In Memoriam: Former SBE President Barry Thomas


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Barry Thomas, radio engineering group executive and former president of the Society of Broadcast Engineers, died last Thursday of cancer. He was 56, according to the Broadcasters’ Desktop Resource.

He was most recently Director of Engineering at KIMN -KXKL-FM – KWOF – KKSE in the Denver metro and prior, DOE for Wilks Broadcasting’s Denver radio cluster. His 35+ career included stints as vice president of Engineering at Westwood One, and vice president of engineering for Lincoln Financial Media.

Thomas was the SBE’s 25th president from 2007 to 2009, and immediate past president from 2009 to 2011.Thomas helped lead the SBE’s lobbying efforts, representing the interests of broadcast engineers to the FCC and on Capitol Hill. In 2017, he was elected to serve on the board again, but decided to step down early in his term, according to the SBE.   

“Barry served the SBE in many capacities and has been a voice for many engineers in our industry for decades,” said SBE President Jim Leifer. “After hearing this news, I remembered so many occasions where Barry spent time developing younger engineers and being that mentor so many of us talk about. He was a devoted father, son, brother and fellow engineer who will be sorely missed by all.”

Thomas was also the former chairman of the NAB Radio Technology Committee and  past chairman of the RBDS Subcommittee of the National Radio System Committee, a standards-setting body. He continued to serve on several NRSC subcommittees.

Leslie Stimson, Inside Towers Washington Bureau Chief, worked with Thomas on several stories over the years. “He was smart, willing to share his knowledge, and always gracious with his time. I will miss him,” Stimson said.  Comments? Email Us.

December 11, 2018

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