The TSP Above and Beyond Awards

The Above & Beyond Awards were created by the Technical Standards Council (TSC) to celebrate those volunteers that have made a significant contribution or effort that advances the Technical Standards Program. Individuals are nominated by their peers within the Technical Standards Program and winners are voted on by the TSC and the Working Group Chairs. The TSP exists because hundreds of individuals from across the industry volunteer their expertise and significant amounts of time throughout the year to write standards that increase safety, solve problems, and make life easier.

2020 Recipients
Ethan Gilson
Rigging Working Group

Ethan was praised for his expert knowledge of rigging and his unique approach to both analyzing rigging challenges and coming up with their answers. His method of evaluating the relevance of a subject and converting it into an ANSI accredited rigging standard is extraordinary. Ethan's enthusiasm about the TSP has also inspired many people to volunteer, which has helped the program flourish.

Wayne Howell
Control Protocols Working Group

A long-time consistent contributor to the CPWG, Wayne was lauded for being a task group leader on the E1.20 Remote Device Management (RDM) revision project. Working late hours across international time zones, Wayne has demonstrated exceptional leadership in guiding the task group and has exhibited an admirable determination to make certain that every voice is heard without bias with the goal of consensus in mind.

Reid Neslage
Rigging Working Group

Reid was commended for the vast knowledge and wealth of experience he brought to the TSP. Further, he was applauded for being one of the "true gentlemen" in our industry because his immense dedication to the program was borne purely from passion, without agenda.

2019 Recipients
Joseph Jeremy
Stage Machinery Working Group

As co-chair of the Stage Machinery Working Group, Joseph Jeremy was cited for having been the principal author of the controls section of ANSI E1.42 - Entertainment Technology—Design, Installation, and Use of Orchestra Pit Lifts as well as significant contributions to a new standard currently in development - BSR E1.64 - Stage Machinery Motion Control.
Roger Lattin
Control Protocols Working Group

Roger Lattin had been involved in the ESTA Technical Standards Program since November 1999—20 years. He was often the first person to greet new attendees. Roger co-hosted the “Power Breakfast,” an informal meal the morning of Electrical Power Working Group meeting days, to help new attendees to the program feel welcome.
Chris Schmidt
Event Safety Working Group

Chris Schmidt was lauded for having kept the Event Safety Rigging Task Group on track through many challenging tasks. Event Safety Rigging is a complicated subject that needs to distill down numerous technical requirements to the widest variety of Event Safety standard readers. The subject is elusive to many event promoters and planners and it has been the daunting task of the group to find the precise wording in order to assure the reader's comprehension of this most important subject.
Peter Willis
Control Protocols Working Group

Peter has been an active member of the CPWG for almost 20 years and has contributed significantly to many of its control standards. Peter has also provided exceptional leadership in gathering various manufacturers equipment that use CPWG control standards to demonstrate the compatibility and usefulness of these protocols to the attendees of various conferences, tradeshows, and interoperability plugfests in the United States and Europe.
2018 Recipients
Sam Kearney
Control Protocols Working Group

Sam was cited for having been “dropped into the E1.33 task group and immediately started pulling more than his fair share of the weight. Sam continued to pull the entire task group and document forward. He even brought the first wide reaching implementation of the standard to the Plugfest! He's a joy to work with and truly believes in building consensus, even when he disagrees.”
Art Wanuch
Electrical Power Working Group

Art was cited for having “been a strong, supportive and tireless leader in the development of the single-conductor feeder cable standard, keeping focus on the objective of the creation of this standard over an exceptional number of public reviews while guiding the task group to respond appropriately and substantively to all raised objections.” Art currently serves as the chair of EESA, the Entertainment Electrical Safety Association, in Canada.
Steve Serafin
Floors Working Group

Steve was cited for having been “instrumental in developing ANSI E1.60, Guidelines for the Use of Raked Stages in Live Performance Environments. This standard provides guidance for the use of raked stages in live performance environments to mitigate the risks for the protection of actors and technicians.” Steve took on a considerable role in moving the task group forward, producing a quality American National Standard in almost record time. Steve is a Product Liability Specialist for Chubb Group of Insurance.
Keith Sklar
Floors Working Group

Keith was also cited for having been “instrumental in developing ANSI E1.60, Guidelines for the Use of Raked Stages in Live Performance Environments. Keith went above and beyond to bring years of experience and knowledge to the creation of a standards document that will help protect performers and technicians working on raked stages. Keith’s willingness to jump into the world of drafting technical standards concurrent with his role as a Business Representative at Actors’ Equity Association is exemplary.
Elmer Veith
Rigging Working Group

Elmer was also cited for “pushing standards into completion in a very short time, organizing his task groups, and attending just about every single meeting. Elmer is extremely knowledgeable in the rigging field, especially truss and hoists, and he uses that expertise to create thorough and complete standards.”

2017 Recipients
Scott Blair
Control Protocols Working Group

Scott was cited as spending “countless hours and personal resources supporting the standards making process.  He has authored and led the efforts on significant portions of several already-published standards and he continues to contribute to those currently in progress. Scott has always provided leadership, technical expertise, and materials in support of standards development.” (Presented by Michael Lay (l) and Milton Davis (r), CPWG Co-Chairs)
Eddie Kramer
Electrical Power Working Group

Eddie was cited as having been a “tireless contributor to the Technical Standards Program serving on many different committees and Working Groups, including the Technical Standards Council.  Eddie is not only involved with ESTA but also serves as a representative for the entertainment industry to the NFPA (NFPA 70E) and the IEEE.” (Presented by Mitch Hefter (l), EPWG Chair)

Steve Walker
Rigging Working Group

Steve was cited as being “soft-spoken in meetings, but we all quiet down when he speaks because we all want to hear what he has to say. His contributions are immense and vital to our work. Steve graciously contributes in ways that help more of us to understand.” (Presented by Christine Kaiser, RWG Co-Chair)

2015 Recipients
E1.43 Flying Performer Task group
Rigging Working Group

Members Mark Ager, Dana Bartholomew, Joe Champelli, Bill Gorlin (Chair), Rod Haney, Dan Lisowski, Joe McGeough, and Orestes Mihaly. A standards project for flying performers was begun in 1997 and, after much hard work, abandoned in 2004. Realizing there was still a need for a standard Bill Gorlin and the E1.43 Task Group initiated a new project in 2013 dealing with the some of the same subject matter and, due to their hard work, commitment and dedication, were able to successfully complete this difficult and sometimes contentious project.
Tyrone Mellon
Electrical Power Working Group

As a significant contributor to ANSI E1.24, Dimensional Requirements for Stage Pin Connectors and the task group leader for ANSI E1.19, Recommended Practice for the Use of Class A Ground-Fault Circuit Interrupters Tyrone was cited for "volunteering hundreds of hours in pursuit of important interoperability and safety standards that have made significant contributions to the safety and well-being of the people in our industry. Ty has done so much of the heavy lifting of actual standards writing, comment resolution and draft creation for the Electrical Power Working Group. He has significantly advanced and strengthened the Technical Standards Program."
Peter Scheu and Duane Wilson
Stage Lifts Working Group

Peter and Duane serve as principle and alternate voting members for ASTC and have been involved since the working group's inception." Together they have consistently coordinated their efforts and schedules to ensure attendance at meetings and to facilitate collaboration on homework assignments. We can always count on one or both of them to be there when we need them, and they each volunteer to take on assignments - sometimes taking on different assignments to help share the overall workload. They were both adamantly supportive of keeping the working group going at a time when its future was uncertain."

2014 Recipients
Eric johnson
Control Protocols Working Group

Eric was nominated as “a rare treasure who can present the most complex subject in a manner that allows the novice to understand without any hint of condescension.  Through his involvement in the CPWG’s events for manufacturers and developers to test entertainment control products for interoperability (“Plugfests”) we have all seen him offering valuable assistance to each and every attendee.”
Jason Potterf
Control Protocols Working Group

Jason was cited for being instrumental in the development of the E1.33, Transport of ANSI E1.20 messages in an E1.31 Environment as well as assisting in the organization of web conferences for the Control Protocols Working Group and its task groups.
Richard Nix
Rigging Working Group

Richard was nominated for his “tireless work for the Rigging Working Group, the E1.4-1 Manual Counterweight Rigging Task Group, and the Stage Lifts Working Group. His logical, methodical writing style have made our standards more concise and his depth of knowledge is welcomed by all involved.”
Larry Schoeneman
Technical Standards Council

Larry was recognized for his tireless efforts to bring in financial support for the Technical Standards Program which is dependent on funding from the industry to carry out its important work.

2013 Recipients
Bill Ellis
Control Protocols Working Group

Bill has, over the last several years, put in an extraordinary amount of work in the preparation, setup, programming, and presentation of the Protocols section of the PLASA booth at LDI culminating this year in the new "Standards on the Stage" area.
Simon Newton
Control Protocols Working Group

Simon was recognized for his tireless commitment to furthering the progress of Control Protocols. He has made major contributions to numerous standards, authored articles, participated on panels, assisted with marketing activities, and developed the open source RDM test suite software dedicated to furthering protocol compliance.
Steve Terry
Electrical Power Working Group

Steve worked closely with Underwriters Laboratories for more than three years to get the ANSI/PLASA E1.24 Pin Connector standard to be the first PLASA standard to be adopted by UL (as an integral part of the UL498 standard) a major milestone in the history of the TSP. Additionally, Steve’s heroic efforts on UL1691 succeeded in getting the bi-national CANENA committee to change the standard to accept current industry-standard single-pole connectors.
Dan Culhane
Rigging Working Group

Dan was recognized for his exemplary dedication and commitment to creating quality standards. His nomination speaks volumes as it was made by a direct competitor who wanted to acknowledge the value of Dan’s contributions and participation on the Working Group.
Christine Kaiser
Rigging Working Group

Chris has approached every project she's worked on with determination and tenacity and was instrumental in moving the E1.6 series of standards forward as well as E1.4. She's now pushing through with the Theatre Inspections document. Christine was particularly cited for her level of preparation for meetings, which allows her to make significant contributions to all discussions.

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