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2009-2010 SBE National Award Winners Announced (July 30, 2010)

The Society of Broadcast Engineers has announced the winners of its 2009-2010 SBE National Awards.  Winners will be recognized at the Society’s National Awards Dinner on October 27 in Madison, Wis. The event is part of the annual SBE National Meeting, which is being held in conjunction with SBE Chapter 24 and the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association (WBA) at the Madison Marriott West Hotel.

The winner of the SBE Broadcast Engineer of the Year Awardis John Luff.  Luff has been a member SBE Broadcast Engineer of the Year John Luffof SBE since 1984. Luff was nominated for this prestigious award for the work he has done in the broadcast engineering industry as well as on a local level within SBE Chapter 20, Pittsburgh Pa. Luff is currently a media technology consultant and has his own company, HD Consulting, in Sewickley, Pa. His resume includes senior vice president business development at AZCAR, founder and president of Synergistic Technologies Inc., engineering manager at TPC Communications, as well as volunteer services as chairman of SBE Chapter 20 and conference vice president at SMPTE.

Recently, Luff has provided new energy and leadership to his chapter, which was facing declining participation. He changed the meetings from a monthly format in order to have meetings whenever an important topic and expert presenters were available to present more detailed technology. He accomplished this by using his significant contacts to arrange for industry experts to present at his chapter meetings. Over 70 members attended the event he organized on 3D technology. He held the event at NEP Broadcasting in Pittsburgh, Pa. and had presenters George Hoover, CTO from NEP and representatives from PACE 3D cameras. To increase participation, Luff set up a Yahoo Groups site to provide quick communications to local members.

Recipients of the SBE Broadcast Engineer of the Year Award are recognized for making significant contributions to the field of broadcast engineering or for furthering the goals and objectives of the Society. They must be members of the Society and are nominated by their peers.

The 2009-2010 SBE Educator of the Year Awardwill be presented to Charles ‘Buc’ Fitch, P.E., CPBE, AMD. Fitch SBE Educator of the Year Charles 'Buc' Fitch, P.E., CPBE, AMDhas been a member of SBE since 1975 and certified since 1976. Fitch was nominated for his 40-year-plus contributions to educating the industry through articles, presentations and committee work, not only in mainstream technical areas of broadcasting but also important adjacent technologies such as National Electrical Code (NEC), project management and collateral regulations.

Fitch has been an important contributor to industry publications. In this past year, he has continued a successful recurring feature in Radio World called “Certification Corner,” which is aimed at helping readers understand and prepare for the SBE certification exams. With this feature his goals are to educate and familiarize exam takers with the scope of the certification exams, motivate potential candidates and reinforce the professional aspects of the SBE Certification Program. To read Fitch’s “Certification Corner” visit www.rwonline.com/section/certification-corner.

Another series of articles called “Milestones” utilizes his passion for the history of the industry and the roles of broadcast engineers. In this series he looks back and reflects on important technological achievements in communications on both the broadcast and consumer sides. He has written on such diverse topics as the Marti RPU receiver and the proliferation of early automobile radio receivers. In one stretch he profiled several 1 kW transmitter models that helped change the industry. “Milestones” can be read at www.rwonline.com/section/milestones.

The award for Best Technical Article, Book or Program by a SBE Membergoes to Doug Irwin, CPBE, AMD, DRBfor his article, “The Future of Radio” in Radio magazine’s December 2009 issue. To read Irwin’s article, visit http://radiomagonline.com/features/radio_trends_technologythe_future/.

Local chapters have also earned awards based on their own achievements. Some categories recognize two chapters, based on their size. Class A represents those chapters whose membership is less than the national median (31 or fewer members), while Class B are those chapters that have membership greater than the national median (32 or more members).

Best Chapter Website:

Chapter 54: Hampton Roads, Va.


Best Regional Conference:

Chapter 24: Madison, Wis.

Best Chapter Newsletter:

Class A: Chapter 24: Madison, Wis.

Most Certified

A) Chapter 140 Ithaca, N.Y.

B) Chapter 131 Inland Empire, Calif.      

Greatest Percentage Growth

A) Chapter 136 Rio Grande, Texas

B) Chapter 144, Hong Kong     

Highest Member Attendance

A) Chapter 143 Mid MO, Missouri  

B) Chapter 76, Eugene, Ore.    

Our thanks to the SBE National Awards Committee, chaired by Jim Leifer, CPBE and committee members Leonard Charles, CPBE, Bill Ryall and Marcelo Sanchez, CPBE.




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