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OCBJ INSIDER

Is Steve Jones’ troop size about to get much, much larger?

See Peter J. Brennan’s front-page story on the potential of Santa Ana’s Allied Universal to go from North America’s largest private security force to the world’s largest if a deal to buy the UK’s G4S takes shape.

Allied’s already built a mammoth workforce in recent years; as we’ve covered the firm’s growth we’ve frequently compared the security firm’s employee count to the reported size of other countries’ armies.

In 2017, we noted that Allied’s base of 150,000 employees would make it the 34th largest army in world, right behind Japan’s.

By 2019, we said its workforce, then at 210,000 employees, was a bit larger than the size of France’s army (No. 21) at the time.

Early this year, Allied’s numbers topped 230,000 employees, larger than that of Saudi Arabia’s, at the time the world’s 20th-largest fighting force.

If Allied Universal acquires G4S, the security guard company would have 773,000 employees.

That would make it larger than the world’s sixth biggest military, Pakistan, which has about 654,000 members, Brennan notes.

It would be a better-run security force, too.

Rick Reiff states his case for re-electing John Moorlach on this week’s Leader Board.

The back-page contribution means our esteemed Editor-at-Large has now written almost as much for the Business Journal as the State Senator this year. Moorlach also has contributed to the Leader Board and our front page this year, warning of impending financial trouble for the area’s cities, due to pension obligations amid the pandemic, as well as the need for Sacramento to re-open Disneyland and other area businesses under a better thought-out plan than what’s been employed to date.

Moorlach is trailing Democratic challenger Dave Min in fundraising by a nearly three to one margin, according to sources. Polls suggest a very tight race.

A Min win would add another UCI law professor with an interest in banking and finance to the ranks of local politicians; Representative Katie Porter is widely expected to retain her 45th District seat.

Another local lawyer is making local political headlines: Callahan & Blaine’s Dan Callahan has been named the next chairman of New Majority California’s OC chapter, and will take over from Craig Realty’s Steve Craig.

For more legal news, see this week’s General Counsel Special Report, starting on page 27.

Sadder legal news last week comes with the death of John Stahr, an attorney well known for his involvement in OC’s arts and philanthropic scenes. He was 87.

Stahr was the founder of the OC office of Latham and Watkins, where he practiced for 30 years. He was also the chairman of Pacific Symphony, where he raised funds for expensive instruments that musicians otherwise wouldn’t be able to afford; he helped raise more than $500,000 to help complete the William J. Gillespie Organ.

He was also chairman of Arts Orange County during its formative years and later led the board of South Coast Repertory theater.  

“It’s impossible to give proper due to this man who influenced so many good things in our community,” said John Forsyte, Pacific Symphony’s President and CEO.

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Mark Mueller
Mark Mueller
Mark is the Editor-in-Chief of the Orange County Business Journal, one of the premier regional business newspapers in the country. He’s the fifth person to hold the editor’s position in the paper’s long history. He oversees a staff of about 15 people. The OCBJ is considered a must-read for area business executives. The print edition of the paper is the primary source of local news for most of the Business Journal’s subscribers, which includes most of OC’s major corporate and community players. Mark’s been with the paper since 2005, and long served as the real estate reporter for the paper, breaking hundreds of commercial and residential real estate stories. He took on the editor’s position in 2018.
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