A little known fact in the supplement industry is that Kelly Conklin, VP of ProSource Performance Products (and also Xenadrine and Supreme Protein Bar until they sold those companies) was a police officer in his prior life. At the age of 19, Kelly became a police officer in Toms River, NJ. Having spent many years on patrol, and on the Emergency Services Unit (their SWAT) where he was the “Ram Man”, he had a stellar career in law enforcement. He had a passion for helping, and protecting people.
Conklin then took an early retirement from police work to devote all his time to ProSource––after working for both ProSource and being a full-time police officer at the same time for several years. Then, a few years back, when many shootings in places of worship and other locations around the country came to the forefront, Kelly’s innate protective nature started burning again. He decided to take action and start an armed security agency called Superior Protection Professionals.
What started out as a “side gig” turned into something he didn’t expect. It started taking off. As it was growing and required Kelly to dedicate more time, his boss and best friend to this day, Bob Chinery, encouraged him to work to really grow the new company because so many people were being positively impacted by it. Now, with ProSource still thriving, Kelly had hesitations about “semi-retiring” to pursue the new venture. But Kelly told us that Bob assured him that the highly qualified staff at ProSource (most of which have been there for over two decades) would continue to run, and grow the company. He also has contact with Bob daily and if anything comes up where he’s needed, he steps back in to help. So with that assurance, Kelly started devoting more time to his new company.
Kelly has been an integral part of the supplement industry for almost 25 years, helping to launch and grow products such as Xenadrine, Supreme Protein, and the high quality premium ProSource brand products. We recently decided to catch up with him and see how things are going. We had an opportunity to sit with him and do a little Q&A session. It was great to hear from him again and as you will see from our interview, things are going well.
Before we get into the Q&A, let’s look at some of the happenings that prompted Kelly to do what he’s doing.
In recent years, our country has seen an uptick of horrific attacks on locations such as schools, synagogues, churches, movie theaters, shopping centers, office buildings, and other locations considered “soft targets”. This can be attributed to many things such as an increase in drug use, violence and radicalization being promoted on the internet, video games, and unfortunately ongoing nationwide chaos. With people being harassed, and even assaulted and killed because of their religion, beliefs, color, ethnicity, or any other reason, the need for armed security has become all the more necessary.
MJ: Hi Kelly. After all these years knowing you as the VP of ProSource, it’s quite the departure talking to you about anything other than breakthrough supplements you were always involved with. I want to thank you for taking the time out of your busy day to sit down with us. After doing some research and talking to some people outside the industry we found out a lot about how your guards are so much more professional and better trained than other security companies, so we wanted to hear from you exactly what makes you and your company stand out from the rest. Let’s start with how long your company has been in business and why did you start your company?
KC: Thank you for the opportunity. I very much appreciate it. In recent years it seems mass shootings have dominated the news coverage. Unfortunately, common targets of these shootings have been what are called “soft targets” such as schools, places of worship, malls, office buildings and more. So over the last couple years, my innate protective nature started stirring again. I felt I needed to do something to help people and hopefully prevent further tragedies.
Back in the spring of 2019, I decided to take action and start Superior Protection Professionals and bring in my son, Kelly Jr., who is the VP of our company to help me with operations and also stand post at our accounts. We are licensed in all of New Jersey and are fully insured and bonded. We employ retired police officers, state troopers and federal law enforcement agents and all of us are armed. I wanted to make sure that every SPP guard we hire is highly trained, highly skilled, and a highly capable professional. (Most of our guys spent time on their SWAT teams while employed as police officers). Also, and extremely important, EVERY one of our guards CARES!
MJ: It’s very inspiring to hear someone speak with so much passion. We remember that about you from how passionate you were with ProSource, Xenadrine and Supreme Protein. Now, we heard about your guards being so much “different” then guards from other companies, so tell us why that is.
KC: I wanted to make sure if I was going to start my company, I was going to do it right. I wanted to deliver the very best product (like the premium ProSource brand supplements continue to do www.prosource.net) to our customers to ensure that in the event one of these shooters decides to target one of our locations, my guards, who are extremely well trained and highly capable professionals, are able to neutralize any threat that presents itself, therefore protecting many innocent lives. It’s all about keeping the good people safe from the bad people with the best possible personnel. And, again, all my guards CARE!
MJ: Many times when I’m out and about, I see guards but they are not carrying a gun. We can’t figure out why they use unarmed guards. Can you shed some light on that for us?
KC: Let me start by saying that I respect anyone who is put in a position to protect innocent people, period. That being said, I want to make sure that any guard put in that position is capable, and qualified, to repel or neutralize any attack. Unarmed guards are not fully capable of protecting innocent lives. The way I like to say it, which is pretty blunt but it is what it is, is if something horrible were to happen, the person who was in charge of the facility where the incident happens needs to ask themselves if they did everything possible to prevent the tragedy. If they didn’t have ARMED guards on site, then the answer is NO. Unarmed guards are cheaper than armed guards, but the price of lost lives FAR exceeds any dollar amount spent on qualified armed guards. Security is NOT one of those places you look at to cut costs!
MJ: It’s clear you are passionate about what you’re doing. Where does this passion come from?
KC: I have always had an innate passion for keeping good, innocent people safe from those with bad intentions. So, I guess it’s just built into me. Now, we focus on various locations, but here’s one good example of how people think and how that way of thinking needs to change. I recently stopped by a school and the children, without hesitation, opened the UNLOCKED door for me and directed me to the principal’s office. I told the kids that “I’m a stranger to them so please go get an adult while I wait outside”. Had I been someone intending to cause harm to those young children the result could have been catastrophic.
My point here is these kids were NOT taught to NOT open the door! The staff was NOT taught to keep entry doors secured! And, if there was a real shooter there was NO ONE to stop the attack! In other words, NO armed guard. In today’s world ARMED guards are necessary, period!. Now, had my company been tasked with securing that facility we would have had the students and staff educated on safety procedures, and had a guard on site to deter, or neutralize any threat.
The “old school” way of thinking “it always happens to the other guy” needs to be updated. Think about it, YOU are the “other guy” to that “other guy”!
It’s this type of thinking that keeps that passion burning to get out there and keep people safe!
MJ: All great stuff! Now it’s clear your company isn’t like all the others.. How can our readers reach you if they need quality armed guards in New Jersey?
KC: I can be reached on my cell at 908-783-1939 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. I am available any day of the week, anytime, to sit down and discuss security. Thank you for the opportunity for this interview.
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