SBE Names 2023 Robert W. Flanders SBE Engineer of the Year and James C. Wulliman SBE Educator of the Year Recipients

The Society of Broadcast Engineers recognizes achievements from its members through an awards program. The annual SBE National Awards recognizes those who have contributed to the SBE, the industry or their chapters in a number of categories. Winners are presented awards at the National Awards Dinner at the annual SBE National Meeting.

The Robert W. Flanders SBE Engineer of the Year award is presented to a member who has excelled in his or her career while furthering the mission of the SBE. The 2023 recipient is Joseph Conlon of Inver Grove Heights, MN, and a current member of SBE Chapter 17 Central Minnesota. The James C. Wulliman SBE Educator of the Year award recognizes outstanding service and excellence in sharing knowledge through teaching other broadcast engineers. The 2023 recipient is Andrew Gladding, CBT, of Brooklyn, NY, and a member of SBE Chapter 15 New York City.

Conlon has been an SBE member for 17 years. He has held various roles within Chapter 17 including secretary, treasurer, assistant chair and chair. Chapter 17 nominated Conlon as its Chapter Engineer of the Year for his passion for helping others in the field of broadcast engineering. Throughout his years as an SBE Member, Conlon has introduced others to the SBE, helping their local chapter grow. He highly values volunteering and giving back to the community.

Gladding has been an SBE Member for eight years and is the secretary of Chapter 15. In his role as adjunct professor for audio production at Hofstra University, he has taken numerous steps to recruit and engage new SBE members by teaching them about the broadcasting business and engineering in particular. He is solely responsible for the addition of 40 student members to Chapter 15.

Technology Award

The SBE Awards Program also recognizes other achievements from SBE members, chapters and SBE sustaining member companies. Nautel has won the Technology Award for the GV2: Just Add Audio. GV2: Just Add Audio is a technology that dramatically simplifies the HD Radio air chain for broadcasters, synchronizes FM and HD audio streams and eliminates FM and HD main channel blend drift. Nautel’s GV2 series transmitters can host the full digital radio air chain including all HD Radio coding and all audio processing on the GV2 transmitter platform without an external equipment.

Chapter and Individual Awards

Chapters are the lifeblood of the SBE, and 2023 marks the 10th year that the Chapter Engineer of the Year Award has highlighted the achievements of members within their chapters. This year, seven chapters selected their own award recipients. Each winner will be presented with a special plaque and be recognized nationally on the SBE website and in a future issue of The Signal. The seven chapter winners also were automatically nominated for the national Robert W. Flanders SBE Engineer of the Year Award.

The SBE Wisconsin chapters and the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association have won the Best Educational Event for their Wisconsin Broadcasters Clinic held in October 2022. The clinic included three days and two nights of educational sessions. The Broadcasters Clinic started with a radio day; a combined radio, TV and IT day; and concluded with a TV day. There was also dedicated exhibit time. Several speakers represented SBE Sustaining Member companies including American Tower, Davicom, Dielectric, GatesAir, Nautel, Orban, and Telos Alliance.

Chapter 15 New York City won the Best Chapter Communication for the second year in a row. The chapter doesn’t have a traditional newsletter, but makes innovative use of multiple channels and platforms to communicate to its members. The communication channels used are an email list, the Chapter 15 website, sbe15.com, a Twitter and Facebook page and a Zoom account.

Donald Smith has won Best Technical Article, Book or Paper for his paper, ATSC 3.0 and Public Broadcasting, a Case for Flash Cut, which was presented at the 2023 NAB Show.

Statistical Awards

These awards are determined with statistical information based on Dec. 31, 2022, figures on file at the SBE National Office. Chapters with 26 members or fewer are Class A. Chapters with 27 members or more are Class B.
Percentage Growth of New Members:
Class A: 111 Huntsville
Class B: 15 New York City

Highest Percentage of Certified Members:
Class A: 115 Southern Idaho
Class B: 131 Inland Empire

Highest Percentage of Member Attendance at Meetings:
Class A: 60 Richmond
Class B: 39 Tampa Bay Area

All the winners will be recognized at the SBE Awards Dinner to be held on Sept. 28 during the SBE National Meeting, held in conjunction with the Midwest Broadcast & Multimedia Technology Conference in Columbus, OH. Nominations for the 2024 awards will open in February. Nominations for individual and chapter awards are considered for the time period between June 1 of the previous year and May 31 of the current year. Statistical awards are based on SBE data as of Dec. 31 of the previous year.

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