Batavia firm expands security training to workplaces in effort to combat violence

Fri October 9, 2020

Controlled FORCE provides security services around the country

(Credit – Mark Foster,  Kane County Chronicle, October 2019

BATAVIA – In a world of international terrorism, random mass shootings and workplace violence, it is planning, preparation and training that are the keys to security.

This is the realm of Controlled FORCE, a Batavia firm that provides a broad range of security services.

Headquartered in the historic Challenge Building, Controlled FORCE has trained police and military personnel and developed security plans for federal facilities and nuclear sites.

President and CEO Diana Juarez-Grano of Sugar Grove started the firm in 1997 and gave the company a national, even worldwide, presence.

In the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Controlled FORCE provided pre-deployment training for military police before being sent overseas.

Controlled FORCE has a staff of about a dozen at its Batavia offices and roughly 75 training experts working across the nation.

The firm provides supplemental training to personnel in all branches of the military, the U.S. Department of Defense, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Justice, the FBI and other federal agencies. Mobile training teams are deployed worldwide.

“We’re actually a security solution,” Juarez-Grano said.

The company also employs its own team of guards directly handling security at numerous federal buildings in Virginia, Alabama and Colorado.

Controlled FORCE provides security services around the country

Deputy Director Rob Sarra of Geneva is a U.S. Marine Corps veteran with many years of experience as a police officer. He currently serves part-time with the Maple Park Police Department.

Careful, deliberate and judicious use of force is at the heart of what the company instills in its clients.

“We teach when to engage and when not,” Sarra said. “There are other things that can be done besides pulling the trigger.”

Now, Controlled FORCE is expanding its security blanket to the private, corporate arena, as workplace violence becomes an increasing concern.

“We want to bring past performance to where it is needed,” Juarez-Grano said. “What makes us different is we can transfer our military and law enforcement experience to the civilian world.”

Improving security for a business starts with a physical threat assessment, Sarra said. When Sarra walks into a building, he immediately sees potential problems and threats that most people could never imagine.

Interviews with the management of a commercial business, factory or warehouse are held to identify concerns, and to review personnel policies and procedures.

“Where are you vulnerable?” Sarra said. “There should be an annual review. Threats are constantly changing.”

The business’ insurance company often will pay for the security services Controlled FORCE offers and provides better rates.

For security officers, Controlled FORCE provides training that involves far more than the use of weapons, Sarra said, so that guards do not use their guns out of fear.

“We teach them to be aware of their capabilities and give them a skill set including de-escalation techniques,” Sarra said. “When you’re carrying a weapon, you have a responsibility. What else do you carry?”

The FORCE acronym, for First Official Response in a Critical Environment, points to the firm’s law enforcement and military core competencies, including firearms, K9 and personal security detail training.

Controlled FORCE is located at 335 N. River Street, Suite 200 in Batavia. The telephone number is 630-365-1700 . The website is

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