In this episode of the CHDS Master’s Thesis Series, Heather Issvoran interviews Bruno Dias, Director of Safety, Security, and Threat Management for the Mansfield Independent School District on his thesis, “Blip on the radar; school safety synergy through early warning and information sharing.”
Bruno Dias’ thesis abstract: “The traditional response to school violence by legislators and school districts has been mostly reactive. Scholars and existing research in the field of school safety and security recommend a critical safety and security initiative that is proactive and works to prevent violence by identifying concerns early on through behavioral threat assessment practices. This thesis applied a multi-step qualitative and comparative policy analysis framework that evaluated existing opportunities to increase the safety and security posture of schools. This study evaluated strengths and weaknesses in school safety and security by drawing lessons from past incidents of school violence in the United States, assembling contributing factors to inaction, comparing another country’s holistic approach to targeted violence, and evaluating gaps in existing school safety legislation. This thesis used scholarly research to make school safety and security recommendations at the federal, state, and local levels—for legislators, public safety professionals, school district leadership, and particularly, school safety and security professionals in Texas. This thesis found that for behavioral threat assessment and management to be an effective violence prevention strategy, school officials and legislators ought to develop programs and implement training and measurement tools that focus on efficacy rather than compliance or broad measures that consequentially affect children who do not pose a threat.”
Biography: Bruno Dias is the Director of Safety, Security and Threat Management for Mansfield ISD. He is responsible for life-safety functions, emergency management, and threat assessment for the school district. Bruno is a board member of the Texas Chapter or the Association of Threat Assessment Professionals and he is a member of the ASIS National School Safety Council. Bruno is a graduate of the FBI National academy, he holds B.S., M.S. degrees in criminal justice, and an M.A. from the Naval Postgraduate School Homeland Defense and Security program. Before working for school districts, Bruno managed corporate security investigations for a Fortune 10 company in the U.S. and Canada.
Bruno is a law enforcement veteran, and he retired at the rank of Commander. During his law enforcement career, Bruno was awarded a Medal of Valor and received multiple awards, including distinguished service awards for investigating violent crimes, gangs and domestic violence incidents. He held various assignments, including patrol, investigations, narcotics, regional SWAT Commander, and Homeland Security Task Force Officer. Bruno led a regional HIDTA violent crimes task force comprised of local, state, and federal law enforcement officials. Bruno’s task force work resulted in a significant reduction in gang violence on the Monterey Peninsula, and in 2014 he received the Northern California HIDTA’s prestigious Outstanding Commander Award.