National Council of Investigation & Security Services
In September 1975, the World Association of Detectives (W.A.D.) held its annual conference at the Netherlands Plaza Hotel in Cincinnati, Ohio. Representatives from twenty-one nations began arriving, and on the first evening a get-acquainted cocktail party was held to kick off what ultimately became a most historic meeting.
As private investigators and contract security operators relaxed before the start of a busy weeks program, Joe Duncan of Nashville, Tennessee remarked that there were a number of officers of national associations representing England, Italy, Israel, Germany and India present in the room. He went on to ask a question that many of us had, for years, asked ourselves — “Why don’t we have a national association here in the United States?” Having raised the question, Joe decided to explore the issue further. He approached Norman Sloan and myself, who were co-hosting the W.A.D. Conference, and asked if there be an objection to his initiating some discussion on the formation of a United States national association. After being assured that there would be no problem, it quickly became evident that no less than eight or nine state associations were represented in the room by either present or past officers. In addition, a number of officers and prominent U.S. members of the Council of International Investigators were also in attendance.
As Joe began circulating among the guests, it was clear there was considerable interest in the project. After a good deal of cocktail conversation, it was agreed that those who were interested would meet over a working breakfast the following morning to further explore the idea.
The following morning, eighteen people attended what turned out to be the founding meeting. To everyone’s surprise, there was such total agreement that committees were formed and Joe was elected temporary Chairman of the Committee of Concerned Guard and Investigation Companies. It was further agreed that an organizational meeting would be held in Nashville in the very near future.
Over a three-day weekend, December 12, 13, and 14, 1975, the C.C.G. & I.C. met at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Nashville, Tennessee. Thirty-five individuals were in attendance at this meeting. There was such general agreement regarding the need for the organization that petty differences were set aside in order to get the organization up and running.
It was agreed that the name of the new association would be the National Council of Investigation & Security Services, Inc. It was further agreed that the Council would retain the services of Smith, Bucklin & Associates, Inc., a Washington, D.C. management firm, who at the time managed the National Burglar and Fire Alarm Association. A tentative set of by-laws were adopted and a slate of officers elected. John J. Duffy of Per-Mar Security & Research Company in Davenport, Iowa, was elected President, and Joe Duncan agreed to serve as Chairman of the Board of Directors. Others elected were Charles E. Dennis, Jr., V.P. for Legislation; C.E. Bert Hinds, V.P. for Finance & Administration; Elliott Wolfe, V.P. for Investigations; Joseph D. Vinson, Sr., for Security Services; James Six, Secretary; and Merrill Roy, Treasurer. The Board of Directors was made up of Vincent Ruffolo, Reese I. Singleton, Louis Bommattel, Thomas E. Hannon, Harold James, John B. Dillon, Vance I. Morris, Jr., and Larry A. Webb. The first annual conference was scheduled for February 22, 23 and 24 1976, in New Orleans, Louisiana.
The Council immediately made its presence felt in Washington by taking a position on several pieces of pending legislation, particularly H.R. 10130, a bill that would have substantially increased the minimum wage and adversely affected the security services industry. Restrictive Occupational Safety and Health Act rulings were also addressed, State legislation watch committees were established to monitor various state legislative bodies.
The First Annual Conference of NCISS was highlighted by educational programs which included speakers such as Glen King, Executive Director of the International Association of Chiefs of Police; William Cunningham, President of Hallcrest Systems; and Dr. Richard Post, author and educator. The membership 43 individual company members, and seven state association members, with four more pending. A truly remarkable growth in just a few short months.
President John Duffy and the same officer corps were elected to serve along with a 24-member Board of Directors with geographic representation from all corners of the nation.
Looking back on my notes of this five-month period, I am amazed at the cooperative effort that was expended to lay the foundation for the Council, which has grown to be accepted as the “National Voice of Private Investigation and Security”.
By C.E. Bert Hinds, Past President, Founding Member
Private Investigators Assocation of Utah, Inc. (PIAU)
P.O. Box 1269
Bountiful, UT 84011