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Connecting the dots to learning and leadership at Expo

Tue, 08/12/2014 - 11:06pm
Mark Dzuban, President & CEO, SCTE

It might seem a long leap from a new addition to our team to the industry’s cable engineering show of the year, but I think I can connect those dots: What the hiring of Lindsay Johnston and the program for SCTE Cable-Tec Expo have in common is the need to take leadership and learning in our industry up a notch or two.

Before we get to Cable-Tec Expo – circle Sept. 22-25 on your calendars – let me just say that if you haven’t yet met Lindsay or felt her presence, trust me on this: you will. Lindsay joined us earlier this year as senior vice president, operations, and has been a tremendous addition to our team. She’s taken on a variety of responsibilities – our new Corporate Alliance Program (CAP), SCTE organizational leadership and industry ambassadorship, among others – with a gusto that gets results.

Lindsay’s rich pedigree is on our website, but I’ll go over it here. Her stints at Verizon, Exelon’s PECO Energy and most recently with Comcast, where she was senior vice president, human resources, for Comcast Programming Properties.

Comcast turned to Lindsay when it needed someone to manage the experience for 5,000 Comcast employees who were being transitioned to NBCU policies, procedures and payroll.

Also of note is her tremendous involvement on behalf of women in the community and in our industry.

Let me tell you why that’s important: As our growing list of corporate partners integrate SCTE training and certification into their day-to-day operations, our job is to continue to upgrade the core competencies that can make SCTE a more valued partner.

Lindsay brought a combination of core skills, work ethic and experience, as well as the drive and vision we need to scale our activities as Corporate Alliance grows from three partners to encompass the entire industry.

Watching her interface with our team has been an inspiration. Whether it’s been working with Bill Schankel in marketing to bring the CAP program across the finish line, or with Lori Bower’s team to shape Cable-Tec Expo, or with Cathy Karch to fine tune our finances, Lindsay’s exceeded expectations – and they were already pretty high. What’s equally important is how she has expanded our visibility in key external areas: upgrading the visibility of our SCTE-Tuck Executive Leadership Program, working with WICT to create more opportunities for women and reaching out to her peers in the cable community.

After seeing her in action for just a few months, I can tell you that one of the things that makes Lindsay tick is this: a desire to bring out the best in others, whether it’s SCTE’s own team or the cable workforce in general. She recognizes that investing in technical education and leadership training for the cable workforce today will sharpen the industry’s competitiveness in the years to come.

All of which seems like an ideal segue to SCTE Cable-Tec Expo, which is fast approaching its Sept. 22-25 rendezvous with the Colorado Convention Center in Denver. Like Lindsay, Expo is focused on providing resources that will improve how our industry meets the needs of residential and business customers. While the agenda is being tweaked a little every day – like cable services,we never stop trying to make Expo better – Ican tell you that Comcast CTO Tony Werner and the Expo Program Committee have put together a world-class event, including: • Not-to-be-missed keynote remarks by two global thought leaders: Rob Lloyd, president, sales and development for Cisco Systems, and Mike Fries, president and CEO of Liberty Global. Tony will engage Rob in a keynote conversation during the opening session on Tuesday and will be on stage with Mike for another discussion on Wednesday.

• Our Wireless and DOCSIS 3.1 Symposium on Monday, featuring presentations by Comcast’s Jorge Salinger, Cisco’s John Chapman, CableLabs’ Belal Hamzeh, Mark Poletti and Vivek Ganti, as well as other industry experts.

• A special session headed by Comcast’s John Schanz that will provide the vendor community with further visibility into the “Energy 2020” campaign that will shape requirements for new equipment, training and other resources that will help drive continued network growth, availability and reliability.

• A record 48 workshops that will address Next-Generation Customer Experiences (Improving Operations, Defining/Redefining the Connected Home, and the role of the “Silicon Technician”); Next-Generation Video (All-IP Video, Ultra HD/HEVC/HDR, Video Portability, Next-Gen User Interfaces); and Next-Generation Networks (Architectures and Virtualized-, Cloud- and Software-Defined Networks for Gigabit Services and Beyond).

• And, of course, the networking opportunities, the exhibits of market-leading technologies and the other events that make Expo a magnet for cable engineering and operations professionals in the United States – and increasingly, worldwide.

With the launch of the Corporate Alliance Program, the rollout of the “Energy 2020” campaign and other activities, it’s been a year of accomplishment for SCTE. With Lindsay Johnston on our team and with a can’t-miss Expo on the horizon, we’re well on track to fulfilling the value proposition that the industry expects from the world’s premier cable and telecommunications engineering organization.

I look forward to seeing you in Denver!     

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