Making the community feel comfortable and safe
If you thought Texas was just full of Texans or transplants from the West and Southwest, think again. S.E.A.L. Security Sergeant Jesus Quiñones hails from the Bronx, N.Y., where he grew up on 193rd Street, a block from Fordham University. The area was his home for 35 years.
After working in New York City, Quiñones pursued work as an HVAC contractor in Flagler County in Florida. In need of a change of scenery, he then relocated to Texas, continuing HVAC work in the construction industry in Mission until injuring his knee in a workplace accident.
That incident made him rethink construction work and brought him to Houston in 2015. Quiñones recalled his work as a bouncer for several nightclubs in his 20s and saw similarities in the skills needed for private security.
A change of pace
Coming to Houston was eye opening in terms of experiencing a different pace. “New York is a very fast pace compared to Houston,” said Quiñones. “Everything is faster there – people, work, business, lifestyle. At times, I must remind myself to slow down.” An opportunity with Patriot Security came along, which then led to S.E.A.L. where he began working patrols in apartment communities in other management districts.
When S.E.A.L. was added to the Westchase District Patrol in 2021, Quiñones was assigned to the area with his K-9 officer Cato. He was immediately impressed with how the District had a different approach. “The partnership with Houston Police Department and Westchase District is a huge plus,” said Quiñones. “It benefits our work. If we need a police report, we contact an HPD officer with the patrol and it is taken care of right away. This partnership forms an effective approach to public safety. I can attest that in other parts of the city where I have patrolled, this doesn’t exist. It’s much better when HPD is involved in reports and cases.”
Officer in the Q
The interaction with HPD has also given Quiñones another perspective. He understood police work from his aunt and Godmother who were officers in New York City. “The laws are totally different in Texas than in New York,” said Quiñones. At S.E.A.L., Quiñones shortened his name to ‘Q’ to help his colleagues who struggled to pronounce his last name. “I made it easy for them and said, ‘just call me Q,’” said Quiñones.
Quiñones is overwhelmed by the positive reception he receives from constituents in the District. “The community in Westchase District has been great to serve,” said Quiñones. “Wherever I meet people – whether at businesses or apartment communities – there’s a real sense of appreciation that we responded to their call and are available 24/7. They are really excited to see us and want to keep us on the property to learn more about how we patrol.”
Enjoying downtime is a what he relishes. Quiñones finds relaxation watching movies and lounging at home. Raising a 3-year-old daughter keeps him going. “Westchase keeps me busy, but she does the most,” he laughed. “She wants to get into gymnastics and I’m thinking, you’re only three!”