Between Us Pros: Celebrating the SSI Industry Hall of Fame Class of 2024

The SSI Industry Hall of Fame Class of 2024 have dedicated their lives and careers to helping the security industry in many ways.

Between Us Pros: Celebrating the SSI Industry Hall of Fame Class of 2024

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One of my proudest security industry accomplishments during my tenure as Security Sales & Integration’s editor-in-chief was establishing the SSI Industry Hall of Fame in 2004.

I had spent several years in the business by that time. And it had become apparent to me that, for an industry as vital as electronic security (including fire and life safety) — where its practitioners not only safeguard assets but also deploy systems that protect people from harm and literally save lives — there was no program or institution in place to preserve the important accomplishments and legacies of the most prominent leaders and innovators behind that noble mission.

Humbly Toiling on Way to SSI Industry Hall of Fame

The fact that those men and women never did it for the accolades or personal recognition, humbly toiling in an industry whose solutions are designed to inconspicuously perform in the background, made them all the more deserving of this type of recognition.

Through the years, it was among my most enjoyable and fulfilling experiences to lead the nomination process, inform surprised candidates of their selection, put together their lifetime career histories for publication and be onstage for their often-emotional induction presentations in front of their friends, colleagues and even family members during ISC West in Las Vegas.

SSI Industry, Hall of Fame, Industry Hall of Fame

I came to know the shock and awe of that experience firsthand when, in 2017, a group of industry icons conspired with SSI’s executive management to surreptitiously elect me to the Hall of Fame.

I certainly never anticipated being chosen to be placed among that hallowed group. That it happened less than a month after my father had passed away made it all the more poignant. But that is emblematic of the level of impact and stature this program has achieved.

Honorees have traveled from around the globe to be present at the ceremony, and celebratory after-parties have not been uncommon.

SSI Industry Hall of Fame: Preeminent Acknowledgement

Today, the SSI Industry Hall of Fame is the preeminent acknowledgement of an individual’s contributions to the essential, vast and rewarding security endeavor. Membership has swelled to more than 125 people, all of whom have played a key role propelling forward the best interests of the industry — and, thus, society as a whole.

The Class of 2024 is especially meaningful for me because I have been directly influenced, inspired and/or mentored by each one. As such, I can wholeheartedly endorse their inclusion. Indeed, I urge others to emulate their professionalism, dedication, ethics and fellowship.

Jeff Zwirn, president of IDS Research and Development, Inc.; Kirk MacDowell, president and CEO of MacGuard Security Advisors, Inc.; and Kelly Bond, partner with Davis Mergers & Acquisitions Group, are three of the most significant people I was fortunate enough to encounter early on in my security journey.

I teamed with Zwirn for many groundbreaking articles, including 1999’s high-profile George Revelle murder case. MacDowell was integral to a 2001 cover story I did on Post Alarm’s Crystal Cathedral security system. Bond started in the industry the same year as me, and she has helped keep me abreast of business and M&A activity.

Coincidentally, it was also during my rookie year that Andrew Lanning co-founded Hawaii’s Integrated Security Technologies, alongside his equally distinguished wife, Christine. I got to know him through the PSA Security Network, and he taught me about the critical relationship between cybersecurity and physical security.

We were both among the founding members of the PSA Cybersecurity Committee and presented at associated events. Later on, I oversaw the couple’s 2016 SSI cover story.

Impressive Security Command Center

Finally, I am not sure what year I first met Aria Kozak, founder and CEO of Elite Interactive Solutions. However, it was in the very early 2000s that I visited an impressive security command center that he was running in the northern end of southern California’s San Fernando Valley.

Well ahead of the curve, he was already pushing the envelope for remote video monitoring to mitigate crime more effectively than traditional burglar alarm systems could. His affable disposition, vision and passion for the business left a lasting impression — so much so that I began working for him last August.

Whereas past Hall classes typically included retirees (or the deceased), all of the 2024 enshrinees’ conquests continue to unfold for what will ultimately be some of the greatest security stories ever told. Congratulations to all!

Check out more about all five of this year’s SSI Industry Hall of Fame inductees here:

And learn about all of the SSI Hall of Fame members here:

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About the Author

Contact:

Scott Goldfine is the marketing director for Elite Interactive Solutions. He is the former editor-in-chief and associate publisher of Security Sales & Integration. He can be reached at [email protected].

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