When Greater Columbus Convention Center Public Safety Manager Marc Dickson (at right) retires today, Jan. 20, the facility staff will say farewell to its primary lifesaver.
Dickson has conducted a variety of training programs during his tenure at the venue, but is perhaps best known for being a certified American Red Cross instructor teaching and recertifying more than 1,000 registrants in basic CPR and First Aid techniques during a 13-year period.
“There have been at least four people here that the staff resuscitated, and they all lived,” Dickson said.
“As a popular facility hosting more than 350 events and 2.5 million people annually, the guest experience and guest safety are of paramount importance to us. As a result, every new associate is offered training to become a Certified Tourism Ambassador and every full-time employee is certified in CPR,” said GCCC General Manager John Page.
“We were fortunate that Marc’s background enabled him to directly train our staff and others in the community in these lifesaving skills,” added GCCC Assistant General Manager Ryan Thorpe.
Originally hired as a first shift security supervisor in 1993, Dickson then served as director of security for the Value City Arena/Jerome Schottenstein Center from 1999 until just after 9/11 when he was recruited to return to the GCCC in his current role.
A Vietnam veteran, Dickson served as an agent in the United States Air Force Office of Special Investigations and is a retired reserve police lieutenant working with 30 officers in the Reynoldsburg Police Department. He has devoted decades of his career to law enforcement and public safety, including additional roles at Safelite Auto Glass, J C Penney and The Limited. He is the author of two books available via Amazon — a biography and a mystery — and is writing a third.
“I’m a workaholic and I’ve been public service-oriented for the last 50 years,” Dickson said. “It’s going to take me awhile to adjust to being a full-time husband, father and grandfather.”
The Greater Columbus Convention Center, located in downtown Columbus, hosted an estimated 2.5 million visitors in 2016. The facility is owned by the Franklin County Convention Facilities Authority and is managed by SMG.
Founded in 1977, SMG provides management services to more than 240 public assembly facilities including convention and exhibition centers, arenas, stadiums, theaters, performing arts centers, equestrian facilities, science centers and a variety of other venues. With facilities across the globe, SMG manages more than 15 million square feet of exhibition space and more than 1.5 million sports and entertainment seats.
Visit www.columbusconventions.com for more information.