The New Jersey Electronic Security Association (NJESA) celebrated the 50th anniversary of its founding with a gala dinner on Oct. 5 at Caesars Palace in Atlantic City. The association paid tribute to the “Pioneers of the NJ Security Industry” for their dedication and commitment to the industry through the years.

The association started 50 years ago when three visionaries from the alarm industry, Joseph Cioffi Jr, John Belleque and William C. Pollock, came together in December of 1969 to form the New Jersey Alarm Association as it was then called.

Each of the three founding members reached out to friends and brought in other companies they knew. The original membership fee was $50, and the association grew by adding members from all over the state. Joseph Cioffi Jr., from Bergen Protective Systems, served as the first president. 

“It is a privilege and honor to be president of this amazing association at this period in our history,” said NJESA President Christine Marzano at the gala. “As we celebrate our association’s remarkable milestone tonight, we are thrilled that you can share with us as we commemorate our rich history and pay tribute to our distinguished group of pioneers who continue to inspire us with their passion, commitment and generosity.” 

She added, “I want to express my gratitude for our devoted founders, Joseph Cioffi Jr., John Bellegue and William Pollock. These leaders laid a foundation for us to build upon, making the NJESA the special association that it is today.”

Joseph F. Cioffi III, the son of founder Joseph Cioffi Jr, then provided a brief history of the past 50 years along with a preview of the upcoming changes and new opportunities for the association. 

Mike Revness, the attorney for the association, presented the awards. The first, The Founders Award, was given to both John Belleque and William C. Pollock. Joseph Cioffi Jr. was present to receive his award and shared a few words and memories to a standing ovation.

The Outstanding Service Award was presented to: John Drucker, The DiCristina Group; Jerry Duffy, NJ Spectrum; Ken Gould, Ken Gould Consulting; Casey Guagenti; Daniel Jacquish, APS Corp.; Greg Kimball, Protective Services Group; Ted Leventhal, Marktek; Christine Marzano, Kidde/Edwards; Chris Mosley, Complete Security; Charlie Okun, CharlesOkun and Associates; Peter Raymond, PF Raymond; Michael Revness, Kurtz & Revness; Bob Shoremount, Strandberg Solutions; Lew Walters, Affiliated Monitoring; and Jeff Zwirn, IDS Research and Development.

The Legacy Award for Active Association Participation was given to: Bob Chartrand, Chartrand Associates; Lisa Chartrand, Chartrand Associates; John Luzzo, Merchant Alarm; Robert Shipman, B-Safe; and COPS Monitoring.

The final award, Recognition for Distinguished New Jersey Security Industry Achievement, was presented to: Robert Bitton, Supreme Security Systems; Cindy Duffy, NJ Spectrum; Richard Gould, Certified Protection; Don Maden, COPS Monitoring; Jim McMullen, COPS Monitoring; George Mosley, Complete Security Systems; and Pat Tobin, DMP.

New Jersey Governor Philip Murphy sent a letter of congratulations to the association and applauded NJESA´s professionalism and dedication to the safety and security of Garden State residents, businesses and government entities. He also offered special congratulations to all the award recipients.