In 1919, 100 years ago, World War 1 ended with the signing of the Treaty of Versailles, the Grand Canyon National Park was formed by Congress and the 19th Amendment was passed, giving women the right to vote. In the same year, 35-year-old John A. Doyle, a 12-year veteran of the Rochester Police Department, decided to open his own private investigation agency: Doyle Detective Bureau.
The company opened its doors on March 17, 1919, at the Commerce Building in downtown Rochester, New York, and under John’s leadership, the agency achieved national and international acclaim for its investigation of thefts, murders, kidnappings and other crimes (FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover would often call on him for help). The agency also employed private police to help protect local residencies, factories and banks.
Doyle Detective Bureau (now known to the industry as Doyle Security Systems) would go through many changes over the years. It would function as a payroll delivery and bank deposit business, retail security business, janitorial business, guard business and motorcycle escort business. It would be passed through four generations of Doyles, from founder John A. Doyle, to his son John G. Doyle, to his son John Gregory Doyle, to his son John G. Doyle Jr., the current president and CEO of the company (fifth generation Jack Doyle is currently working at the company as director of business development). And Doyle Security would see tremendous growth through numerous mergers and acquisitions, earning the distinction as one of Rochester’s 100 fastest growing companies six times, and consistently ranking highly on the SDM 100 (it currently sits at number 41).
Now, the Doyles are looking forward to the next 100 years.
“We have a lot of big plans,” said Jack Doyle. “It’s a very volatile time in terms of the entrance of some major players like Amazon and Google, but we’re experimenting with new strategies to maintain our footing in the residential security space. We’re also looking to diversify; more extensive commercial integration work is something we’re interested in cracking into. But we intend to stay in electronic security — it’s still a desirable, thriving business, and it’s been kind to us. For the foreseeable future, we plan on continuing on this course and opportunistically looking at opportunities to grow either by acquisitions or organically.”