Lawrenceville-based International Safety Instruments (ISI) has targeted Russia and Eastern Europe as new markets with the greatest potential for its respiratory protection equipment.

Patricia Villalon-Pleva, international sales manager at ISI, told GlobalFax during a telephone interview last week that the company already exports heavily with 70% of its international sales going to South America and 30% to Asia.

ISI’s owner, Donald W. Dawson, was named the 1999 Small Business-Person of the Year by the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce on June 18. Mr. Dawson is to compete with a chance at representing Georgia for the National Small Business-Person of the Year who will be selected in the fall.

Under the motto “Innovative Technology Made Simple,” ISI has made products for fire service and industrial applications since 1981.

ISI’s original product, the Ranger SCBA (self-contained breathing apparatus), has been improved continuously over the years. The most recent Viking model has an integrated electronic unit.  ISI also manufactures a thermal imaging camera for the fire service.

Ms. Villalon-Pleva said that with the assistance of the Georgia Department of Industry, Trade and Tourism, ISI has established 450 distributors around the world.

She also said that the company has not entered EU markets, however, because of established competition and separate certification requirements. ISI was awarded ISO 9001 certification, an international standard, last year, and is in the process of meeting the European requirements.

For more information, Ms. Villalon-Pleva may be reached by calling at (770) 962-2552 or send a fax to (770) 963-2797.  The company’s Web site may be found at