SBE and ATSC to Develop ATSC 3.0 Certification for Broadcast Engineers

The Society of Broadcast Engineers, Inc. (SBE), the association for broadcast and multimedia technology professionals, and the Advanced Television Systems Committee, Inc. (ATSC) today announced a cooperative effort to develop a new Specialist level of SBE certification that will benchmark an individual’s proficiency in the ATSC 3.0 System standard.

“SBE Certification covers a range of experience levels and disciplines in broadcast and media engineering. As broadcast engineering diversified beyond legacy technology, the SBE Certification Program also diversified by adding certifications for computer networking and IT, and then a series of specific Specialist Certifications for television transmission, AM directional arrays, and digital radio. With the industry preparing to implement ATSC 3.0, broadcast engineers must be proficient in the next-generation television technology. The SBE and ATSC are working together to develop the next SBE Certification Specialist to cover ATSC 3.0,” said SBE President Jim Leifer, CPBE.

“ATSC is pleased to work with SBE to develop an ATSC 3.0 Specialist Certification program. The SBE has extensive experience training and certifying broadcast engineers. Our work with the SBE is part of efforts to support deployment of ATSC 3.0,” said Mark Richer, president of ATSC.
The world’s first internet-based broadcast television standard, ATSC 3.0 will give stations and viewers more choices and options now that broadcast TV can seamlessly connect with broadband-delivered content. Approved for use by U.S. broadcasters and deployed in South Korea, ATSC 3.0 technologies make it possible to transmit in Ultra High-Definition, to offer immersive audio, and to add more capabilities like high dynamic range, wide color gamut, and interoperability with Internet-delivered content.

The Society of Broadcast Engineers Certification Program is part of the society’s efforts contributing to the advancement of broadcast engineering for the general benefit of the entire broadcast industry. The program was created in 1975 to recognize and raise the professional status of broadcast engineers by providing standards of professional competence. Through the years, the SBE’s certification program has become recognized in the industry as the primary method of verifying the attainment of educational standards. With the industry constantly changing, the SBE-certified engineer must keep up with those changes.

To hold SBE Specialist Certification, an individual must first hold one of the SBE core-four certifications: CBT, CBRE/CBTE, CSRE/CSTE or CPBE. Once the new Specialist Certification is released, applicants will take a 50-question, multiple-choice exam and answer an essay question.

More information about SBE certification is online at


Certification Service Milestones

The SBE is made up of a multitude of volunteers. There are seven employees who work at the National Office, but the real momentum behind the SBE is those who dedicate their personal time to further the goals and objectives of broadcast engineering through the SBE. This includes, but is not limited to, the Board of Directors, all the various SBE committees in addition to the Certification Committee, and the local chapters including the chapter certification chairs.

At the spring Membership Meeting at the 2018 NAB Show, the SBE recognized the local certification chairmen who devote volunteer time to the Program of Certification. These local certification chairmen receive a plaque on the recurring five-year anniversaries. What follows is a list of those who were recognized at the meeting in April. Thank you very much to all the volunteers who devote so many hours to the SBE and the certification program.

Chapter Certification Chairs
1 Year James Campbell, CPBE; Chapter 103
Rusty Armitage, CPBE; Chapter 113
5 Years James Cole, CPBE: Chapter 9
David Shaffer, CPBE, CBNE; Chapter 56
10 Years Steve Epstein, CPBE; Chapter 143
15 Years Ed Roos, CPBE; Chapter 88
25 Years Thomas Green, CSTE; Chapter 45
30 Years Samuel Straus, CPBE; Chapter 60
SBE Certification Committee
25 Years Troy Pennington, CSRE, CBNT

A Top Ten List of Most-certified SBE Chapters

by John Poray, CAE
SBE Executive Director

There are a number of ways to gauge the vitality of a chapter of the SBE. The number of active members and how many quality meetings held each year are two ways that are often used. Another is to measure the percentage of SBE members in each chapter that hold one or more SBE certifications.

Though SBE certification is an optional program, we of course recommend it highly. It is the most recognized measure in the broadcasting business today of technical knowledge and experience. I took a look at SBE chapters that meet the requirements to be a SBE Quality Chapter (who earned a chapter cash rebate from the national SBE for 2014) AND, that had 50% or more of its members certified through the SBE, and created a “SBE Top Ten” list; or in this case, Top 11.

During this 40th anniversary of the SBE Program of Certification, we’re pleased to recognize the Top 11 Chapters, their chairmen and certification chairmen, who play a significant leadership role in establishing a high level of chapter programming and a high percentage of member participation in the SBE certification program.

Rank Chapter % SBE Certified Chapter Chairman Certification Chairman
1 118, Montgomery, AL 68% Wiely Boswell, CBRE, CBNE Charles Grider, CBRE, CBNT
2 131, Inland Empire, CA 67% Don Bartie, CPBE, CBNT Paul Claxton, CPBE, CBNE
2 24, Madison, WI 67% Kevin Ruppert, CPBE, CBNT Jim Hermanson, CPBE, CBNT
4 86, Greenville, SC 63% Jerry Massey, CPBE, 8-VSB, AMD, DRB, CBNT Robert Maw, CSTE
5 55, St. Louis, MO 62% Terrence Dupuis, CBRE, CBNT Don Strauss, CPBE
6 52, Central Ohio 55% John Owen Roland Elikofer, CPBE
7 28, Milwaukee, WI 54% Todd Boettcher, CPBE Rick Ryan, CPBE
7 3, Kansas 54% Vern Wirka, CPBE Robert Locke, CPBE, CBNT
7 96, Rockford, IL 54% Ben Pflederer Chuck Ingle, CPBE, AMD
10 7, Jacksonville, FL 51% Craig Butler, CSRTE Alan Alsobrook, CSRE, AMD, CBNT
11 102, Grand Rapids, MI 50% Glenn Gunnufsen, CSTE, CBNT Philip Schmitt, CBRE, CBT

No matter what stage you are in your career as a broadcast engineer or master control operator, obtaining SBE certification can be helpful to you in your own professional development. Your chapter’s certification chairman can help you get started and answer any questions you may have. You can also check the Certification section at the SBE website,, or contact SBE Certification Director Megan Clappe at the SBE National Office.

Pecena presenting day-long session on IP Networking for Broadcasters August 30 in Los Angeles

Wayne Pecena, a member of the SBE Technical Presenters Group, is presenting IP networking to broadcasters on August 30.  Thank you to SBE Chapter 47 and NBC Universal for working together to bring this program to their area. The cost for members of the SBE is $49. 

This full-day intensive class will focus on TCP/IP based networking fundamentals in an Ethernet environment. Topics covered will include understanding RFC’s, TCP and UDP fundamentals, IP addressing, IPv4 subnetting, an introduction to IPv6, switching fundamentals, VLAN use, routing fundamentals, quality of services (QoS) Basics, and networking security concerns.

Emphasis will be placed upon understanding and applying IP subnetting techniques, understanding when to switch, and understanding when to route in an IP network. Where appropriate, the application focus and practical use cases will be oriented towards a broadcast technical plant. Theoretical principals will be reinforced through practical exercises, network use cases, and a design practical to close out the day.

Class size is limited, so reserve your spot today!

Reinstate your lapsed SBE certification through the Jubilee Project

The SBE Certification Committee has announced a special opportunity for individuals who have allowed their SBE certification to lapse, to regain it with no exam required. The Jubilee Project, named for the SBE 50th anniversary that takes place in 2014, is for those who previously held an SBE certification that expired from January 1999 through January 2012.

All SBE certifications are included in the re-instatement program. For details, see the article on page six in the April issue of The Signal. Click here for the application.

How can IP Multicasting benefit broadcasters?

IP Multicast is a unique aspect of IP Networking technology that provides “one – to – many” communications between a source IP host and numerous subscriber IP hosts. The use of IP Multicast for delivery of real-time media content often finds widespread use in the broadcast facility. The SBE is offering a webinar, presented by Wayne Pecena, to help broadcasters learn more about IP Multicast. Learn more

Just how big is the IPv6 address space?

340,282,366,920,938,463,463,374,607,431,768,211,456 addresses to be exact.  Hear more about IPv6 during the Webinar by SBE on IP Networking, part 4 – IPv6, taking place February 21, 2013.

Just as IPv4 addressing can be challenging when managing limited IP address space, IPv6 brings new challenges when working with enormous IP address space. A new mindset is required to effectively understand and implement IPv6 in your network. New IPv6 features and capabilities also bring challenges to the broadcast network engineer.

Follow us on Twitter @SBEorg, #webinarsbysbe and post your questions for the webinar presenter, Wayne Pecena, CPBE, 8-vSB, AMD, DRB, CBNE. You can also post your questions on our Facebook page.

This webinar is the fourth in a series that aids in the self-study for the SBE Certified Broadcast Networking Engineer™ (CBNE™) certification exam.

IP Networking Webinar Series continues with the Fundamentals of IPv6

Just as IPv4 addressing can be challenging when managing limited IP address space, IPv6 brings new challenges when working with enormous IP address space. This webinar, which takes place on February 21, 2013, builds upon the brief introduction to IPv6 terminology presented in the third webinar of the series held in January 2013. A new mindset is required to effectively understand and implement IPv6 in your network. New IPv6 features and capabilities also bring challenges to the broadcast network engineer.

This webinar is the fourth in a series that aids in the self-study for the SBE Certified Broadcast Networking Engineer™ (CBNE™) certification exam.   More Info