Don Bird, Lawo, VP, Business Development
Don Bird is vice president of business development for Lawo AG, a provider of IP-based infrastructure solutions including audio, video, network monitoring, and control systems. Throughout his career, Bird has held key roles for companies driving industry-wide technology conversions in broadcast, electronic music, film, and video post-production. Currently, he is responsible for global business development including Lawo’s channel partner program and development of strategic initiatives in support of Lawo’s role in driving the media and entertainment industry transition to IP technologies.
Eric Bolten, Zixi, VP of Business Development
Eric Bolten is a leading expert in the digital video space, advising the world’s largest, most complex, and most demanding customers from media and sports entities to Fortune 1000 corporations. His career spans executive, sales, marketing, and business development roles in markets around the globe including Australia, Asia, South America, Europe, and the United States. Prior to Zixi, Bolten worked for Com Tech, PictureTel, Vela Research, Venaca, and Signiant.
Gordon Castle, Eurosport, SVP, Technology and Operations
A vastly experienced technology professional, Gordon Castle oversees Discovery’s EMEA technology and operations including Eurosport’s Global Technology and Operations teams based in Paris. Castle is responsible for developing, defining, and implementing the long-term technology strategy of Eurosport, Discovery’s leading sports brand.
Prior to joining Eurosport, Castle held senior positions at telecommunications company Ericsson, latterly as head of strategy development, portfolio, and capital and resource allocation.
Castle has over 25 years of experience working in the media industry which has included roles such as director of entertainment, media, and communications at PricewaterhouseCoopers; SVP and head of CNN technology responsible for the news group’s technology strategy, implementation, and training; and SVP – senior technology fellow for Turner Broadcasting.
Throughout his career, Castle has helped his organizations embrace innovation by conceiving, planning, and executing large-scale initiatives that have changed organizations and the way people work. This vision and understanding has contributed to his reputation as a leader in his field.
An American by birth, Castle is based in London, UK.
Josh Glaze, Freelance EVS and Hawk-Eye Operator
Josh Glaze is a freelance EVS and Hawk-Eye operator based in Tulsa, OK. During his 20-year career, he has worked for various sports broadcasters including Golf Channel, Fox, CBS, NBC, and ESPN/ABC.
Michael Harabin, Gravity Media – USA, President
As president of U.S. operations for Gravity Media, Michael Harabin is responsible for managing day-to-day operations of the business. Harabin is also responsible for strategic direction setting pertaining to revenue growth, business expansion, workflow optimization, and technology roadmapping. He is a recognized industry leader in the area of applying innovative solutions to remote, live event sports productions.
Before joining Gravity Media (then branded Gearhouse Broadcast), Harabin was part of the founding executive team at the Pac-12 Networks managing engineering, operations, and media management efforts leading to the successful launch of the networks. Prior to Pac-12 Networks, he held management positions at the Tennis Channel, the Italian State Broadcaster RAI, DirecTV, and NBC. Harabin holds a B.A. (Seton Hall University) and M.B.A. (Pepperdine University) degrees.
Rob Hedrick, National Hot Rod Association, Director of Post-Production and Supervising Producer
Rob Hedrick is the director of post-production and supervising producer for the National Hot Rod Association, where he leads a team creating deliverables for Fox Sports and the NHRA’s OTT platform he helped to create. With more than 20 years of television experience, Hedrick has pioneered live streaming since 2004, delivering live coverage of breaking news and weather events, including Hurricane Katrina. Since the pandemic, Hedrick has transformed his apartment in Downtown LA into an online editing suite to remotely support the NHRA on Fox’s telecast.
Jim Jachetta, VidOvation, CTO and Co-Founder
With more than 25 years of experience in designing, integrating, and delivering video transmission, contribution, and distribution systems, Jim Jachetta is the driving force behind VidOvation’s world-class technology that makes the “impossible” and “never been done before” a viable solution within daily business operations. Using modern, easy to support technology, Jachetta and the talented VidOvation team creatively designs, implements, and supports wireless, cellular, IPTV, video over IP, and fiber optics installations that meet an organization’s business goals, and at a price point that fits any size, scope, and budget.
James Japhet, Hawk-Eye N.A., Managing Director
James Japhet has been with Hawk-Eye for 13 years. He started off on the cricket side of the business before running the creative direction of the company. Japhet has been based in New York for the past four years, having previously set up and run both the Japanese and Australian offices. Given his degree in history from the University of Manchester, it is no surprise he ended up in the world of sports technology.
Ken Kerschbaumer, SVG, Executive Director, Editorial
Ken Kerschbaumer is co-executive director of editorial services for the Sports Video Group and SVG Europe. He was a co-founder of SVG along with Paul Gallo and Marty Porter in 2005 and has been writing about how sports networks and leagues use video and audio technology to deliver a quality TV experience since 1991. Kerschbaumer began his career in 1991 at Television Broadcast magazine before joining Cahners where he was founding editor of Digital Broadcasting magazine. In 2000, he joined Broadcasting & Cable magazine as senior editor of technology where he covered all aspects of broadcasting, cable, and internet content creation and distribution.
Prashant Khanna, Star Sports Network, Vice President, Broadcast Technology and Operations
Prashant Khanna is a generalist and technocrat with a successful career in the sports, entertainment, and media industry spanning over 15 years.
PK – as he is fondly known, has worked with major broadcasters and media houses like News Corporation, NDTV, Turner Broadcasting, Reliance Media Works, Castle Media Asia , and Encompass Digital Media. He is also an ex-mentor/advisor to many sports businesses, such as the Give for Sports Foundation, India Sports Jobs, the player agency, International sports ticketing, and Nation of Sport.
Khanna is busy with changing the sports broadcast and technology ecosystem in India by bringing in cutting-edge innovation and workflows at Star Sports. He is an all sports fan that loves traveling around the world to watch live sports. Khanna holds a double major in International sports business and sponsorship and marketing from Johan Cruyff Institute, Barcelona. In addition, he has a Football Grassroots certification from FAS, is currently pursuing sports journalism, and is a Manchester United shareholder.
Josh Liemer, VISTA Worldlink, President
Josh Liemer is the president of VISTA Worldlink, a media solutions company servicing the television industry since 1988. His leadership and foresight enables VISTA to secure multi-year clients while utilizing creative techniques to execute the workload. Bringing a modern approach and flare to every event and project, Liemer has positioned VISTA as a leader in emerging technology offerings, while still advancing the core businesses of VISTA. He also executive produces global major events around the world including sports, news, and corporate and faith-based content.
Liemer was the executive producer of the short film Sweet 13, a nominee for best film at the 2014 L.A. Shorts fest and the executive producer of the feature documentary Miami Basel: Art’s Winter Playground, an official selection of the 2019 Miami Film Festival.
Liemer graduated in film and video from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.
Steve McKenna, Studio Network Solutions, Director of Sales
Steve McKenna is director of sales at Studio Network Solutions (SNS), the world leader in workflow storage servers for professional media teams. He joined SNS nine years ago and maintains a deep understanding of the needs of broadcast, VFX, post-production, and professional video and audio teams worldwide.
Chuck Meyer, Grass Valley, Chief Technical Officer
Chuck Meyer was appointed CTO of production at Grass Valley, a Belden Brand in 2013 and is responsible for advanced technology development for live production and networking products. Prior to joining Grass Valley, Meyer was president and CEO of NVISION where he led pioneering development of HD television routing and distribution equipment, as well as digital audio technologies during a span of 22 years. Miranda acquired NVISION in 2008.
Meyer has worked in various roles including engineering, operations, technical management, strategic marketing, and executive C-level management. He rejoined Grass Valley with the objective of providing technical leadership during the transition of the broadcast industry to IP and cloud computing technologies. Meyer’s technical expertise is focused primarily on data transport and clock-recovery technologies. However, he has an extensive background in IC circuit and CPU design. Meyer holds over 32 patents.
In addition to working with the Berkeley design team on the world’s first monolithic RISC microprocessor, led by Professors David Patterson and Carlo Sequin, Meyer is proud to state that he started his career in high technology in 1979 with Atari at their research and development laboratory, code named Cyan Engineering, and located in Grass Valley, California.
Meyer was a Tektronix Foundation graduate fellow at the University of California at Berkeley, where he graduated with the highest honors. He is a lifetime member of Phi Beta Kappa and Tau Beta PI academic honor societies. He was also president of the UC Berkeley Tau Beta Pi chapter.
Damien Nagle, Net Insight, Nimbra Product Manager
Damien Nagle is the product manager for the Nimbra MSR series of products at Net Insight and has served in various technical and commercial roles at Net Insight since 2007. Presently, Nagle leads the Nimbra MSR series of products through the implementation of an open, IP-first virtualization, cloud, and automation direction.
He holds a Bachelor of Science in computer systems from the University of Limerick, Ireland and works at Net Insight headquarters in Stockholm, Sweden.
Gary Olson, GHO Group, Principal
Gary Olson is an independent consultant in the broadcast media industry and an active practitioner in IP-based broadcast design. He has been an evangelist in the transition to IP and considered to be a media technology thought leader and industry expert. Olson is a technology architect, project executive, and media technology advisor specializing in the transition from traditional media technology, workflows, and business processes to the computer and network centric IP and file technologies and workflows. Olson has substantial experience working with project sponsors and stakeholders to help them understand the changes associated with digital media platforms and file-based workflows.
Olson has a considerable background with practical experience in the analysis, selection, and uses of emerging technology. He is also an innovator in media technologies and broadcast design. Olson advises on the selection and best use of technology in the migration and transition from traditional media to IP and file-based technology enabling distribution to the various delivery platforms in broadcast, broadband, mobile, portable multimedia, and On-Demand media technology.
Olson’s book, Planning and Designing the IP Broadcast Facility – A New Puzzle to Solve is considered by the industry as one of the most comprehensive technical guidelines for making sound decisions implementing IP technology. He is a regular contributor on The Broadcast Bridge educating the industry on IP technology and file-based workflow. Olson has created courses for SBE University and IABM online University on IP facility design. He is one of the contributing authors of the 2016 SBE Broadcast Engineering Manual. Olson is frequently asked to present and moderate discussions on IP understanding.
GHO Group was honored as one of the “10 Most Innovative Media Companies” in 2018. Olson was recognized in 2016 as one of the top 20 media CIO’s and then in 2017 as one of the “30 Innovative CEO’s of 2017 to Watch”.
Dan Pisarski, LiveU, VP of Technology
Dan Pisarski is an engineering leader in the online, video, and broadcast industries with over 20 years of experience. With a broad background in software and hardware design, product development, research and analysis, and quality assurance, Pisarski understands how to take complex technology solutions from inception to delivery and beyond. As a tech visionary, Pisarski is a recurring contributor to articles and white papers communicating both practical know-how and forward-thinking knowledge to help bring the live video industry to the next level. Pisarski is also a frequent presenter sharing his technological expertise at industry conferences around the country with sessions ranging from 5G and open-source solutions to bringing linear channel infrastructure online for OTT services.
Scott Rothenberg, NEP Group, SVP, Technology and Asset Management
Scott Rothenberg is NEP’s senior vice president of technology and asset management and cho-chair of the NEP Office of the CTO. In his current role, Rothenberg focuses on understanding and matching clients’ needs with NEP’s technical capabilities and capacity. He works tirelessly across all of NEP’s divisions to ensure that the right equipment is always in the right place—and that NEP is always working to develop technical solutions to meet emerging client needs. In addition, Rothenberg is responsible for improving NEP’s internal operations and processes, and works with key vendors to source and develop specialized equipment.
Rothenberg started with NEP in 1995 as a maintenance engineer after working as a freelance technician, providing engineering and operational support for television crews and solving all manner of problems under the pressure of live television. Rothenberg has been a member of three Emmy Award-winning NEP technical crews (twice for NASCAR and once for PokerDom). He also won a CableACE Award in 1995 for his work on Ripken’s 2131st Game for HTS.
Tom Sahara, Media Technologist and Advisor
Tom Sahara is a seasoned technical operations executive with decades of extensive experience in live production. His capacity for managing complex technical projects and developing reliable support organizations for mission critical operations has established Sahara as an industry stalwart. Sahara serves on several industry advisory boards and maintains strong connections to the industry as a media technologist and advisor.
Previously, Sahara was the vice president of operations and technology for Turner Sports where he oversaw the studio and remote broadcast facilities for Turner Sports’ live event and online properties. A 21 year Turner veteran, he managed all technical systems for the Goodwill Games, the transition from SDTV to HDTV with 5.1 surround sound, and the relocation of NBATV from Secaucus to Atlanta. Sahara also led the development of multi-camera live streaming and live VR productions. He played a key role in Turner’s production collaboration with CBS Sports on events like March Madness and the PGA Championships including covering selected games of the 2019 March Madness Tournament in 1080p HDR.
Prior to joining Turner, Sahara served as a transmission manager for the 1994 World Cup and as a senior technical manager for the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. He also managed the host technical operations of various venues of the 2000 Sydney Summer Games and 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Games.
Sahara served as Chairman of the DTV Audio Group from 2012-2015 and in 2014, he was appointed to the Board of the SPSG. Sahara was also appointed to chairman of the SVG Advisory Board from 2013 to 2018.
Robert Szabó-Rowe, The Switch, SVP, Engineering and Product Management
Robert Szabó-Rowe brings more than 25 years of senior executive management experience to The Switch across the technology, media, and telecommunications sector. In his role at The Switch, Szabó-Rowe takes the strategic lead in the creation and delivery of best-in-class products and services across the company’s entire live production and transmission portfolio, driving growth and innovation – including MIMiC, the on-demand cloud-based production-as-a-service offering.
Szabó-Rowe previously served as executive vice president and general manager of live production and infrastructure for Snell Advanced Media (SAM), responsible for the company’s live broadcast solutions and its migration to IP. Previously, he held roles as CTO for Cambridge Positioning Systems, and vice president of network design and technology for Aerial Communications (now part of T-Mobile).