Tonight I will be attending the formal award ceremony for The George A. Weinstock Award, given out each year by the California Alarm Association (CAA) at the CAA Winter Convention in San Francisco.

Patty Hartman will be the 2012 recipient of the George A. Weinstock Award for lifetime achievement and service to the security industry. But most notably, Hartman, a former two-term president of CAA, is the first female to receive the award.

It is said that George Gunning, Frank Burke, and Tony Smith convinced Hartman to first run for president of the CAA. She was a natural, becoming the first person to ever be elected to a second term. She strengthened organizational structure for the CAA and its 10 regional chapters, while fighting on the forefront of several significant legislative and regulatory battles that threatened the industry.

Hartman started in the security industry in 1982. While Hartman’s previous experience includes serving as a customer service manager for DMP and various positions for more than 20 years with Bay Alarm of Pacheco, Calif., she currently serves with Alarm Capital Alliance, a Media, Pa.-based firm that purchases alarm accounts from dealers.

A hard worker, who has contributed to the growth and expansion of the electronic security industry associations at the local, state, and national level, she says her father taught her to "never play the gender card and embrace a strong work ethic."

As Bart Didden, ESA past president shared in the Tribute book given out for the event, "Congratulations, Patty. Our industry is stronger because of your willingness to share your talents with our associations. Your service to our industry is worthy of this honor."

The George A. Weinstock Award was established in 1999, and is the highest honor the association can award, recognizing a standard of excellence and service. I am looking forward to tonight’s presentation, which always includes great food, some light-hearted ribbing, heart-felt celebration, and genuine respect and appreciation. If you are attending as well, make sure you say “Hi.” I love any opportunity to meet fellow alarm industry professionals and SDM's readers.