Giovanni Sergi

Monitoring the Port of Long Beach’s 3,520 acres of land and 4,600 acres of water is no easy task, but Giovanni Sergi has spent years bringing port security into the 21st century. “When I came in 12 years ago, we had 50 cameras. Twenty-five didn’t work,” he said. “We’re up to 700 cameras today and our uptime for those cameras is 98% at any given week.” Sergi is the homeland security stakeholder coordinator in the port’s security division and manages a wide array of security-related projects, from multi-million dollar camera installations throughout the port complex to integrating security systems into new projects. He explained that open ports such as Long Beach – meaning much of its road and waterways are accessible to the general public – make a “boots on the ground” approach to security difficult, which is why the port challenges the security division to keep up with the latest technologies. Sergi also works with outside agencies such as U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the FBI to coordinate security efforts with Long Beach Harbor Patrol and the Long Beach Police Department. Prior to his work with the port, Sergi worked in the security business for more than 18 years in the public sector, including managing security projects for NATO and the Italian Ministry of Defense. However, he said he has more job satisfaction at the port. “I love my job,” he said. “People keep asking me when I’m going to retire. I don’t know if I’m going to retire because I truly enjoy my job.” (Photograph by Brandon Richardson)

Brandon Richardson is a reporter and photojournalist for the Long Beach Post and Long Beach Business Journal.