That's an interesting question!
McDonald was the CEO of Pelco until they sold to Schneider in 2007. I don't know him but he seems to be most mentioned around (1) Pelco's old commitment to customer service and (2) the Pelco jet. He's still around sailing with the ex Pelco yacht.
I am not sure who Earl is in St. Louis.
On the training / teaching side, in the US, Charlie Pierce was pretty famous, especially for his video tapes back in the day. He is quite the character though I can't find any clips online to show it. We also did an interview with Charlie not too long ago.
I certainly don't want to be the arbiter on who is a 'legend' but I am happy to provide any color or response to any questions on people that I can answer.
I am in St. Louis and am not familiar with an "Earl" here. Been doing this for 25+ years
Earl "the pearl" Snyder at Security Equipment Supply?
Great guy! I worked with him at the old S&B Distributors.
This is an interesting discussion and I'm curious who others will chime in with.
I think if you stick around long enough and stay on top of technology and trends, though, what you'll realize is that the vast majority of these "legends" don't know what they're doing, or are so far out of touch with the reality of practical technology it's incredible. I'm not going to name names, but there are quite a few people the trade mags tell us are well respected and knowledgeable who I wouldn't trust to design a system for Derek's shed.
Great topic- Industry Legends could be categorized on several fronts- Those that were leaders in their respective technologies (manufacturers), those that transformed the supply chain (distribution) and those that set high standards for the installation trade (dealers). Don't be quick to discount those individuals that weren't overly technically inclined.
Their names and reputations are legendary because they had the vision and hired the right people that have kept the security industry intact to this point for others to benefit from.
I personally feel fortunate to have worked with many of the industry's "Silverbacks" in their prime.
Although it might be too soon to enter the Video Surveillance Hall of Fame, I nominate Fredrik Nilsson of Axis. I've always been impressed every time I have seen him talk, and of course Axis paved the way for IPVS to succeed Pelco's dominance.
Fredrik Nilsson has been responsible for Axis Communications North American operations since 2003. In this role, he has been instrumental in leading the industry shift from analog closed circuit television to network video. Mr. Nilsson serves on the Security Industry Association Board of Directors. He is a trusted industry speaker at leading events such as Securing New Ground, ASIS International, ISC West, and Interop. His articles have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, USA Today, and the Washington Post, and he has made numerous television appearances. He authored a book, Intelligent Network Video, published by CRC Press.
Prior to working for Axis, Mr. Nilsson served as a product manager for ABB, a global leader in power and automation technologies. He is a graduate of the Lund Institute of Technology and holds a master's degree in electrical engineering, with follow up post-graduate studies in economics.
Lets see in my 35 years in this industry I believe I can name a few industry veterans and legends:
Joe Lanier, Defensive Security one of the first independent security distributors in Texas in the 70's (Retired)
Bernie Robins, one of the greatest characters our industry has ever know. May he rest in peace.
Charlie Darsch industry veteran for many years and still going strong in his 80's (Detectronics)
Art Shaw industry veteran at ADI for many years. (Retired)
John Burton, industry veteran at ADI for many years. (Retired)
Ron Finley, one of the best security sales guy I have ever met. May he rest in peace.
Roy Thurston, another industry veteran great sales guy. (Radionics)
Earl Snyder, as you mentioned for sure a industry veteran in security distribution for many years.
Sandy Jones, is for sure one of the most active industry leaders and legends. SIA
In my many years in this industry I have come across many people who influenced me and this industry in a very positive way. I know I left out many people and I want to apologize for this.
This is a short list of veterans and legends in the security distribution and manufacturing side.
Chesapeake & Midlantic | 05/11/15 05:30pm
If you've ever attended a trade show in the US, you've probably run into Steve Surfaro at one time or another.
And Mary Lynn Garcia was one of the first people to apply empiricism to the field of physical security.
On a regional level, every distributor and manufacturer in the Northeast probably knows David Gonzalez. If you run into him at a trade show, ask him to tell you the story of how he once put a pilot in a chokehold midflight.
For me it is Vlado Damjanovski with his CCTV Bible, translated in Russian.
remarkable enough to be famous; very well known.
She might not be known outside of Michigan, but Ann Scott, formely of ADI, is a freaking rock star. Her departure from there was the final push for us to move away from distributors.
IPVMU Certified | 05/14/15 07:32pm
Who was the guy that used to teach all the Pelco classes out in Clovis?
He taught me how to use an oscilloscope, welder’s glass and coax crimpers. I want to say it was CCTV Bob or something like that?
Speaking of industry hot-shots, there is a contest running where you can vote for the most influential person in security.
May I advance for consideration, a local favorite and possibly the most feared famous end-user of all time, Carl the 'Living Legend' Lindgren?
Trecerdo, LLC | 05/18/15 11:52am
Don't forget the land of Access Control. There are:
Frank Gasztonyi and Hing Hung, the famous "Hg" of Mercury Security.
John Moss, founder of S2 and Software House.
Yeah it's like that. Everybody's got a story about how they personally deployed the maglocks in the Lincoln White House.
I would have to ask that Bill Bozeman be added to the list of Industry Legends. Bill took the reigns of PSA at a critical time turning the coop into one of the industries best member owned organizations. Today PSA under Bill's guidance focuses on tomorrow, what's happening, where the money is going and leading business owners to re-invent themselves to stay current. This industry veteran has helped so many move the marker.
Norris, Inc., S. Portland, ME | 05/21/15 01:25pm
I was impressed with Charlies seminars at isc west in, I think, 2003. CCCTV Bob was a wealth of analog knowledge at Pelco training in 2004 I think in NY.. Every overnight training down there was a party. Funny, though, everytime I brought up IP cameras in Bobs class, he would change the subject. How many people, though, nowadays know how to use a scope to test video levels and troubleshoot other issues. I do because of Bob.
Charlie and Bob for sure.
In Canada, I hear alot about Don Douglas, John Day and Frank Felice. Long timers, well known, lots of knowledge, all around good guys!