Serving with Distinction Since 1977
A message from Steven R. Cotner
It seems like yesterday that my father Dick Cotner, who was retiring as Agent in Charge of the IRS Criminal Investigation office in Toledo, talked to me about the possibility of starting a Private Investigative firm. My dad told me that several local attorneys, including former US District attorney Bill Connelly, had asked him to consider starting a business to fill a tremendous need in the area. I had worked for a couple of years undercover for two federally funded drug units after getting my degree in Law Enforcement from Owens College. After that brief exposure to drug investigations, I decided to go back to school at Bowling Green State University to complete my degree in Criminal Justice.
When Corporate Intelligence Consultants started in May 1977, we were very fortunate to employ several former IRS agents. These guys were about my father's age — 50. They had tremendous skills in interviewing, accounting, and developing evidence to present to our clients. These guys were more than employees, they were mentors and teachers. They were also a beacon of integrity that our company was founded on.
For the first five years as the business developed, I spent a number of months on the road working undercover investigations for manufacturers primarily. These undercover investigations were really intelligence gathering operations that looked at anything that may have negatively affected the company's bottom line. We usually worked on theft issues at every location, documenting poor supervision, drug and alcohol abuse on the job and sexual harassment.
In 1980, Corporate Intelligence Consultants began doing what we called background checks. At the time, no one else in Ohio was doing this on a corporate level. The process, before the internet and the FCRA, involved a lot of legwork and was fairly costly. Over the years our systems have developed so that we can provide professional, FCRA-compliant Pre-Employment Screening at a much lower cost with quicker turn-around times.
Workers Compensation Fraud was also a big problem for our clients. Surveillance is an art that cannot be learned overnight. Dennis Austin has been involved primarily in surveillance activities with Corporate Intelligence Consultants for nearly two decades. You will not find a more capable videographer conducting workers compensation and FMLA investigations today. All you have to do is compare our documentation with any other, and you will see that we have a more advanced, extremely professional end product.
As time passed, we continued to hire former FBI and Secret Service agents as well as police detectives who brought a new perspective and a new set of expertise to help solve our clients' problems. Even after 37 years, John Patrick, our Senior Consultant who specializes in Corporate Security Management matters, and other members of our team, wake up in the middle of the night with thoughts about solutions to solve clients' problems. We still get excited catching the bad guys! We have been blessed and very honored to serve some very well-known businesses and respected individuals; assisting them in solving very critical problems and working with them to develop programs to help them avoid these issues.
I have been particularly blessed to work with a very ingenious team of people whose focus is foremost: How do we best serve our clients with integrity? As we tailor programs to their needs, our clients are an integral part of the process.
At Corporate Intelligence Consultants, we belong to many organizations and serve on many boards. We are active members of our community and believe in giving back for the help that we have received from others.
As we look ahead, we will continue to be available to respond to our clients' needs 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We believe that as the economy strengthens, our clients will look to be more proactive when it comes to Loss Prevention and Security Problem Avoidance. We will continue to grow our Pre-Employment Screening business and will be expanding our research options and adding services to meet our clients’ needs. Our Drug Screening component continues to grow. Both current and new clients appreciate the seamless ordering and reporting we offer. CIC has the experience, tools and resources in place to help you develop programs that reduce the potential for liability. We look forward to serving you.
Steven R. CotnerPresident
Corporate Intelligence Consultants