About Us

In business since 1994, Best Defense provides comprehensive fire and security solutions throughout Wisconsin from locations in Madison, New Berlin, and Appleton. Offering in-house design for prompt turnaround, we service approximately 3,500 accounts throughout the state and can provide you with high quality service, inspections, monitoring and installations of Fire Protection Sprinkler Systems, Fire Alarms ,Security Systems, Access Control and Camera Systems.

We are fully staffed with two NICET IV fire alarm professionals, a NICET III, and several NICET techs.

Best Defense also offers 24-hour service with highly trained technicians available around the clock. And, because we are locally owned, we can provide you with the very personalized service that has our customers recommending us to their friends.

Our Locations

(Madison Area)
300 Moravian Valley Road Waunakee, WI 53597

W6243 Contractor Drive
Suite B
Appleton, WI 54914

St. Germain Remote Branch



24 Hour Service
Office Hours Mon-Fri 7a-4:30p


Our Story

Best Defense is a growing market leader with over 25 years of history providing stability for our growth!

Best Defense is owned and led by Carter Rierson, a 30 year industry veteran. In the life-safety industry since the age of 20, Carter already had three year’s experience under his belt when he started Best Defense in 1994. Since then the business has grown, from a startup in the garage of his rented duplex to three offices in Wisconsin, with several thousand customers and millions of dollars per year in sales.

Best Defense has won numerous awards and recognitions including Honeywell Farenhyt’s Dealer of the Year in 2014, and inclusion in Inc. Magazine’s Fastest Growing Private Companies in America for 2015 and 2016 as the 20th fastest growing privately owned company in Wisconsin.

Carter is certified as a NICET Level IV fire alarm specialist and is one of only three fire alarm / sprinkler specialists in the State of Wisconsin to hold NFPA’s Certified Fire Protection Specialists (CFPS) certification. The CFPS credential is internationally recognized as a mark of achievement within the fire protection field. As a NICET IV certified fire alarm engineering technician (SET), Carter works closely with Best Defense’s design team and alarm installation manager to insure compliant and informative alarm designs and submittals. Carter served five years on the Honeywell Fire Protection Farenhyt / Gamewell-FCI distributor advisory board, providing input on market and product trends.

As part of Carter’s commitment to the ongoing improvement to life-safety he currently serves on the NFPA 101 and NFPA 5000 Technical Committee for Board and Care Facilities (Assisted Living), assisting in developing new life-safety codes for assisted living facilities on a national level. Carter also contributes his personal growth to ongoing training. Researching and utilizing codes and standards such as IBC, IEBC, NFPA 72, NEC 70, NFPA 13, and NFPA 25, Carter utilizes his experience in consulting not only with customers, but also with architects, engineers, and code enforcement officials. He has taught several seminars on fire codes as well as sponsored training for Best Defense employees and fire code officials throughout the state. He has been interviewed several times for life-safety trade magazines and has contributed as an author for articles. He regularly meets with other alarm and sprinkler contractors throughout the country to share ideas on quality, growth and sales.

To grow Best Defense at a rate worthy of Inc. 5000 recognition, Carter has recruited and trained other industry professionals including three managers with 10 to 30 years of experience in the industry.

Best Defense grew from an alarm company to a full service life-safety systems provider. Under his leadership, Best Defense Fire Protection has grown to several million dollars in sales per year in just over six years! The sprinkler division continues to grow with the recruitment of licensed sprinkler fitters and new fitters through the Best Defense Associated Builders and Contractors apprenticeship program.

Locally Owned with Three Branches – We live where you live!

Best Defense is just the right size to fit your needs! We’re not too small to work on huge projects, but we’re small enough to offer you personalized and professional service. We listen to your needs, consult on the codes, discuss options, and provide you with the best option for your needs! With three local offices we’re in your market, able to offer local, prompt service. With dozens of remote employees throughout the state, we’re in your town. We know you, your concerns, and your fire marshal and understand what it takes to make your project successful.

Do It Right – Or Don’t Do It!

You count on your life-safety company to protect you and yours! That means a lot to us, from keeping your family safe while you travel to protecting your pet from fire when nobody is home. Or perhaps your business depends on effective security and fire protection to remain open and viable. Whatever the reason, it’s important that you choose a company that takes your protection as seriously as you do. In our industry the worst-case scenario isn’t liability, it’s loss of life or property. It’s important that the company you choose has the experience, training, and product to do the job right!

At Best Defense our motto is Do It Right – Or Don’t Do It! This philosophy is emphasized daily and reflected in the quality of our sales, designs, installations, and service. We review and discuss not only our greatest work, but examples of where we strive to improve as well.

4 P’s — Best Defense’s growth is built upon four principals

People: Rather than concentrating on growing our business, we concentrate on growing our people. From the top down the focus of the President is to grow managers and the focus of the managers is to grow technicians and employees. If we can help our employees grow, they’ll help us grow! This is an ongoing process at Best Defense and we’ve got an Inc. 5000 Growth award and one hell of a team to attest to its effectiveness!

Process: Best Defense concentrates on selling the products that we’re the best with. 22 years of experience have taught us that we perform best if we limit our products to what we know, and refine the process with which we deliver those products. With Best Defense you can be sure that if we sell you a product, we have complete confidence in it and have franchised the methods we use to deliver the product to you.

Profit: Best Defense does not pursue sales simply for the sake of selling. It seems in today’s market that many companies are all about sales, sales, sales! Though we have great sales volume, we focus only on those that provide great value to our customer while also providing a reasonable return to Best Defense. Companies that focus solely on sales find themselves cash-strapped, unable to train, properly staff, or even deliver what was promised. Best Defense focuses on the product, the process, and efficient installation, benefitting both the company and the customer.

Passion: Best Defense implements our passion through employees who love what they do. They have a passion for the product, from design to installation, from sales to service. Our great team works well together and is always expanding, with access to great benefits and opportunities for growth.


Best Defense named #2220 among list of 5000 top growth companies for 2015 and 2016!

Best Defense among local companies honored with placement on Inc. Magazines list of fastest growing private companies!

Best Defense named Dealer of the Year.

Best Defense gets national recognition for our work with the Tudor Oaks Retirement Community.

And Many more