The Zen Zones of Matt Ballantyne
Matt Ballantyne comes to H&S Protection as a master of two Zen zones: working and fixing things around his house and garage and on the basketball court. He’s hoping to add a third – taking his skill in building and fixing things around his house, and dovetailing that with his new technician position for H&S. “The repair work around the house I prefer to do myself if I can,” he said.
Joining H&S in January after working in the food industry off and on since he was 13, Matt has already picked up a lot on the job. “I’ve learned a lot. I’ve always been interested in audiovisual technology. My dad was a master electrician and it’s been fun learning about the stuff he did his whole life. If I have questions, I’ve been able to ask him what to do,” Matt observed.
Matt also did an 8-and-a-half-9 year stint in the prison industry as a guard, until he was assaulted. “I loved everything about the job, but after I had my jaw and orbital bone broken, I couldn’t pass the psych evaluation test afterwards,” he said. After the assault incident, prison employees are given mandatory 90 days off, then must pass the evaluation to return to their job.
Beyond his work in the prison, Ballantyne was unaware of the security industry. “I looked up H&S on the Internet and they had a high reputation in the area. I was looking for something where I could take care of my family and get on a more regular schedule,” he said. His restaurant position had erratic hours and Ballantyne is happy now to be on a consistent schedule to spend time with his family.
Matt is married to his wife Janelle, and they have a son Xavier (4) and a daughter on the way. “Taking care of my family is big for me,” he said.
He likes Wisconsin, but misses family in North Dakota and Utah. Until moving to SE Wisconsin to help with his in-laws, Ballantyne spent most of his life in North Dakota. He wrestled through high school and at Ricks College, Rexburg, ID (currently BYU-Idaho).
“At the Christmas party when I served H&S, I talked with Steve (Garritson) and Nancy (DeSandre), and let them know I was looking for more family time. Steve asked, “Are you good with your hands?’ I told him yes, and it was history after that.”
“I didn’t know anything about H&S at the time, but have seen a high level of professionalism since joining the team,” Matt added.
Matt loves basketball, playing six days a week at churches in the area surrounding Oconomowoc. He also used to referee kids basketball games.
“The garage and basketball court are my two little zen zones,” Matt smiled. H&S sees a third Zen zone as Matt brings his skills to security projects around SE Wisconsin. H&S welcomes Matt to the team.