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Guiding Lights

Television is the perfect business for men and women gifted with the "vision thing," the ability to see a problem and solve it or see an opportunity and make history around it.

That's why, for seven years, B&C has used the NAB convention to recognize the technical wizards of the business with our Technology Leadership awards. This year, we honor six professionals who plugged into the medium and gave it a great history and an exciting future.

These are the leaders of equipment manufacturers and broadcast and cable companies who scan the horizon for new ways to deliver better products and pictures. If there is one thing all of this year's honorees share, it is that ability to imagine what's next and what's needed.

Media General's Ardell Hill, for example, made sure that technological change never rips the heart and soul out of a TV station by limiting its localism.

For Chuck Pagano, vision meant spending 25 years at ESPN and eventually putting the network front and center in HDTV.

Mike D'Amore, while at BTS, oversaw one of the industry's most important developments in servers with Media Pool and later in digital cinema with the Viper camera.

Andy Setos, on the network side, fought for a broadcast flag and worked to bring stereo audio to a fledgling cable network called MTV.

Larry Thorpe spent two decades at Sony serving as one of the true champions of HDTV, singing its praises around the globe and changing skeptics into believers.

For Larry Kaplan, vision meant taking a new look at test and measurement for Tektronix in the late 1970s and creating a device that, 25 years later, is still the standard.

On the pages that follow, Ken Kerschbaumer profiles our six award winners.