Introducing the SSI Industry Hall of Fame Class of 2017
Imbued with equal measures of integrity, ambition, innovation, humility and selflessness, another diverse and distinguished group of individuals are presented with one of the industry’s most prestigious honors.
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DAN BUDINOFF | PRESIDENT, SECURITY SPECIALISTS
Why He’s Being Inducted
- Nearly 40 years as a visible, respected and successful electronic security industry business leader
- Founded Security Specialists in 1978 out of trunk of car and grew it into a top residential and commercial security system design and implementation provider
- High level of activity in industry trade groups, driven to share knowledge and best practices among peers and put industry ahead of own interests
- Involved with local trade associations since early 1980s, became an NTS instructor and served as vice chair of the NTS Committee for many years; founding president of local association chapter and served on the NBFAA Board
- Other honors include 2004 NBFAA Sarah Jackson Award and ESA Morris Weinstock 2011 Person of the Year Award
- Appointed Chairman of the PSA Board of Directors in 2015
Bio: Dan Budinoff
- Born in Port Chester, N.Y., in 1951
- One of two siblings, parents ran a vending machine business
- Married to wife Kimberly, who assists in the business
- Two adult children from prior marriage
- Says if career had taken another path might have become a teacher or engineer
- If he had a “redo” he would have finished college and gotten a business degree
- Licensed in several security/life-safety capacities and certified on many security and life-safety products
- Other interests include boating and traveling “to warm places in the cooler seasons”
Keys to Success
“I have always been driven to succeed and believed that I would. I have always believed in do the right thing for the client, and do it to the best of our ability. I learned from my peers that you need to run your company like a business and understand what it costs to put the key in the door every morning. Then you need to understand the needs of your clients and provide solutions that they can see a return on their investment. Anyone can sell a box of parts for less, but can they answer the client’s needs?”
Check Your Oil?
“I have never been good at working for others, I always have wanted to lead rather than follow. I started my first business, an automotive towing company, while I was still in high school. In 1972, I purchased a service station and was selling regular gas for 36.9 cents a gallon! A police officer friend of mine did alarm work on the side. He’d stop by the gas station and would ask me to help him install alarm systems in methadone clinics in the Bronx when I was looking bored at the garage. I sold the station in 1978 and started Security Specialists out of the trunk of my car.”
Promoting the Common Good
“I firmly believe it’s my responsibility to give back to the industry that has been very good to me. I never thought of my peers as competitors, but rather as resources for what I still have to learn. I’m proud to have been involved in the professional growth of the industry ove
r the past 38 years by either teaching, marching on Washington or meeting with local officials to review false alarm issues. We hear people complain about whatever, but we don’t often see those same people contribute to solutions. The 80/20 rule applies; 80% of the industry complains or sits idle while 20% does the heavy lifting that benefits 100%.”
Products & People Perspective
“Wireless and IP have been the biggest technology disrupters in the industry, resulting in easier installation of products that provide an enormous number of solutions that consumers at all levels seem to desire. However, the security industry as a whole does not have the ability to bring a lot of these new products to market. Only very well financed entities have the financial horsepower to market these items to a large populous. And the biggest challenge has not changed: there simply are not enough people entering the industry. The industry needs to do a much better job of marketing itself to high and trade schools, and then pay our employees a decent living wage.”
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