by The Children's Institute

Dave Bolcar, a security officer for The Children’s Institute since January 2015, walks his daily rounds inside and outside the Pittsburgh campus five days a week, from 1 to 9 p.m.

He works alongside PlantOps and his fellow security officers, monitoring 16 cameras and 27 zones from his desktop computer screen. He keeps an eye on those entering the main building.

And, when he works a weekend shift, he takes the lead on communications in the event of a fire or building alarm.

“I tell them, ‘I protect the integrity of the patients, the building, the volunteers and staff – trying to keep the bad people out,’” Dave said.

But something else gets him out of bed in the morning and driving 30 miles from his Westmoreland County home to The Children’s Institute’s Squirrel Hill campus.

“It’s the kids – seeing them come in and seeing the progress they make,” Dave said. “You see them coming in a wheelchair and, the next week, they’re on crutches. It’s all about that progress.”

Dave, who we are profiling today as part of National Security Officer Appreciation Week, is often the first person you see when entering our Shady Avenue entrance, and he said he enjoys interacting with the kids – a bug he caught from his five-year-old son.

“I’m a very simple person,” Dave said. “I’d much rather spend a night at home with my family than go out.”

When he works – he’s been a security officer for seven years, previously at a St. Barnabus care home – he likes to keep busy, helping people sift through to the lost and found, jump-starting stalled patient cars, or tending to pedestrians who might fall on the sidewalk. When emergencies occur, he helps usher in emergency medical services. And, when he’s working nights and a behavioral health admission comes in, “you try to make the transition as easy as possible for them.”

“For the most part, it’s quiet,” he said, “but when a condition or safety support is called, we respond appropriately, using policy as a set of guidelines”

Take a moment today to thank Dave for his service and, while you’re at it, thank our other security officers, too. They are: Anna Forrester, Nick Bagnato, Jr., Franck Dakaud, and Phileasha “Phe” Jemison.

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