Hot Seat: Hail to the New ESA Chief

The Electronic Security Association (ESA, formerly NBFAA) formally introduced its new president, Dom D’Ascoli, at the recent Electronic Security Expo (ESX) in Pittsburgh. D’Ascoli is proprietor of Smoky Mountain Systems, a full-service installing security contractor based in Franklin, N.C. SSI caught up with the industry veteran to find out a little bit more about him and his plans as ESA president.

What is your professional background?
My career in the security industry started in communications when I was in the military from 1966 to 1968. After I concluded my service, I worked for Southern Bell from 1970 to 1982. I started my own communications company in 1982, diversifying into security in 1983, and home automation in 1994. Additionally, I operate a CLEC [competitive local exchange company] that is licensed in Florida and North Carolina, an Internet company, a private police company and two Radio Shack franchises.

Why did you accept the role as president of ESA?
I wanted to become president of ESA because I believe in its mission. ESA represents and supports the security industry through its chapters and it also provides resources to help its members grow their businesses. These resources include ESA’s work in government relations, industry affairs, education and training, public relations, code of ethics and standards — which are also the association’s mission components. I support all of these mission components and am proud to be the one to help further the goals of ESA. There is a great amount of gratification in being president of the most important association in the security industry.

What goals do you hope to accomplish as president?
I have several goals as the 39th president of the association. They are, not necessarily in this order: making ESA’s National Training School’s education and certification programs the strongest in the industry; increasing the number of Security America Risk Retention Group policyholders; extend the opportunity for all security companies to join ESA in all states; having a national apprenticeship program; and making ESX a major profit center.

What industry challenges do you consider most urgent?
I see two challenges on the horizon. One is the proposed movement away from POTS lines and the other is one standard for all manufacturers to use on a national basis.

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Tagged with: Hot Seat Business

About the Author


Scott Goldfine is Editor-in-Chief and Associate Publisher of Security Sales & Integration. Well-versed in the technical and business aspects of electronic security (video surveillance, access control, systems integration, intrusion detection, fire/life safety), Goldfine is nationally recognized as an industry expert and speaker. Goldfine is involved in several security events and organizations, including the Electronic Security Association (ESA), Security Industry Association (SIA), Security Industry Alarm Coalition (SIAC), False Alarm Reduction Association (FARA), ASIS Int'l and more. Goldfine also serves on several boards, including the SIA Marketing Committee, CSAA Marketing and Communications Committee, PSA Cybersecurity Advisory Council and Robolliance. He is a certified alarm technician, former cable-TV tech, audio company entrepreneur, and lifelong electronics and computers enthusiast. Goldfine joined Security Sales & Integration in 1998.

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