World's First Exhibit Dedicated to Understanding Terrorism Set to Open
by Jim Kouri, CPP
The Center for Empowered Living and Learning (The CELL) held a reception yesterday in Denver to introduce its inaugural exhibit, entitled "Anyone, Anytime, Anywhere: Understanding the Threat of Terrorism."
The CELL is a non-profit, non-partisan institution dedicated to educating citizens on the most important issue of our time -- terrorism. The exhibit will make available to the public for the first time learning tools that are capable of teaching citizens about the true nature of terrorism and how it affects each and every one of us in our daily lives.
"The CELL is becoming one of the most talked-about institutions to take root in our great city," said Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper. "The exhibit does a great job of addressing and explaining the difficult subject of terrorism, and while it is a serious experience, The CELL allows individuals to educate and ultimately empower themselves in the goal of terrorism prevention."
The keynote speaker at Wednesday's reception was Brian Jenkins, a senior advisor to the RAND Corporation, and an expert in terrorism, counterinsurgency and homeland security. He is a highly-respected author and commentator and was part of The CELL's content development team. Mayor John Hickenlooper and The CELL founder Larry A. Mizel introduced Jenkins to the audience.
"It is our intent that once people experience The CELL exhibit, they will be more engaged and focused on the need for community involvement and preparedness in response to the current ongoing global terrorism threat," said Melanie Pearlman, Executive Director of The CELL. "This is an educational and interactive exhibit that uses state-of-the-art multi-media tools, and was created in consultation with world-renowned terrorism experts and designed by Academy Award-winning artists."
"We are pleased to have introduced the exhibit today in front of many visitors who are here in Denver attending the Democratic National Convention," said Pearlman. "They might not otherwise get the opportunity to explore this complex subject matter in a state-of-the-art facility," Pearlman added. During the past three days of the DNC, The CELL has played host to such dignitaries as Senators Daniel K. Inouye and Jim DeMint, Colorado Governor Bill Ritter, as well as CELL contributor and former Mayor of New York City, Rudy Giuliani.
The CELL also intends to begin working with universities, first-responders and law enforcement officials on programs and outreach that will promote greater awareness and more effective means of combating terrorism. Early efforts have already included co-hosting a seminar with the Naval Post Graduate School on preparedness and response coordination for the Democratic National Convention activities here in Denver for local business and first- responder communities.
The design, concept and production of The CELL and its exhibit began in 2004. It will be open to the public beginning Tuesday, September 2, 2008.
The Center for Empowered Living & Learning is located within the Denver Civic Center Cultural Complex, adjacent to the new Denver Art Museum. For more information, please visit http://www.thecell.org/.
Jim Kouri, CPP is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police. He's former chief at a New York City housing project in Washington Heights nicknamed "Crack City" by reporters covering the drug war in the 1980s. In addition, he served as director of public safety at a New Jersey university and director of security for a number of organizations. He's also served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country. He writes for many police and crime magazines including Chief of Police, Police Times, The Narc Officer, Campus Law Enforcement Journal, and others. He's appeared as on-air commentator for over 100 TV and radio news and talk shows including Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, Fox News, etc. His book Assume The Position is available at Amazon.Com, Booksamillion.com, and can be ordered at local bookstores. Kouri holds a bachelor of science in criminal justice and master of arts in public administration and he's a board certified protection professional.