To: Av Tech Staff
From: JT McGuire (AV Tech Staff Garden State Expo)

JT Maguire

Hey Everyone. I just want to thank everyone on the team for another year well done. We were all the work horses of this con, and fought very hard to make sure things happen, even when something technically wasn't our duty to do so. 

I love my Main Events crew. Though understanding the reason why, Matt Keyserwas still well missed and will hopefully be back next year, but having people likeGabriel

 Fequiere Jr.

Andrew W. JohnsonLouis S., Fred Kale Ng, and Albert Alonso there, we knew we were a well oiled machine and did great things once again with Sixh, Mix Speakers, Cosplay Marquee, and the many other events we held in there this weekend. Also a big thanks to Vincent Ferraro who we stole from Video Programming, but proved to be a very reliable, and hopefully we can steal permanently for the Tech Team. 

Also while I didn't really have the chance to see what was going on with the Panels crew, I know that anything with Gordon Virasawmi and Lucky in front will be well organized and done with 100% effort. The only thing I can say in regard to this crew is Saturday night where three responsible-minded individuals took it upon themselves to make sure the equipment they were working with was taken care of when things weren't going according to plan. I won't get into that all here, but even while I think it wasn't your problem to be worrying about, I was happy to see newer members of the team show that type of responsibility.

And to Andrew W. Johnson, you will be missed on the team. I know you still plan on staying on as an advisor and help us with issues, but you will still be well missed at con. I've only been on the team since MN '08, so I don't know how things were before you, but you are a very thoughtful, smart, and strong individual who not only thinks out how to get things done properly, but willing to fight for them as well. I'm very proud to have worked under you in AV Tech.


To: AV Tech Staff
From: Gordon Virasawmi (AV Tech Staff DoubleTree)

Gordon Virasawmi

Hey all, it's Gordon. Seeing that JT posted a great note to the team, I'm gonna follow his example and try to do the same. :)

To our leads, Andrew W. Johnson and Eric Torgersen. Thank you for your experience and guidance. Eric, thanks for putting up with Panels improv and dealing with HR's Traffic. Andrew, thanks for calming me down on Friday night. Sometimes the most important support is the support we receive from our own team. :)

Louis S. The 300 Building nomad! You're jump in first determination let the AV Crew operate virtually free from any issues from 300. I know there's probably a lot of stuff that happened that you didn't let escalate. I know you also were on a lot of solo missions. You're hardcore bro. :) I know you're a lead, but I just had to say thank you for handling all that you did.

Doubletree Orange Shirts! Lucky Singh, Ankit (not on facebook), Nick Walker (Not on facebook), Ryan D. SwingleRyan Peterman, Danny Lee (facebook unknown), Erik Carlson. When is the next Kick? jk jk. I worked you guys hard. Some might say too hard. Funny thing is that the only thing you guys don't know how to do is complain o suck. Some of us got in on Thursday and busted ass until Sunday. First guys in, Last guys out. You guys are smart, strong, capable, and flexible. We built 1 rave in an hour, and 3 video rooms on the fly using some of our personal tech. We lug and tugged. oh boy did we lug and tug. We chased girls, took some shit, gave an appropriate about of it back, worked continuously. We fixed problems, a lot of them. We DJed the breaks. We opened options for con goers where other departments seemed not to care. We covered each other and made time for those who needed to buy stuff for their GFs or attend the panels they wanted to. We gave up hang out time to keep it all together. I even heard a con attendee say, "If you want answers, go to the orange shirts. They know."

For the DoubleTree Staff, special recognition goes to Ankit Patel and Lucky Singh. Ankit took over Micromanaging this year which allowed me to deal with a lot of inter department nonsense. Lucky was the constructive mastermind who not only took care of the "higher end" panelists in Panel 1, but was the lead in organizing Andrew's Recognition. Both are veteran members and stepped up above and beyond the call of duty. Dude, Andrew and Eric T. If you thought I was good taking Doubletree that first time, you'd be proud to see that our progressive tradition of leadership expansion really worked on Ankit and Lucky.

Danny Lee (facebook unknown) and Ryan Peterman (known as Peterman). I met you guys @ this con and was impressed with what I saw. 

Danny Lee's highly adaptive nature and cool attitude really helped with dealing in the Arena. The Arena can be a desolate hellhole @ times, yet Danny went in, was the first man @ the scene, and started setting up the board, managing the social situation, and making it comfortable for other Av Tech to switch in and out. Unfortunately, we didn't get to use Danny's true skills, which are in the field of Apple support. :(

Ryan Peterman's awesome work ethic allowed him to deal with a very dynamic environment coming in on Saturday. His area of expertise deals with multi channel management (from his job.) This allowed him to instantly slide into sound management. Along with his skills from Network Administration, this made him perfect for supporting panelists on an advanced level with their PCs. That's right guys, we have ANOTHER network admin. :) Beyond his technical expertise, Peterman's physical endurance allowed him to take a lead position in packing and unpacking the uhaul truck. He plays Tetris like a Boss.

Erik Carlson, Ryan Swingle, and Nick Walker (not on Facebook). Seasoned from Middlesex County College's AGT, first year working @ Animenext. All 3 of you were sharp and on point dealing with room changes. You guys kept your eyes peeled and made changes with Ankit for the best interest of the con goer. And Daft Punk girl. Nick, come on man, tell us some details!

And to all the Doubletree Orange Shirts, on behalf of the other departments, thanks for holding back the names of people who were giving you crap. I heard that a number of people in mid level management positions were giving our team a hard time. I guess that's what people do when they have too much time on their hands.

Albert Alonso, sorry bout taking your bed on um... I think it was Saturday Night. Great con bro. :)

JT, Sorry bout not having more people this year. I know both Garden State and DoubleTree were stretched (as usual) but it seemed a little more tight this year.

To the 2 girls who came in on Sunday. Thank you for helping out. Those labels worked great. Also, it was really nice to have ladies who know how to work and lighten the atmosphere of a situation. Please come back next year.

To the photo booth. My guys got overworked and didn't get to see the hottest cosplayers @ the con. I gotta give these guys a reason to come back. Help? :) Seriously though, photo booth's relationship with the con chair really helped out AV Tech. During an executive decision on Friday night, the Con Chair (Basically, the guy on the top of all decision making) declared that no department is to inhibit AV Tech from entering any panel. This is so that we are able to complete our work. I feel a lot of this was influenced by photo booth. Also, a thank you to photo booth members Danny Virasawmi and Brian Madolid for help with load in and load out.

Steve Bobo, a friend of mine. He helped with lug and tug on Sunday night. In return, I got him in Dead Dog. Thanks man.

We did good this year. If you can, try to make it to the wrap up meeting on July 17th. I have some spare Orange Shirts that need to go into the hands of some very hard working men.

PS: Andrew, I accidently dropped one of your CRTs. I have both @ my house.


To: AV Tech Staff
From: Andrew Johnson (AV Tech Lead 2011) (Via Facebook)

Andrew W. Johnson

It's going to be hard to follow on the heels of JT and Gordon but here goes.

First of all I would like to say it's been a privilege and an honor working with all of you. You guys rock, and if I could work with you every day, my job would be amazing, sadly I can't do the convention work everyday or I would burn out quickly.

I'm sorry I could not be there from load in to load out, but having done that for practically about 10 years between AnimeNEXT, MangaNEXT, and I-CON, I'm getting a bit worn out. I do think that many departments are jealous of Tech-A/V. I think what it is, is that some are jealous of our comradery, our unity, and our work ethic.

I asked a few of you why you do it. Most of the answers I've heard, I also related to. I heard that this is a challenge, and we look forward to taking on this challenge and see how well we measure up. I agree. I take on the challenge, and before it's even over, in my mind I'm reviewing what went well and what went wrong. I immediately start thinking about how to correct the issues within our power to correct, so we don't make those mistakes again.

I also heard that this, in a way, is like going to war and we are the soldiers who create that bond with fellow soldiers. I also agree. I could not ask for a better team to work with. I think many of us developed this kinship through our work ethic and sacrifice, and in the end we end up respecting each other, and will go the extra mile for our comrade without question. That is rare in this world.

Why I did it? The reasons are not all known to me yet, but I love the tech work, I love the challenge, and to keep building something that I started and see it grow. I care. I love working with talented people who are working just as hard if not harder then I am. At my day job, I don't follow the request to wear red shirts on Fridays since it doesn't mean anything there. However, I can say with out a doubt, I'm proud to wear Orange! I'm proud to see our team wearing Orange! I will keep my Orange shirts forever. That's why other departments are jealous! Not many have what we have.

I'm not going to do individual name recognition since Gordon and JT took care of that. I'm also embarrassed to reluctantly admit that I didn't get a chance to learn all the new people's names; I'm sorry about that. To those veterans, thank you. Actually I can't thank you enough. You guys stepped up beautifully and ensured that I had nothing to worry about in your areas. The new guys: thank you for coming on board and putting up with all the crap. We would not have been able to put on a show without your help! Tech-A/V makes the con happen regardless of what they say!

When I started working with AnimeNEXT back in year one, I never set out to do Tech-A/V. I was supposed to escort the guests around. Sadly I showed some aptitude towards the gear that was rented, and guess what, I was immediately shipped into Tech-A/V, and I've been there ever since.

My first attempt at running Tech-A/V ended in disaster on year three, which included a bad car accident a day before the con, putting $6,000 of damage on my 2003 Subaru WRX (pre STi). In the years that followed, the individual heading up Tech-A/V, created many bad issues. Hence, Tech-A/V was handed to me, even though I don't like the leadership positions. I just like to do what I do best, aka play with toys (in our case our toys are very expensive) and leave me alone.

Since I was back leading Tech-A/V, I figured I would work hard to build it into the group we have today. When I started on version 2.0, I decided that I wanted to surround myself with staff who were better then me. It did take several years, but I can proudly say that you guys have exceeded all my expectations. You guys have made my departure a difficult one, but it's no longer my department. It's now your department. It belongs to all of you. Don't let anybody take that away from you. Work it because you want to, not because you feel like you have to. Above all, keep up the kinship, the comradery, and the magic.

I will miss you all, but family commitments are more important at this point. I will be still be on Facebook, e-mail, AOL-IM, Skype, ICQ (yeah I still have that.) I will still be advising and guiding, since I have 10 years of information stuck in my brain.

I can't make the July 17th wrap-up meeting but, I'm looking into planning a BBQ or something this summer for Tech-A/V, though at this point I'm still figuring it out, so please stay tuned, and I'll update you as soon as I have info.

Again, a big thanks to Tech-A/V! Thank you. 


Eric Torgersen

I know this is very late. I want to thank everyone on AV Tech for being the pros they are. Last weekend you again rocked the house with handling things better than ever. 
I don't want to repeat what Andrew, Gordon, and JT already have said. 
Thank you all for your hard work and dedication. We are the hardest working part of the con and put up with alot of BS. You all deserve to be proud of the job you've done. 
Orange Army! Thank you all. You rock! 

Hope to see you all and more next time around. Manga next is closer to AN this year. I hope this doesn't burn anyone out. 

To all the new guys, thanks for working with us hope to see you back as well.

Eric T