Name: Jan Sandri
Overtime: FSR was founded in 1981 by Bill Fitzsimmons, Charles Rodriguez, and Jan Sandri. While building the business, Sandri was elected mayor of Little Falls, NJ, and served as president of the Board of Health, as well as fire commissioner, and police commissioner. She’s the proud mom of Jennifer Altieri and Bill Sandri, and super-proud grandma of Billy and Faith. She is a board member of Kindness Shared Happiness Squared, a charity that assists children and animals in need.
SCN: What is your position, and what does it entail? What are your responsibilities?
JAN SANDRI: My position as president and owner of FSR is simultaneously awesome, fulfilling, and a bit scary. Ultimately it is my responsibility to develop and implement policies, processes, and strategies that affect all of FSR’s 115-plus employees regarding plans for our future and investments in our growth. I’m also very heavily involved in building and maintaining stable relationships with customers, specifiers, and suppliers—which is critical for FSR to remain strong and competitive. We have a family culture that gives us strength along with talent.
SCN: How long have you been in this position?
JS: I have been president for about 10 years. Prior to that, I was the vice president of sales and marketing.
SCN: How has your background prepared you for your role?
JS: I am fortunate enough to have been working in our exciting industry for over 40 years. I started out in integration with AV Services when “AV integration” was just beginning, and went on to found FSR. Working closely with consulting firms in New York City and with integrators, I quickly learned that listening to our customers was paramount to success. I listened, I learned, and as a company, we engineered and manufactured products that are essential to the AV world.
My nine-year political career taught me to think quickly on my feet, trust my gut, and do what is right for the people around me. That followed through to FSR and our employees, and we developed a team that is “first class, first rate.” At FSR, we have always had a diverse employee base, and I’m proud to say we have employees on our production floors and in engineering who have been with us for more than 30 years.
SCN: What are your short- and long-term goals?
JS: My most important short-range goal is to get FSR through the pandemic with as little disruption as possible. Our products are made in the USA and we continue to provide quality manufacturing and keep enough inventory to handle all projects.
The long-term goals are to create cost-effective, meaningful products to assist with Smart Building designs. We will grow our infrastructure product lines (floor, wall, table, and ceiling boxes) to handle connectivity not just in commercial spaces, but in modern offices, medical facilities, and, of course, educational facilities.
SCN: What is the greatest challenge you face?
JS: One of the greatest challenges we face is to create products that meet the demands of a constantly changing world. The workplace, classroom, and event space areas will be forever impacted not only by the “new normal” forced upon us by the COVID-19 pandemic, but also by consistently emerging technologies. What we create must meet the new demands.
Another challenge is to continue to manufacture in the United States. I strongly believe in the concept of “made in the USA.” When you call FSR, your calls are answered by our Inside Sales Team, which is trained to handle your applications and questions.
SCN: Where do you see the pro AV market heading?
JS: The pro AV market has a long and exciting life ahead of it. The world cannot exist without the AV experience. The excitement and learning experiences that AV brings to our lives, not to mention the pure enjoyment of it, ensures continued growth potential.
SCN: Are there new initiatives we are likely to see from FSR?
JS: FSR is planning new initiatives for the furniture industry, medical facilities, and our ever-changing educational and corporate environments. No matter what the venue, power and charging are always needed, as well as data distribution. To successfully work and learn, we need to be connected. But we want those connections elegantly and safely integrated into our environments.
You may not always see FSR products at work, but we are safely housing your most important connections in the walls, tables, ceilings, and floors. We are proud that FSR products are installed in spaces where people gather across the United States and around the globe.
SCN: How can systems contractors better position themselves to profit from products and/or services you have to offer?
JS: FSR is proud to be a woman-owned company, and we’re proud that our products are made here in the USA. Our integrators and specifiers have access to creative products that have earned dozens of awards and numerous patents, and our vast inventory allows for timely shipments. Our mechanical engineering team is available to customize existing products or create an entirely new one for your project. We make doing business simple and friendly, and our experienced staff will save you time and money.