Len Rosenfeld, founder of AMCEST, passed away on May 18.


Sadly, SDM learned today that Leonard Rosenfeld, the founder of AMCEST in Roselle, N.J., passed away on May 18, 2009. Len was considered a pioneer in the alarm monitoring industry. His son, Fred, composed an essay about his father’s accomplishments and contributions to the industry. He asked SDM to share his essay with others in the industry. It follows...
Leonard Rosenfeld, an industry pioneer, passed away on May 18, 2009. Here are just a few of his many accomplishments and industry practices he created that are still industry standard operating procedures:
• Created the opportunity for independent dealers to realize monitoring revenue. In 1976 Len Rosenfeld founded the nation’s first nationwide contract central station, Amcest Corporation, thus creating the opportunity for independent alarm companies to realize recurring monitoring revenue.
• First use of watts lines to monitor alarms. Anyone using a long-distance or toll-free number to transmit an alarm signal has Len Rosenfeld to thank for proving that “an alarm sent across the country is just as quick and accurate and one sent across the street.”
• The concept of verification. In order to manage alarm volume from a central location and control costs, the concept of verifying most alarm signals was initiated by Rosenfeld. Verification was an important advantage an alarm company could offer when competing with non-verified tape dialers and direct police connections.
• You are an “RP.” The three-call dispatch format – verification, local authority dispatch, and responsible party notification – was first established by Mr. Rosenfeld. His marketing savvy is evident in the brochure he created to help dealers sell more systems by soliciting the people on the “RP” list.
• “Free” alarm equipment sells monitoring service. How do you sell a recurring expense like monitoring service when someone has to pay hundreds of dollars to add, or worse, replace a then expensive tape-dialer? Rosenfeld had an answer: Charge a couple of bucks more for the service to the dealer and let the dealer give the digital dialer away to the consumer. Tens of thousands of accounts were created that way.
• Alternative communications for higher levels of security. Mr. Rosenfeld founded Amcest Radio Division in 1982, thereby creating the first multi-state radio alarm monitoring network. This enabled independent alarm companies to realize even greater recurring revenue by providing higher levels of security communications.
• Medical alarms. The medical alarm industry, now known as PERS, was Len Rosenfeld’s visionary brain child, to address the safety need of the homebound, infirm and the elderly.
Leonard Rosenfeld has left a legacy few can rival. He left for himself, his family, and the companies he founded, a good name and reputation for honestly, fairness, innovation and dedication to the industry he nurtured. He is survived by his wife Roslyn; children Fred, Andrea and Sheila; and nine grandchildren. He will be missed.