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Carla Askonas, left, of the Chattanooga Technology Council, presents the Early Innovator Award to Stuart Bostock, president of Security Centers International as Chloe Kaufman looks on.

Stuart Bostock first came to Chattanooga from his native Cayman Islands home to send his son, and later his daughter, to Baylor School.

But the security expert says he quickly fell in love with the area and, when he decided to launch his own business to serve North America with a new mobile safety service, he did so in Chattanooga.

On Wednesday, Chattanooga's tech community returned the favor to Bostock, awarding him and his company, Security Centres International, the Early Innovator Award during this year's Spirit of Innovation luncheon.

"We're really taken aback by the energy, the innovation and the inward investment that is here, and the companies that are coming to Chattanooga make it a great place for us," Bostock said. "We were originally looking at Florida to launch our company into the United States because of its proximity and international shipping. But after coming to Chattanooga, we kept looking for reasons to not come here and we couldn't find any."

Bostock has developed a mobile safety tower to provide security and life-safety services by way of a solar-powered HD video-surveillance technology. The company debuted its Optoguard Ultra CCTV tower at the Riverbend Festival in downtown Chattanooga in June and Bostock said he expects to have 25 to 30 of the towers built by the end of the year to lease to users across North America.

"The innovation is really designed in the capsule and the integration of multiple different surveillance platforms that come together with this equipment," Bostock said. "We see so often in law enforcement or national security field, as well as the commercial construction field, the importance of getting eyes on the ground and data being quickly available. We are able to customize each tower and each capsule specifically for each client's needs."

The towers, which are manufactured by Metalworking Solutions in Chattanooga, are hardened to withstand heavy winds but are designed to have a softer look and blend into the landscape in the sites where they are used to survey a crowd or site and provide real-time data.

Bostock said he is pursuing a patent for the surveillance towers and will soon begin leasing equipment for events in Atlanta and Nashville. The mobile technology will allow event sponsors and law enforcement agencies to deploy tower surveillance for an area without having to erect permanent equipment.

Security Centres International won the Early Innovator Award from the Chattanooga Technology Council known as CHATech. The other finalists for the award were Culture Audio, a new Culture VI noise-canceling headphones product that just went on sale on Amazon last week, and LIT Devices LLC, a device to treat a collapsed lung by isolating the affected lung during emergencies. The LIT product is still being developed for ultimate FDA approval.

Contact Dave Flessner at dflessner@timesfreepress.com or at 757-6340

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