The Wi-Fi Awards

Meet The Committee!

Initially, the Committee will consist of Keith Parsons, Sam Clements, and Jonathan Davis.


Each year, the recipient of the Keith Parsons Lifetime Achievement Award will be invited to join the Committee for the subsequent year to narrow down the next year’s candidates of recipients.  These Committee members will serve as Hosts and Presenters for the Awards Ceremony. 

Keith R. Parsons

Keith R. Parsons is a leader in the Wireless Community.  He is the founder of WLAN Pros, and is dedicated to furthering the WLAN Community.   He has a willingness and passion to share his knowledge and experience.  He is CWNE #3. 


1. Who is your favorite super hero character and why?

Sheldon Cooper. OK, maybe he isn’t a super hero in the comic book genre – but he is a fun fictional character with flaws, skills, strong personality, and yet is capable of still learning outside his chosen field. Plus, I too really liked watching Mr. Wizard growing up.


2.  What book is on your nightstand/coffee table/etc? 

The Grid – an in-depth discussion of how our electrical grid came to be as fragile and brittle as it is, and some ideas on how to fix it moving forward. Makes me want to be ‘energy self-sufficient’ for my own family and business.


3.  If you could pick a new skill this moment, what would it be and why? Able to do software defined anything… more programming capabilities… but it is NOT going to happen. I don’t enjoy it – I see the benefits but not the desire. So if it could be magically added to my repertoire…


4.  What made you first fall in love with Wireless?

When the ‘magic’ of not needing any wires and yet still be connected to the Internet was explained to me by someone in a private meeting with Apple – about a year before the first Wi-Fi came installed in a Mac. Then seeing the rapid growth… I thought it was rapid back in 2000-2002 – boy have things changed since then!


5.  Tell us about your first network design.

I used 30dB amplifiers between Wi-Fi Access Points and their external antennas, because, you know, It is all about the Power! <Insert Tim the Tool Man hoots here>


6.  What is the best advice you have ever received in your career?

Write everything you learned in University on a 3x5 card. Forces you to THINK about what is valuable and important. That and “always have something to write with and to write on” – use it every single day. It is part of being an Adult. 


Connect with Keith

  

Blog URL: 

http://WLANPros.com


Twitter: 

@KeithRParsons

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Sam Clements

Sam "It Depends" Clements is a Practice Manager for a large VAR, with a passion for all things wireless.  He has spent numerous years working in the wireless industry doing design, implementation, and troubleshooting.  He is CCIE #40629 (Wireless) and CWNE #101. 


1. Who is your favorite super hero character and why?

Keith Parsons? Failing that, I’d have to go something along the classic X-men lines – the entire group was developed so well. Admittedly that’s probably just nostalgia kicking in, but when I visit the comic book store, I always find myself gravitating to those story lines.

  

2.  What book is on your nightstand/coffee table/etc? 

Well, on my nightstand are comics from my last trip to New York that I haven’t gotten around to reading yet. Having said that, I am currently working my way through Learning Python 3 The Hard Way by Zed A. Shaw. It’s a good read, and I highly recommend it!


3.  If you could pick a new skill this moment, what would it be and why? 

Well, I think my previous question eluded to this one – I’d love to snap my fingers and just ‘know’ Python but I’ll settle for the long way to learn it for now. I think that it’s pretty plain that in order to stay relevant in the Mobility space today, you’re going to need at least a minimal understanding of some programming languages. It’s very similar to the Route/Switch conversation – do you need to know it? No. If you did know it, would you be better off? Yes.

  

4.  What made you first fall in love with Wireless?

It was very much an accident. My first exposure to Wi-Fi technologies was Frequency Hopping gear when I worked at IntelCom Group. We got this Access Point thingy and a PCMCIA card that we shoved into a Windows 95 laptop and were able to wander around the office watching a postage stamp sized streaming video off of the Internet. Fast forward several years and I was working as a platform engineer and our laptops were the precursor to the Intel Centrino efforts (standardizing Wi-Fi, CPUs, and chipsets in laptops). The magic of staying connected but not-cabled really resonated with me and that’s what jump started my career into what it is today. Little did I know then that Wi-Fi would become so pervasive and ubiquitous – it’s the primary form of access for almost anything today. We’ve come a long way! 


5.  Tell us about your first network design.

Hah! It was terrible. I had a platform background, not a networking background so I’ve done the worst of the worst. I’m not sure if it’s the first one I did or not, but I’ve done it all – APs on channels 1 through 11 consecutively, patches in the attic, pointed three stories down with the radios on max, ethernet runs well in excess of 100m (just turn the link down to 10/full, it’ll be fine!), the list goes on. I like to reflect on those moments when I’m teaching. Everyone has a starting point, and they’re usually pretty awful starting points. It’s a great way to so some humility.


6.  What is the best advice you have ever received in your career?

Get one of those twitter account thingies (Thanks, Jennifer Huber!). Seriously though, being able to stay connected with anyone in the world (even if it’s in short bursts) has opened my world up to so many new and exciting things. I’ve met people I never thought I’d meet and I like to think that I’m more accessible in return. The noise of social media is challenging at times, but getting connected to a community that is larger than yourself is way more important than the noise. Ask a question, get help, and soon enough, you’ll find yourself helping out the next person that comes along. 


Connect with Sam


Blog URL: 

http://www.sc-wifi.com 


Twitter: 

@samuel_clements 

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Jonathan Davis

Jonathan "JD" Davis is a network engineer located in Greensboro, NC.  He is a blogger, student for life and a thought leader within the community. 


1.  Who is your favorite super hero character and why?

I like the semi-hero’s. Deadpool tops that list, but so do the Guardians of the Galaxy. I like that their stories don’t follow the traditional comic book arc, and I like that they sometimes struggle with being both good and bad. I also love movies that are self-mocking. Both movies deliver that style of humor quite well.


2.  What book is on your nightstand/coffee table/etc?
The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien - I’ve read this book a few times. It’s a great reminder that we all carry much more than what is in our pockets or bags. Our stories, memories, and experience are just as important, and will greatly affect the way we experience conflict or stress.  


3.  If you could pick a new skill this moment, what would it be and why?
Just one? I’m working to script more and more of my routine task. It’s been a fun learning experience, but I would love to be able to sit down, open Atom, and start working away on a project without having to google something every 15 minutes. 


4.  What made you first fall in love with Wireless?
The physics. I didn’t really want to be a wireless guy. I wanted to specialize in security, but my team needed a wireless guy, and I had a small amount of experience. Once I realized it was a lot of wave dynamics, which I already understood from my audio career, it made me want to dig deeper.


5.  Tell us about your first network design.
Autonomous Cisco Aironet 1230B’s, with 6dbi dipoles, without proper spacing, way high up in a metal industrial ceiling. I let the antennas hang by the cables, which kept the fork lifts from breaking them off. It was pretty ugly. 


6.  What is the best advice you have ever received in your career?

Don’t ever pretend to be the smartest guy in the room. Unless you’re the only guy in the room, there is likely someone who knows more about something than you do. If you somehow find yourself in a room of people, and realize that you might actually be the smartest, you are in the wrong room.


Connect with JD


Blog URL: 

http://subnetwork.me


Twitter: 

@subnetwork

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Contact the Committee

If you have any questions or would like to contact a Committee Member directly, contact info is below:


Keith R Parsons - Keith@thewifiawards.com

Sam Clements - Sam@thewifiawards.com

Jonathan Davis - JD@thewifiawards.com


For additional info or questions, please email info@thewifiawards.com