Security Industry Great, John W. Mabry Jr., Dies
Security industry veteran, John William Mabry, Jr., born on October 5, 1937 in Kansas City, Mo., tragically died on November 18, 2011 in a car accident. John was en route to Atlanta from his home in Jacksonville, Fla. to visit his grandchildren.
After earning his bachelor’s degree from Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas, John joined the US Navy where he served aboard the USS Ranger, CV-61, as a commissioned officer. While stationed in San Francisco, he met his future wife, Sue Dougherty, about whom John commented “…I found my heart in San Francisco.”
Upon leaving the US Navy in 1962, John launched a ground-breaking car wash franchise that eventually sold for over 1,000 times his original investment. In 1969, John founded the American Alarm Company, which he sold to Honeywell Inc. in 1983. When announcing the acquisition, SDM magazine exclaimed, “… the premier alarm company in the United States has been sold to Honeywell.”
From 1983 until 1993, John served as vice president of Honeywell’s Protection Services Division and later vice president of Sales and Business Development within Honeywell’s $3.4 billion Home and Building Control business unit. John was instrumental in advancing Honeywell’s expansion strategies that placed Honeywell in the forefront of the North American security market.
John served as president of Security Network of America (SNA) from 1993 through 2000, where he increased SNA membership from 20 to more than 40 UL listed entities, nationwide. Today, SNA has more than 82 member companies in North America, representing more than $390 million annual revenue.
In 2003, John joined the board of directors of Integrated Alarm Services Group, Albany, N.Y. John was elected chairman of the board in 2006 with a mandate to restructure corporate management. As chairman, John was instrumental in replacing management, aligning priorities and resolving multiple financial issues resulting in a substantial increase of IASG’s share value. Later, John presided over the successful sale of IASG, valued at $140 million, to Protection One in 2007.
Throughout his career, John sought to bring cohesion to the security alarm industry. In 1972, John was appointed to the board of directors of the Central Station Alarm Association (CSAA). Later, John was elected CSAA president from 1981 through 1983. Afterwards, John continued as an honorary and ex officio member of the CSAA board. Similarly, as a member of the National Burglar & Fire Alarm Association (now Electronic Security Association), John’s peers named him to the NBFAA’s board of directors. Recognizing John’s vision and leadership, John became president of the NBFAA serving from 1984 through 1986. As president, he founded the NBFAA’s National Training School and grew membership to nearly 3,000 members.
Recognizing his many contributions to the alarm industry, John received the Morris F. Weinstock Person of the Year Award in 1983. The award acknowledged John’s leadership, outstanding achievements and his continued efforts on behalf of the alarm industry and the Electronic Security Association.
John received further recognition in 2004 when the Central Station Alarm Association presented the Stanley C. Lott Award to him. The Lott award is the CSAA’s most prestigious recognition of leadership and honored John’s exceptional contributions to and tireless support of the CSAA and its membership.
John actively served on several alarm company boards, including ADS Security, Nashville, Tenn. for 14 years; American Alarm and Communications, Arlington, Mass. for 15 years; and the board of Protectron Inc., Montréal, Québec, Canada.
John was a member of the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), the American Society of Industrial Security (ASIS) and the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). John also served on the Burglary Standards Committee for the Underwriters’ Laboratories (UL).
Together with a strong sense of community service, John applied his leadership skills to bring a sense of cohesion to the communities in which he lived. A founder and past president of Xavier University’s “All for One” program and his service as president of the Cincinnati Police Department association demonstrated his concern for a strong and safe community.
John was happily married to Sue Dougherty Mabry for nearly 49 years. Three daughters — Michele McCauley of Boca Raton, Fla.; Kelly Kennedy of Johns Creek, Ga.; and, Kristin McCabe of Johns Creek, Ga., all college graduates, in addition to John W. Mabry, III of Baltimore, Md., a graduate of the United States Naval Academy, survive John. Both John and Sue celebrated the births and many accomplishments of their four children and their 13 grandchildren, including four sets of twins.
As a loveable curmudgeon, John will be long remembered for his outgoing personality, wry wit, high integrity, patriotism and strong dedication to family and friends. Most of all, John will be remembered for his “Mabryisms.” Frequently, his children and staff members repeat John’s “Mabryisms” as they communicate an important value or rule. For example, “… the slow buffalo drinks dirty water” and “…it’s like spitballs against a battleship baby!” — Graciously submitted by family friend and security industry associate, Steven Kappel
A funeral, memorial and reception for John will take place on Dec. 2 and 3 in Ponte Vedra, Fla., located about 37 miles from the Jacksonville International Airport (JAX).
Blocks of rooms under “John Mabry Memorial” are available at the following hotels:
Hilton Garden Inn: 45 PGA Tour Blvd., Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. 32082; phone: 904-395-5597.
Room Rates: $89 or $109 suite (plus tax). Closest to church and reception; free shuttle service to church and reception.
Hampton Inn: 1220 Marsh Landing Pkwy., Jacksonville Beach, Fla. 32250; phone: 904-280-9101.
Room rate: $79 (plus tax). Free shuttle service to church and reception.
Marriott Sawgrass: 1000 PGA Tour Blvd., Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. 32082; phone: 800-577-6009.
Room rate: $159 (plus tax). Shuttle service not available to church and reception.
Friday, Dec. 2:
4:00 – 7:00 pm: Family Visit
Quinn Shalz Funeral Home
3600 Third Street, South
Jacksonville Beach, FL 32250
Saturday, Dec. 3:
12:00 pm: Memorial Service
Our Lady Star of the Sea Catholic Church
545 A1A North
Ponte Vedra Beach, FL 32082
Immediately following Memorial Service, Reception
110 Championship Way
Ponte Vedra Beach, FL 32082
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations are preferred in honor of John W. Mabry Jr. to either of the following organizations:
The Wounded Warrior Project
4899 Belfort Road, Suite 300
Jacksonville, FL 32256
The Tim Tebow Foundation
2220 County Road 210 West
Suite 108, Jacksonville, FL 32259
Should you wish to send a card or letter to the family, please use the following address:
117 Plantation Circle
Ponte Vedra, FL 32082-3921
Questions about John’s funeral arrangements may be directed to:
The Mabry family thanks you for your love, prayers and support.