White Plains, New York —Nov 2, 2005
Who Will SMPTE Honor This Year?
SMPTE has announced the award winners for outstanding achievement in the motion
imaging industry. The Annual Honors and Awards ceremony and reception will be
held Thursday, November 10, 2005 at the Hilton, New York.
This ceremony is one of the events taking place during the SMPTE Technical
Conference and Exhibition in New York, November 9-12, 2005. For more information
about the conference or to purchase tickets, please visit the SMPTE website at
Listed below are the individual award recipients and background information on
This award is given to honor the individual by recognizing outstanding technical
contributions to the progress of engineering phases of the motion picture,
television, or motion imaging industries.
This year’s recipient, S. Merrill Weiss, is a consultant in electronic media
technology, technology management, and management. Much of Weiss’s 38-year
career has been devoted to the development of new television and advanced
imaging, and communications technologies. In 1981, he produced the tests that
led to the first international digital television standard. He later conceived
the approach that permitted the industry transition from 8-bit to 10-bit digital
video systems and enabled the widespread use of serial digital interfaces as
embodied in the SMPTE Serial Digital Interface (SDI) standards. Weiss was also
instrumental in instigating and developing the first standards to deal with
metadata, before it was known by that name. A SMPTE Fellow, Weiss served as
SMPTE Engineering Director for Television from 1996 to 1999. He has chaired
seven major SMPTE Working Groups and Technology Committees, and also served as
co-chair of the joint SMPTE-EBU Task Force on Harmonized Standards for the
Exchange of Program Material as Bit Streams. Weiss is also active on the
Advanced Television Systems Committee and also served on working parties of the
Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Advisory Committee on Advanced
Television Services. Weiss was the recipient of the Society’s David Sarnoff Gold
Medal Award in 1995. He has published several books and well over 100 papers. He
has one issued patent and one pending.
EASTMAN KODAK GOLD MEDAL AWARD
It is the purpose of this award to honor the recipient by recognizing
which lead to new or unique educational programs utilizing motion pictures,
television, and high-speed and instrumentation photography, or other
photographic sciences. The award shall recognize developments, which result in
advancing the educational process at any or all levels.
The 2005 Eastman Kodak Gold Medal Award is presented to James F. MacKay, for
organizing the Kodak Worldwide Student Filmmakers program in 1990 and overseeing
it for years thereafter. A visionary venture designed to nurture the next
generation of filmmakers, ¬the program created an endowment fund to provide
annual tuition scholarships to deserving students in perpetuity, product grants
to film schools at the discretion of faculty and administration; an educational
allowance program offering schools deep discounts; creation and free
distribution of educational materials, and sponsorship of lecture series on
college campuses. MacKay also pioneered many other educational endeavors,
including an intern program at the Cannes Film Festival in partnership with the
American Pavilion and a student showcase at the festival. Columbia College
awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters to MacKay, citing his
outstanding contributions to the industry: "He led the development of Kodak's
educational initiatives designed to help nurture, along with the educator, the
future generation of filmmakers."
THE TECHNICOLOR/HERBERT T. KALMUS GOLD MEDAL AWARD
This award is given to honor the recipient by recognizing outstanding
contributions in the development of color films, processing, techniques, or
equipment useful in making color motion pictures for theater or television use.
The 2005 Technicolor - Herbert T. Kalmus Gold Medal is awarded to Richard C.
Sehlin for his contributions and participation in every facet of the motion
picture system from Capture to Display. Mr. Sehlin is the chief technical
officer and Vice-President, entertainment imaging at Kodak. Sehlin’s career at
Kodak spans more than three decades. He was instrumental in the development of
early high-speed camera-negative film projects, as well as special applications
such as the high-speed Eastman Color Negative 5295 SA. He invented and
co-developed numerous other negative and print film products. Sehlin has also
developed a highly capable systems organization that has continued to develop
products for the motion picture industry, such as the recent Vision 2 products
and Premier ECP. A SMPTE Fellow, Sehlin has written numerous articles for the
Journal and has received two Journal Awards. He is also the recipient of two
technical Academy Awards.
THE JOHN GRIERSON INTERNATIONAL GOLD MEDAL AWARD
It is the purpose of this award to honor the recipient by recognizing
significant technical achievements related to the production of documentary
motion picture films.
The 2005 John Grierson International Gold Medal is awarded to Ken Burns, for his
pioneering work in historical documentary film making using animation of still
photography to bring history alive, and for the use of sound synchronized to
animated stills to create a new reality. Ken Burns has been making films for
more than thirty years. Since the Academy Award nominated Brooklyn Bridge in
1981, Ken has gone on to direct and produce some of the most acclaimed
historical documentaries ever made. The historian Stephen Ambrose has said of
his films, "More Americans get their history from Ken Burns than any other
source." A December 2002 poll conducted by Real Screen Magazine listed The Civil
War as second only to Robert Flaherty’s Nanook of the North as the “most
influential documentary of all time,” and named Ken Burns and Robert Flaherty as
the “most influential documentary makers” of all time.
THE JAMES A. LEITCH GOLD MEDAL AWARD
It is the purpose of this award to honor the recipient by recognizing
outstanding contributions in the application of digital technology to the motion
imaging arts and sciences. The award shall recognize developments in software,
equipment, systems, or the standardization of technology involved in the
acquisition, processing, or distribution of sound and images related to motion
This year’s recipient is Frederick M. Remley, for his pioneering work in
chairing the IEC and SMPTE committees that created the first digital videotape
recording format, Type D-1. Mr. Remley has been actively involved in the SMPTE
for many years, and is highly recognized by the Society. He received the
Society’s two highest honors, the Progress Medal Award, in 1990, and an Honorary
Membership in 1991. Mr. Remley was also the SMPTE Vice President for Television
from 1978-79, SMPTE Governor (Midwest) for more than ten years & Chair of
Detroit Section for two terms, Chair of the SMPTE Board of Editors, from
1985-1995, and the Chair of many SMPTE committees in fields of video recording,
television engineering, and standards preparation. Mr. Remley became a Fellow of
the Society in 1967, and was the recipient of the 1995 Eastman Kodak Gold Medal
Award. Mr. Remley retired from the University of Michigan in 1993, where he
worked for over forty years.
THE SAMUEL L. WARNER MEMORIAL MEDAL AWARD
This award is given to honor the individual by recognizing outstanding
contributions in the design and development of new and improved methods and/or
apparatus for sound-on-film motion pictures, including any step in the process.
The 2005 Samuel L. Warner Memorial Medal is awarded to Robert C. Lovick for his
work and contributions to the science, engineering and practice of sound on
film. Prior to his retirement from Kodak, Mr. Lovick worked as a senior
technical associate and was involved in high-definition television committee
work in the International Standards Organization (ISO). He supervised a
sound-on-film laboratory, and later a television technology laboratory and holds
a number of patents in the field. Lovick graduated from the University of
Nebraska in 1943 with a BSc in electrical engineering. He later worked in Naval
Ordnance where he helped develop near-miss proximity fuses for greater accuracy
of military ordnance. He also developed nondestructive bench testing of
proximity fuses. A longtime member of SMPTE, Lovick has authored more than a
dozen papers published in the Journal.
THE JOURNAL AWARD
This award is presented to the author(s) of the most outstanding paper
originally published in the Journal of the Society during the preceding calendar
year. Papers published in the Journal are eligible only if any previous
publication was by the Society.
This year’s Journal Award recipients are Matthew Cowan, Glenn Kennel, Thomas
Maier, and Brad Walker, for the paper “Contrast Sensitivity Experiment to
Determine the Bit Depth for Digital Cinema,” published in the September 2004
issue of the SMPTE Motion Imaging Journal.
Matt Cowan is the co-founder of Entertainment Technology Consultants, an
organization specializing in the science and applications of digital cinema
technology. He has over 20 years experience in the development and application
of new products in the media and display fields. Cowan’s comprehensive
background includes development of electronic projection systems and analysis of
color reproduction issues in electronic displays. He was instrumental in
developing the current mastering processes used in digital cinema, which
introduced the use of the digital mastering theater for color and dynamic range
adjustment. Cowan has presented a number of papers at SMPTE conferences and
served as chair of the SMPTE DC-28 committee on Compression and Stereoscopic
Glenn Kennel works for the DLP Cinema group of Texas Instruments in a role that
includes technology and business development. His primary focus is working with
the industry and digital cinema suppliers on interoperability and
standardization. Kennel previously worked at Kodak, where he led the development
of the Cineon digital film scanners and laser recorders and a prototype HDTV
telecine, which was the foundation for the Spirit Datacine. He currently chairs
the SMPTE DC-28 Color Ad Hoc Group.
Tom Maier is a research fellow in the entertainment imaging business unit of
Kodak. During his 35-year career at Kodak, Maier has written computer programs
to model film and digital imaging systems, developed methods to characterize and
optimize the color quality of these imaging systems, and run psychometric
experiments to confirm the image-quality of his computer optimizations. Maier
currently serves on the SMPTE DC-28 committee on Digital Projection Systems and
previously served on a number of International Commission on Illumination (CIE)
committees related to color. He has a BS in chemical engineering from
Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a PhD in chemistry from the University
Brad Walker is currently senior systems engineer in the technology development
group in DLP Products at Texas Instruments (TI), where he has worked since 1988.
Previously, he was lead systems engineer for the development of the DLP cinema
architecture and signal processing. From 1984 to 1997 he was chief engineer and
vice-president of engineering at Video Post & Transfer, where he developed the
meta-speed telecine servo system. Walker holds four patents and was elected a
member of the group technical staff at TI in 2000. A member of SMPTE, he serves
on several SMPTE DC-28 Digital Cinema Technology committees, including the Color
Ad Hoc Group. He is a also member of the Society of Photo-Optical
Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE).
Journal Certificates of Merit will be presented to J-P. Vitton, S. M. Gerlach,
M. Herz, S. D. Hill, and A. J. Masson, for the paper “Influence of Image Spread
on Sound Film Performance,” published in the May/June 2004 issue of the SMPTE
Motion Imaging Journal.
Jean-Pierre Vitton has worked at Kodak for over 22 years. He is currently
responsible for sound at the entertainment imaging division of Kodak at the
Center of Technology & Services Europe, in France. During his 10 years in the
Corporate Research Lab, he has written more than 20 papers in international
research reviews. Vitton was responsible for technical characterizations of the
improved Kodak Panchromatic Sound Recording Film 2374 and is now part of the
Entertainment Imaging R&D team involved in the digital and hybrid program. He is
a member of SMPTE.
Steven M. Gerlach is a senior engineer at Kodak in Rochester, NY, where he has
worked in a variety of divisions for over 20 years and is currently involved
with optimizing the manufacture of Eastman Color Negative (ECN) and
black-and-white motion picture films. His interests are in design for
manufacturability, and he works closely with the research division as new
technologies are developed, then transferred to manufacturing. In 2001, Gerlach
received an Academy Award for Science Technology for his work in developing the
Panchromatic Sound Recording Film 2374, introduced in 1995.
Marian Herz is currently a product line market director for the Cellulose Fibers
Business at Weyerhaeuser Corp., where she is responsible for designing and
implementing the front end of innovation process. Before Weyerhaeuser, Herz
spent 22 years at Kodak, where she held numerous positions. In her most recent
role at Kodak, she was responsible for the strategy, development, and
commercialization of black-and-white motion picture films and motion picture
chemicals. She was also involved in the design and launch of Kodak Motion
Susan D. Hill has worked at Kodak for over 25 years. During her 20 years in the
Kodak Research Laboratories, Hill has been responsible for designing consumer
color papers and films, as well as Vision 250D color-negative film. She has led
R&D teams in bringing new chemistries to vision color print film,
black-and-white motion picture print film, and sound films to the marketplace.
She is currently on the Kodak R&D administrative team, responsible for leading
the media R&D productivity initiative, directed at workflow re-design across
Kodak’s media product lines. Hill has a BS in chemical engineering.
Alan J. Masson recently retired after 35 years of service at Kodak in the U.K.
and U.S. During his tenure at Kodak, Masson held numerous positions including
head of motion picture training in the U.K.; technical coordinator, European
Region; and director of engineering, Hollywood Region. He participated in the
development of Ektachrome sound tracks and introduction of panchromatic sound
recording film for multiformat digital sound tracks. Masson has presented
numerous papers and presentations on sound negative film, color negative films,
telecine control tools, and cyan dye sound tracks. A Fellow of SMPTE, he has
served the Society in many capacities, including Chair of the Rochester and
Hollywood Sections; Governor of the Hollywood Region; Editorial Director, Motion
Pictures; and Chair of the Motion Picture Laboratory Services Technology (L6 )
and Film Technology (F2) committees.
THE CITATION OF OUTSTANDING SERVICE TO THE SOCIETY
The purpose of this citation is to recognize individuals for dedicated service
to the Society over a sustained period of time. Particular emphasis is to be
placed on service performed at the Section level, including, but not limited to,
services performed at Section meetings, special Section meetings and national
This year, three recipients are being honored.
Alan J. Masson has been active in the SMPTE since 1989 and is now a Fellow of
the Society. He has served as Manager, Secretary/Treasurer and Chairman in two
sections. He has also served as a regional Governor and has chaired and
presented at several conferences. Mr. Masson’s participation at the local and
national level is an inspiration to his peers.
Tony Tin-Ming, Ngai joined SMPTE as a student member in 1974, and went on to
serve as Membership Chair and Chairman of the SMPTE Hong Kong section. Tony
actively promotes SMPTE with organized technical seminars, technical
conferences, technology delegation and engineering workshops, including several
major High Definition workshops covering HD cinematography and post production.
The success of the technical seminars and conference provided opportunities for
film and television engineers to become familiar with new technology. The SMPTE
would like to recognize Mr. Ngai for his continuing contributions to the
William J. Weber receives the citation for his continuing support to the
Philadelphia Section. Over the past years, during increasing scarcity of meeting
sites, Mr. Weber has made the WHYY broadcast facility available for Section
meetings, and has also conducted tours of the technical facilities. Mr. Weber’s
friendly willingness to lend support of his service-oriented organization and
his own talents are a decided asset to the Philadelphia Section and the Society
as a whole.
THE SOCIETY CITATION
The Society Citation recognizes individuals or companies who have actively been
involved in specific Society engineering or editorial functions.
This year’s recipients are Edgar A. Schuller, for ten years of dedicated service
and leadership in directing the Archival papers and Historical Committee, and
Michael A. Dolan for creativity, research skills, and tenacity in presenting
important aspects of SMPTE’s rich history as the Author of the Almanac column in
the SMPTE Motion Imaging Journal.
Edgar A. Schuller, a SMPTE Life Fellow and former New York Regional Governor,
has been actively involved in Society affairs since 1952. He has served many
terms as Manager of the New York Section, and has held many positions, including
Chairman, Secretary/Treasurer, Program Chairman and Test Materials Advisor. He
has presented numerous papers to the New York and other Sections and has
organized many technical and social programs. On the national level he has
served on six technology committees for an average of twenty years each, and is
the co-author of two SMPTE Recommended Practices. He has chaired seven national
committees, served on several other administrative committees as well as twenty
years on the Board of Editors. As Chair of the National Education Committee in
the 1960s, he organized East, Central, and West Education Committees and
spearheaded the creation of six technical education courses at New York
University and New York studios. He was also the recipient of the 1997 SMPTE
Citation of Outstanding Service to the Society Award.
Michael A. Dolan is founder and president of Television Broadcast Technology,
providing specialized professional encoders, test tools, and technical
consulting in the field of digital television. He holds a BSEE degree from
Virginia Tech '79 and has worked for and founded various leading edge computer
graphics and real time systems companies since then, including early
foundational work in W3C technology and analog data broadcasting. Mr. Dolan has
been involved in digital television engineering for the past 7 years, including
data broadcast system architecture and receiver design and compliance. He
currently chairs the ATSC Data Broadcasting Specialist Group (T3/S13), and the
SMPTE Technology Committee on Data Essence (D27), and is active in various other
data-related television standards activities. Mr. Dolan holds several patents in
computer web technology.
THE LOU WOLF MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP
The Lou Wolf Memorial Scholarship is designed to help students further their
undergraduate or graduate studies in motion pictures and television, with an
emphasis on technology.
THE SMPTE STUDENT PAPER AWARD
The Student Paper Award is meant to recognize the outstanding paper prepared and
submitted by a Student Member
This year’s recipient, of both the Lou Wolf Memorial Scholarship and the SMPTE
Student Paper Award is Ben Brunkhardt, a fulltime cinematographer working in Los
Angeles. Over the past 12 years, while a student, Brunkhardt has served as
director of photography on 21 short films and music videos, and on one
feature-length film. He is the founder of Arrowhead Productions, an independent
film production company, currently in pre-production of both large-format and
feature films. Brunkhardt has developed a new, patent-pending post-production
process for large-format-filmed motion pictures, which he calls large format
negative repurposing (LFNR). It was for his paper, "Large Format Negative
Repurposing (LFNR) – Method for Recomposing Large Format Media," that he
received this year’s Student Paper Award. He produced and photographed the first
15/70 (IMAX) film utilizing the LFNR process, The Persistence of Dreams, a short
film recreating the assassination of Abraham Lincoln at Ford’s Theatre. The
film, as well as his new process, debuted at the 2005 Large Format Cinema
Association conference in Los Angeles in April 2005. Brunkhardt is currently
consulting with other producers who hope to incorporate his LFNR process into
their future projects.