Editor's Note: The editors of Locksmith Ledger are pleased to present an expanded version of our Icons of the Industry feature article from our 65th Anniversary coverage in November 2004. In interviewing these industry leaders, we realized that their accomplishments were far too numerous to fit in a...
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Today, the Museum boasts eight display rooms. The newest of these is an extensive lock collection that includes a Cannon Ball Safe, 30 early era time locks, safe escutcheon plates and a large number of British safe locks, door locks, padlocks, handcuffs and keys. Details about museum exhibits can be found on the web site www.lockmuseum.com.
When Detex Corporation National Training Manager Ernie Kaufman went to work for Detex Corporation in New York more than 50 years ago, he only planned to stay for three months. Luckily for the locksmith industry, his plans changed.
Kaufman's first position was working in the Watchman's Clock division. approximately five years later, Detex introduced the Hardware Division, which incorporated exit alarms, exit locks and remote indicating panels. That was over 45 years ago.
"I had the privilege of working with the president of Detex Corporation and also the assistant to the president," says Kaufman. "I worked on safety and security equipment in the Research and Development department. We developed new products to enhance existing hardware product lines."
Later, as Sales and Service manager of the New York office, he had the opportunity work with both Detex representatives and distributors as well as their customers. "This exposure allowed me to understand the needs of customers who were using our equipment. I also got the opportunity to learn what our customers would like to see as additional features in our products," Kaufman says.
Next, he was promoted to the position of Regional West Coast manager. Kaufman credits General Manager Edward Newton with guiding him through the operations and responsibilities of this new position and introducing him to the representatives, distributors and customers on the west coast. "One thing I learned was to be truthful about our products and not approve the sale of our equipment where it would not stand up to specifications and needs of the customer. By following this practice, I avoided putting the distributor in jeopardy or losing his customer and future customers as well."
As East Coast Regional Manager, Kaufman launched training seminars and certification classes covering Detex hardware equipment. This program is now known as Loss Prevention and Architectural Equipment. He then initiated the same training seminars and certification classes on the West Coast. These seminars proved to by very popular and as a result, his title changed from West Coast Regional Manager to National Education Manager.
Through the years, many of the people who attended these training seminars have returned to Kaufman's seminars to upgrade their skills in the operations and installation procedures for Detex equipment.
"In some instances I have been asked if our equipment could perform a certain special function needed by the customer. In many of these cases, we were able to modify the equipment to meet their needs. I also advised them to try using off-the-shelf products if at all possible. Whether Detex or any other manufacturer,s product, sometimes after special changes are made it can mean a midnight ride to the job site to perform repairs," Kaufman says.
"While the industry has changed in many ways, my feeling is that the people have remained the same. As new people come into our industry I find that electronic-based products are being requested along with the products we now have. We always appreciate helpful suggestions from locksmiths concerning new ways to make our equipment even more versatile," he adds
Ross "Buddy" Logan
Ross (Buddy) Logan is best known as the founder of Auto-Security Products, now known as ASP Inc. ASP was the first company to offer replacement locks and lock service parts for imported cars to American locksmiths.
Buddy learned locksmithing from his father C.J. Logan in the late 1960's. During that time Buddy also became friends with George Robbins, who was one of the best automotive locksmiths of that time. He also got to know Samuel and Claire Zeldin, founders of the first distribution company specializing exclusively in automotive locks beginning business in 1930.