ATSC honors S. Merrill Weiss with Bernard Lechner Outstanding Contributor Award at the 2012 Annual Meeting

Broadcast Industry Veteran has more than 45 Years of Experience

WASHINGTON, May 9, 2012 The Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC) today announced that S. Merrill Weiss is the 2012 recipient of its highest technical honor, the Bernard J. Lechner Outstanding Contributor Award. The presentation was made during the ATSC Annual Meeting at the Ronald Reagan International Trade Center this week.

The Lechner Award is bestowed once a year to an individual representative of the membership whose technical and leadership contributions to the ATSC have been invaluable and exemplary. The title of the award recognizes the first recipient, Bernard Lechner, for his outstanding services to the ATSC. The award winner is selected by the Board of Directors and presented at the ATSC Annual Meeting.

“Merrill is very adept at analyzing complex issues, putting them in perspective and recommending strategies to move the process forward," said Mark Richer, ATSC President . “He has played a key role in many of our standards development efforts.”

Weiss is a well-known industry consultant with over 45 years’ experience in broadcasting. He is a Fellow of SMPTE, received its David Sarnoff Gold Medal and its Progress Medal, and has chaired numerous standards-writing committees. A graduate of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsvylania, he was the 2006 recipient of the NAB Television Engineering Achievement Award. Weiss is certified as a Professional Broadcast Engineer by SBE. He is a member of the IEEE Broadcast Technology Society and serves on its Administrative Committee. He holds four issued U.S. patents and two international patents on broadcast transmission technology.

“It’s a pleasure to welcome Merrill into the long list of TV industry experts who have earned recognition for their contributions to the standards-setting activities of ATSC. Anyone who has worked alongside him knows that he exemplifies the spirit of cooperation that makes collaborative progress possible,” said John Godfrey, Vice President, Samsung Electronics, and Chairman of the ATSC Board of Directors

Weiss was a leading contributor in the development of A/110, “Synchronization Standard for Distributed Transmission,” and its successor document “A/110:2011, “ATSC Standard for Transmitter Synchronization.” In addition, he made significant technical contributions to the development of A/ 153, “ATSC Mobile DTV,” and also has been a longtime contributor to work on video and audio coding in TG1/ S6, transport issues in TG1/S8, transmission technologies in TG1/S9, and receivers in TG1/S10.

Past recipients of the ATSC Lechner Award:

  • 2000 - Bernard Lechner, Consultant
  • 2001 - Rich Chernock, Triveni Digital
  • 2002 - Regis Crinon, Microsoft
  • 2003 - Glenn Adams, Extensible Formatting Systems, Inc
  • 2004 - Graham Jones, National Association of Broadcasters
  • 2005 - John Henderson, Hitachi
  • 2006 - Art Allison, National Association of Broadcasters
  • 2007 - Mark Eyer, Sony Electronics
  • 2008 - Michael Dolan, TBT
  • 2009 - Wayne Bretl, LG Electronics/Zenith
  • 2010 - Pat Waddell, Harmonic
  • 2011 - Jim Starzynski, NBC Universal

The 2012 Annual Meeting included a series of panels exploring the future of television, technology trends, and accessibility. Individual speakers championed ATSC’s past and current work in the standards arena.

Sponsors of the event included Dolby, LG Electronics, Linear Acoustic, Samsung, Zenith, Harris, CEA, ETRI, IEEE BTS, Sony, BIM, Cox Media Group, Ericsson, Jampro Antennas, and PBS.

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Contact: Lindsay Shelton-Gross, ATSC (202) 872-9160

About Us

The Advanced Television Systems Committee, Inc., is an international, non-profit organization developing voluntary standards for digital television. The ATSC member organizations represent the broadcast, broadcast equipment, motion picture, consumer electronics, computer, cable, satellite, and semiconductor industries. Specifically, ATSC is working to coordinate television standards among different communications media focusing on digital television, interactive systems, and broadband multimedia communications. ATSC is also developing digital television implementation strategies and presenting educational seminars on the ATSC standards. ATSC was formed in 1982 by the member organizations of the Joint Committee on InterSociety Coordination (JCIC): the Electronic Industries Association (EIA), the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB), the National Cable Telecommunications Association (NCTA), and the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE). ATSC members represent the broadcast, broadcast equipment, motion picture, consumer electronics, computer, cable, satellite, and semiconductor industries.