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Our Instructors

Light Brigade’s instructors are technically skilled and have a wide variety of practical experience with fiber optic systems from small local telephone networks to sophisticated military facilities. Many have taught college-level courses in electronics and telecommunications. Others have built and operated fiber-optic networks or served as consultants for international companies. They are constantly evaluating new products and learning new techniques in order to maintain a leading-edge awareness of the industry.

Light Brigade has instructors spread throughout North America.

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JOHN DRON graduated from Montana State University in 1986 with a Bachelor of Science in Business Marketing. He soon gained work as a fiber optic technician with a small fiber optic services firm. For over seventeen years, John has worked as a technician, consultant, instructor, project manager, and business owner in locations as widely varied as Thule Air Force Base in Greenland and the tunnels beneath the City of Chicago. John has been an instructor with Light Brigade since 2015.

 

 

 

CAMERON KARCH has been involved with communications since 1983 specializing as a technician in both voice and data protocols. He has performed both project management and quality control tasks in addition to splicing, testing, and emergency restoration disciplines for a variety of CATV, telephone companies, end users and government organizations. Cameron has a variety of certifications from the White House and the Optical Society of America. He has worked as a fiber optic technician and an instructor for The Light Brigade since 1987.

 

 

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MARK KAZES has been in the technology industry over 25 years. He holds several certifications including ETA FOI (Fiber Optics Installer), ETA FOT-OSP (Fiber Optics Technician – Outside Plant), BICSI RCDD (Registered Communications Distribution Designer), OSP (Outside Plant Designer), RTPM (Registered Telecommunications Project Manager), Certified ICT Technician (Information Communications Technology), and Six Sigma (Green Belt Certified). Mark was named ETA International’s Top Certification Administrator (CA) for proctoring the most Fiber Optics examinations during 2016. Mark brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the classroom and has been with Light Brigade since 2015.

 

 

 

PHIL SHOEMAKER has been a member of The Light Brigade’s training staff since 2000. His work with fiber optic technology includes the design, installation, and maintenance of fiber optic voice, video, and data communications networks, and he has also participated in troubleshooting and emergency restorations. He has a Bachelor of Applied Science in Electronics Engineering Technology (BASEET), and is certified as an ETA Installer/Administrator, a NARTE Technician Class III, and has FCC GROL Certification (Elements 1 and 3).

 

 

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SEAN SHEEDY has two decades of experience that includes installation, troubleshooting, emergency restoration, and inspection. He is a published author, consultant, and trainer whose experience spans the military, government agencies, federal and state prisons, the traditional commercial market, and the private sector. He holds 30 industry certifications as well as instructor certificates from ETA and FOA. In addition to still working in the field, Sean developed the fiber optic/copper communications installation and troubleshooting courses for Edmonds Community College in Edmonds, WA, and serves as its instructor. Sean has been an instructor and technician with Light Brigade since 2012.



 
 

DANNY HUFFMAN is the president and founder of ONUG Communications, a network planning, design and construction services company. His 33 years of experience in the telecommunications and utility industry has enabled him to provide customers with varying assessments of industry trends including: “last mile” networks and broadband technologies. He has presented to the FCC and various industry groups on the future of fiber and trends for the telecommunications industry and has helped to pioneer automation of fiber design through the use of GIS and auto planning software. Before founding ONUG Communications, he held several management and technical positions with AFL and BellSouth Telecommunications. Danny has a Bachelor of Science, Mechanical Engineering from North Carolina State University.



 
 

NICK KJOS’s teaching career began more than 25 years ago at Bismarck State College (BSC) as an instructor in the Electronics/Telecommunications program. At BSC Nick taught a diverse range of courses including digital electronics, electronic devices, telecommunications 1 and 2, and computer hardware. Before teaching, he worked in the oil industry as an instrument supervisor, maintaining electronic equipment like computers, data storage devices, and specialized data acquisition equipment. Nick joined our training team in 2012 and teaches Fiber Optics 1-2-3, FTTx courses and Emergency Restoration. He earned his Associate of Applied Science from North Dakota State College of Science and a Bachelor of Arts from Valley City State University.  He is certified as an FOI and an FOT-OSP from the ETA.



 
 

GREG LAMBRECHT's more than 40 years of industry experience began as an avionics technician. Over a 15 year period, he worked on helicopters and fixed-winged aircraft in the Canadian Yukon and later for a Vancouver, BC airline. In 1991, he started teaching in the Avionics and Telecommunications Technician program at the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) and also served as the program head. Greg’s areas of expertise are radio frequency (RF) communications, fiber optics, and copper cabling services. After retiring from BCIT he became a Light Brigade instructor and is a certified administrator for the ETA’s FOI and FOT-OSP exams.



 
 

GARY KLINGELE has more than 40 years of experience working as an electronics technician performing installations, troubleshooting, emergency restorations, and inspections. His work history includes the installation and maintenance of fiber optic voice, video, and data communications networks. Gary has also worked with microwave radio systems, two-way VHF & UHF radio systems, control and security systems, and video systems. He has an Associate of Applied Sciences in Electronics Technology (AASET), and is certified as an ETA Fiber Optic Installer/Administrator, a UTC Fiber Optic Professional Technician, UTC Fiber Optic Professional Designer, a NARTE Master Technician and an FCC GROL Certification with RADAR endorsement.



 
 

MICHAEL WILDER’s 40-year career in fiber optics began when he attended the first Electro-Optics course given at Georgia Tech. After graduation, he joined AT&T Western Electric where he worked with Bell Labs scientists to develop equipment and procedures used to install and test fiber optics.  Mike developed and taught the first fiber optics installation and testing course given at AT&T. He later worked for BellSouth approving fiber, cables, and equipment, providing installation and testing procedures and evaluating new technologies including FTTx and WDM. He then worked for Anritsu where he provided technical input on fiber test equipment and systems, customer support, and training on the latest equipment. He has a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Emory University and a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology and an FOI from the ETA.



 
 

LEE RENFROE’s 22 years of industry experience began with Bell South/AT&T as a technician installing and maintaining telecommunications systems and equipment. He then began teaching fiber optics, phone system installation, structured cabling, and electronic security at Wiregrass Georgia Technical College. Lee was named BICSI Installer of the Year in 2012 and 2013. He is the owner of GoFroe, a technology-based company specializing in security, communications, and business networking. Lee has an Associate of Applied Sciences (AAS) in Technology from Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College. He holds many certifications including RCDD, ESS and Technician from BICSI, FOI from ETA, and CFOT CFOS/I/T/S/C/O/H/L/A/DC/D from FOA.



 
 

JEFF NOBLE has 25 years of expertise in design, installation,  and verification of optical fiber networks and ICT infrastructure. His career began with the United States Marine Corp as a MOS 1141 Electrician.  Throughout his career, he has engineered and audited fiber installations across the United States and spliced copper and fiber as a journeyman cable splicer on a Verizon Line Crew. Jeff has over ten years of instructor-led classroom teaching and field training experience with all aspects of OSP and ISP cabling installation. In additional to teaching Fiber Optics 1-2-3 and FTTx courses for Light Brigade he is also an instructor for BICSI ICT design and installation classes. Jeff holds in the following credentials:  RCDD, OSP, TECH, FOI, CT, and FOSP.



 
 

TIM YOUNT has extensive fiber field and test experience which he has honed throughout his more than 35-year career in the fiber optic industry. His background includes product line management roles at industry-leading companies including Siecor (Corning Cable), Tektronix, ILX Lightwave, Hewlett Packard, Acterna and JDSU.  He is the co-founder, principal trainer and fiber subject matter expert of Fiber Insight, a technology education, training, and optical network consulting organization. Tim has a Bachelor in Business Technologies from Appalachian State University. He holds global certifications and is an OTT licensed instructor for Certified Fiber Characterization Engineer and Certified Optical Network Associative. Tim also has an ETA Fiber Optics Installer (FOI) Certification.



 
 

TODD RUSSELL has been in the communications industry for more than 30 years, working for New England Telephone, NYNEX, Bell Atlantic and Verizon. During his career, he converted analog offices to digital, wired and tested high-speed long-distance toll circuits and installed, spliced and tested fiber optic rings. He managed a team that performed fiber optic cable splicing, testing and restoration and on September 11, 2001, was dispatched to Ground Zero to assist in the fiber restoration of New York City. As a project manager for a FIOS construction team, he was awarded a patent for a fiber optic test method and device. Todd has an Associate’s degree in computer information technology from Southern New Hampshire University.  Todd also has an FOI certification with the ETA.

 

 

 



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