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ASIS: Celebrating 60 Years

ASIS International President Dave N. Tyson, CPP, welcomed attendees to the 61st Annual Seminar and Exhibits Monday morning amidst marching-band fanfare and a parade of more than one hundred flags representing some of the countries where ASIS members can be found. ASIS is celebrating its 60th year, and Tyson described ways the association has evolved over time, from expanding globally to developing partnerships to new research and program initiatives.

"The six founding members, who first met in 1955 and recognized that an organization like ASIS was needed, could not have imagined that someday it would evolve and advance to become the leading organization in the security management profession," Tyson told the crowd.

Tyson also extolled the importance of volunteer leadership to the Society, that the membership and volunteers are "the very heart of all the innovations and enthusiasm that is ASIS."

The audience then both laughed and gasped as Jon Wee and Owen Morse, a comedy duo known as The Passing Zone, performed daring juggling feats celebrating the association's 60th anniversary. The men invited Doug Fitzgerald, CPP, on stage to balance four spinning plates and a ball while scythes were tossed around him. And, after encouraging applause, Tyson himself laid on the floor as the duo stood over him, juggling and performing acrobatics.

After the performance, Tyson took to the stage again to discuss the challenges the security industry faces today. As technology evolves, companies move their headquarters to developing countries, EU privacy issues are brought to the forefront, and natural disasters make their mark on the world, ASIS International advances the industry through programs, volunteer leadership, and integration, he explained.

"Something new is always on the horizon, and we must take the time to find the tools that are so critical for keeping the assets entrusted to you secure," Tyson noted.

After a well-choreographed ballet performance during which spandex-clad Wee and Morse juggled chainsaws, the ASIS Board of Directors joined Tyson on stage to cut the ribbon and announced the opening of the exhibit hall.

"There is a good reason why our exhibition floor is called the largest, most complete, most exciting exhibition dedicated to security products and services in the world," Tyson said to rousing applause from the crowd.