Founded by Charles and Judy Ackerman, ECLE was established to fill a need in the lightning protection industry for affordable, high quality, effective products and fast, friendly service.
Chuck and Judy’s experience with lightning protection began in 1967 with the opening of Ackerman Lightning Protection Company, Inc., in Winsted, Connecticut. Ackerman Lightning Protection Company was a UL-listed lightning protection installation contracting firm, servicing residential, agricultural, industrial, commercial, institutional and governmental accounts in New England and New York.
By studying the manufacturing industry and applying his extensive experience-including certification as a master installer, master designer and reviewer for the Lightning Protection Institute (LPI Standard 175), Chuck developed a way to make components that were high quality, easy to use and affordable.
In 1984, they opened ECLE and sold Ackerman Lightning Protection Company to two of their employees. The decision to sell their thriving installation business was made so ECLE would not compete with its customers for installation business. This honest approach has remained intact, fostering generations of loyal customers.
Chuck and Judy’s daughter, Jennifer Morgan and her husband Mark Morgan joined the business in 1990 and 1993 respectively. Jennifer and Mark purchased the business and Chuck and Judy entered semi-retirement in 2004. Today, Jennifer and Mark oversee a company that is much larger than Chuck and Judy ever imagined. ECLE’s catalog is now well over 50 pages and their customer list is a virtual Who’s Who in the lightning protection installation industry.
Jennifer has doubled ECLE’s brand recognition through educational seminars, national trade shows, published articles and newsletters targeted to architectural and engineering firms. Now when architects and electrical engineers are specifying a project, ECLE is now twice as likely to be referenced by name as the authority on lightning protection.
Mark has been the driving force by creating innovative manufacturing processes to improve work flow and productivity. This has quadrupled production without increasing the production staff. The need for middle management has been eliminated due to implementing a visual work flow tracking system, thereby keeping products affordable for customers. Mark serves on the board of directors for the LPI and the ULPA; he is a member of the NFPA 780 technical committee on lightning protection and he regularly attends the ICLP to keep abreast of lightning protection trends around the world. In addition, Mark is a founding member of the Lightning Safety Alliance, a non-profit, non-stock national business corporation comprised of lightning protection manufacturers, distributors and installation specialists. Mark also serves on the LSA board of directors. Jennifer serves as the continuing education coordinator and also coauthored the LSA’s Lightning Protection 101 course, which is presented to hundreds of design professionals each year.
Individually, Jennifer and Mark have been instrumental in maintaining the company’s reputation as a leader in the industry. Together, they are the reason ECLE continues to make history.