SSI Hall Salutes Trio for Giving All
Throughout history, the most remarkable people have left their imprints on humankind by virtue of their actions. These heroic figures are altruistic men and women whose impact supersedes mere words, titles or affiliations. The electronic security industry is fortunate to have such dedicated, selfless individuals toil within its ranks.
This year three of them are being honored for their tireless efforts via induction into the Security Sales & Integration Hall of Fame. They are False Alarm Reduction Association (FARA) President and Director of the Montgomery County (Md.) Department of Police False Alarm Reduction Section Norma Beaubien, System Sensor Director Corporate Relations Charlie Darsch and former Bosch Security Systems National Accounts Sales Manager Harvey Eisenstadt.
They share the common thread of expending boundless energy and devoting countless hours during the course of several decades to a wide variety of key industry organizations, events, issues and causes. The entire industry owes them a sincere debt of gratitude as thousands have reaped the benefits of the hard work, blood and sweat that have earned them a spot in the SSI Hall.
Established in 2004 to represent the ultimate recognition for performance excellence, the SSI Hall of Fame annually enshrines those uncommon people who have etched out an indelible impression within the profession, sustained over the course of an entire career. These rare persons’ dedication and accomplishments make them uniquely irreplaceable. They are the innovators whose impact has molded and transformed the industry into the thriving, vibrant business it is today.
Selected by a panel of previous inductees and other industry leaders, Beaubien, Darsch and Eisenstadt join the pantheon of other industry greats forever immortalized in the SSI Hall of Fame, which now totals 37 members. As you will see in the ensuing profiles, this trio’s impeccable credentials and valuable contributions are indisputable.
President of False Alarm Reduction Association (FARA) and Director of Montgomery County (Md.) Department of Police False Alarm Reduction Section
Why She’s on the List
- Spent more than 20 years dedicated to creating forums and easing tensions between law enforcement agencies and the alarm industry regarding false alarms
- Co-founder and long-time president of FARA, an organization for facilitating optimal communications among law enforcement, alarm companies and end users to stem false alarms
- Turned FARA into clearinghouse for false alarm manuals, guides, prevention bulletins, brochures, model ordinances and white papers for public safety and the alarm industry
- In law enforcement capacity, manages program that has reduced false alarm dispatches by almost 62 percent as alarm user base grew 115 percent; her initiatives have saved the department more than $12.5 million in resources since 1995
- In 2005, helped found, launch and administrate the Police Dispatch Quality (PDQ) Award program, which honors alarm companies for false alarm reduction efforts
Most Memorable Moment
“In FARA’s early days, as an exhibitor at IACP’s annual convention in Charlotte, we had to stay at an unaffiliated hotel. When we arrived, our vice president picked up her room phone only to send numerous cockroaches scurrying for cover. The rest of us went to the hotel restaurant, which turned out to be a sleazy biker bar. We then noticed the lobby featured an automated condom machine. We tried without luck to find another hotel. So, persevere we did!
“I left my room the next morning and was greeted by a man sitting in the hallway in his underwear smoking a cigarette. Later, while waiting in the lobby for the free shuttle to the convention center, an old man with one eye and a very hunched back came in and announced he was our driver. This trip was a never-ending display of ‘Oh, my God!’ moments.”
How Things Have Changed
“I believe both law enforcement and the electronic security industry are more willing to engage in discussions, entertain the other’s viewpoint and gain a better understanding of each other’s positions on alarm management techniques.
“Law enforcement has been forced to do more with less due to the 9/11 attacks. The Columbine High School massacre required us to look at how we deal with school violence. Meanwhile populations grow but most budgets remain constant or decrease. These trends place pressure on law enforcement.
“The electronic security industry has blossomed the past 10 years due to advancements in technology. Alarm companies can now offer more than a basic alarm system. These advancements have opened doors, and many are taking advantage of that.”
What the Future Holds
“It is my hope law enforcement and the industry will continue to develop strong working relationships that will have a positive impact on alarm management issues. As long as the industry continues to view false alarms as a plague and takes substantive and proactive measures to address them, law enforcement will continue, for the most part, to work cooperatively with it.”
Something People Might Not Know
“I race in demolition derbies. There is nothing else in this world like the feeling you get when you can legally drive ‘hell bent for leather’ ramming your 2,000-pound vehicle into someone else’s! Engines racing, the sounds made at impact, the smell of burning oil, the cheering crowds — it is a rush like no other.”
Reaction to Being Inducted
“I am truly humbled to be the first public safety professional inducted into the SSI Hall of Fame. It is very rewarding to be respected and honored by an industry I ultimately regulate, and shows I am capable of building bridges and fostering an environment where both sides feel comfortable exchanging ideas.”
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