Introducing the SSI Industry Hall of Fame Class of 2019
SSI’s Industry Hall of Fame hails those who have contributed most significantly to the security industry. Here are 2019’s inductees.
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Alan Glasser | Executive Director, Metropolitan Burglar and Fire Alarm Association of New York
- Born in 1948 in Bensonhurst, N.Y.
- Father was a high-end men’s clothing manufacturer, mother an interior decorator
- Married to wife Ann for 18 years; has two children and five grandchildren
- Son Michael is an accomplished security consultant
- Served in the New York National Guard, and earned associates degree in electrical technology at NYC Community College
- Author of more than 1,500 security trade publication articles
- Other interests include ham radio, firearms and photography, with credits including many security trade publications
Why He’s on the List
- More than a half-century of alarm company, central station, manufacturing, distribution and consulting security industry excellence
- Spent 40 years as a leading alarm association participant, advocate, leader and educator/trainer
- Helped found the New York Burglar and Fire Alarm Association and has served as president and executive director of that organization as well as the Metropolitan Burglar and Fire Alarm Association; also founder and president of the New York Low Voltage Contractors Association
- Companies he worked for included Astroguard Security Systems, Amcest, Aritech, IntelliSense Security Systems, C&K Systems, Radionics, SOLFAN, ALEPH, Barantec, APS Security Systems and ADT’s national accounts program
- First salesman on the East Coast to sell industry’s first microprocessor-based control panel (1980, Radionics) and first Dualtec dual technology motion detector using microwave Doppler shift and passive infrared housed in one unit (1982, SOLFAN)
Break-ins Put Things in Motion
“I would like to thank the three burglars who made three burglary attempts on my home in 1965 while I was a senior at Lafayette High School in Brooklyn, the third time while I was there doing my homework! My father called an alarm company and he, the salesman and I met in the kitchen. ‘Louis, this is how much it will cost to put it in and this is how much per month,’ said the salesman. ‘Dad, let’s go to the living room and talk about this. I know electronics, I can find the parts and put it in myself,’ I said. My father accepted my offer and I successfully installed the system.
“A year later after high school, I went to work for the New York Telephone Co. in Manhattan. Based on my mom telling a general contractor I had installed that initial system, he approached me with a conversation that went something like this … Him: ‘I have a customer who wants a burglar alarm, do you want to do it?’ Me: ‘I work for the telephone company, I don’t do burglar alarms.’ Him: ‘I don’t know anyone else.’ Me: ‘I don’t do burglar alarms.’ Him: ‘You can make money.’ Well that did it! Yes was my answer. Two years later I quit the phone company and I never looked back.”
Keys to Success
“Give back! In the beginning I knew nothing. I attended classes. I attended seminars. I joined the local alarm association. I worked for other alarm companies. I learned a trade. I learned a business. I learned how to become successful. I learned how to make money. But the laws of physics dictate that there must be an exchange of energy. You cannot just keep taking in. You have to give something back. So I give back as much as I can from what I have learned and experienced.
“From early on I was interested in electronics and money, and combined with the three attempted burglaries on my home, it was clear electronic security was my destiny. I never had any challenges and/or adversities. Just forged ahead and never looked back. Maybe it was just luck; maybe it was just tenacity.”
One Thing Leads to Another
“In 1978, I joined the Metropolitan Burglar and Fire Alarm Association [MBFAA], first as a member, to learn, and then went on to contribute as a trainer, seminar giver, member of the board of directors and an officer. There was a need for a New York statewide alarm association, so in 1981 myself and a few others formed the New York Burglar and Fire Alarm Association [NYBFAA].
“I took my knowledge and began writing articles for the industry, and eventually wrote for just about every security magazine. That led to seminars that I have given at ISC East and alarm association meetings throughout the country. I was one of the first instructors to teach NBFAA’s National Training School Level 1 course in New York State. I developed the nation’s first security installation course at New York City College of Technology. I also teach courses that help many companies and individuals become licensed to practice their trade in New York State.”
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