The Foundation for the Advancement of the Sign Industry (FASI) has created a new Technical Committee to address various sign-industry issues involving codes, standards and best practices. The committee will conduct regular meetings to discuss evolving technical issues and develop strategic responses.
The FASI Technical Committee includes the following individuals distinguished by their substantial involvement with a broad range of technical and practical aspects impacting the on-premise sign industry:
Louis Cortina, PE, President, MBI Companies, Inc., Knoxville, TN
Louis Cortina is a professional engineer (BSCE) and graduate of the University of Tennessee with more than 30 years’ experience in the field of sign engineering. He is President of MBI Companies, Inc., an engineering firm licensed in all 50 states and also into parts of Canada.
Gabe Griffin, General Manager, Clear Sign & Design Inc., San Marcos, CA
Gabe Griffin started his sign industry career in the installation department working in the harsh Southern California weather. Armed with an NCCCO crane operator and California General Electrical Certification, Gabe spent nearly eight years building on his practical skill sets before trading in his tool belt for a MacBook.
Today Gabe is the GM of a 35-member, full-service custom sign company. He recently celebrated his 14th year with Clear Sign & Design. Gabe also finds time to give back to the sign industry, serving as a local IAEI member and participating on various, industry-related technical and educational committees. Additionally, Gabe serves on the NEC’s code-making panel 18, a role in which he contributes to the development of electrical sign safety, code revisions and related protocol.
Gabe feels strongly about the safety of the sign industry’s skilled labor force and he backs up his personal commitment by devoting his time to advance best safety practices in the industry.
Imad Kashif, P.E., Principal, LINK Engineering LLC, Knoxville, TN
Imad Kashif is a professional engineer and Principal of LINK Engineering, LLC, Knoxville, TN. He is a structural engineer by education and holds a Master’s degree from the University of Memphis (TN). He has 35 years’ experience in the industry and his firm is licensed in the 48 contiguous states. Imad’s background includes strong concentration in designing and specifying on-premise signage for a broad range of national concerns. He also serves on a number of professional organization committees and is devoted to furthering research and development initiatives in the fields of signage and lighting.
Imad was a member of the former ISA Mechanical & Structural Subcommittee and was heavily involved in the Sign Structures research project conducted at the University of California at San Diego from 2008 to 2013. This project examined causal factors and potential remedies for previously unexplained structural failures involving single-pole, high-rise signs.
Jack Lester, Engineering Manager, YESCO Inc., Las Vegas, NV
Jack Lester is Engineering Manager for Young Electric Sign Company (YESCO) in Las Vegas, NV, one of the largest custom sign manufacturers in the U.S. Jack is a 1966 Engineering graduate of the University of Cincinnati. His hometown is Ambridge, PA, and Jack was employed by the American Bridge Company prior to beginning his career in the sign industry.
Jack has been active in various regional and national sign associations as a steadfast champion of engineering safety and best practices in the industry. Along with his fellow members on the former ISA Mechanical & Structural Subcommittee, Jack played a pivotal role in managing the logistics of the multi-year Sign Structures research project conducted at the University of California at San Diego (UCSD).
Pat Schuster, General Manager, American Lift & Sign Service, Omaha, NE
Pat Schuster is the founder, owner and General Manager of American Lift & Sign Service in Omaha, Nebraska. Pat is a Licensed Master Sign Erector with 35 years experience in the industry and a 44-year member of IBEW Local #22 in Omaha. He’s a member of ISA, the USSC Foundation and WSA, and is directly involved in development of electrical codes and standards for the sign industry.
Wes Wilkens, Senior Staff Engineer, Persona, Inc., Watertown, SD
Wes Wilkens has served as Senior Staff Engineer for Persona, Inc., Watertown, SD, since 2002. He’s a 1989 Bachelor of Science graduate of North Dakota State University College of Engineering. Wes currently serves on the UL Standards Technical Panels for UL13, UL48, UL2592 and UL8750. He is also a principal member of NFPA Code Making Panel 18 which develops electric-sign requirements for the National Electrical Code.
Wes has also served on the International Sign Association’s Electrical Subcommittee since 2006, as well as on the UL/ISA Sign Industry Business Panel. As the previous chairman of ISA’s former ISA Structural & Mechanical Subcommittee, Wes was instrumental in various committee projects including research conducted at the University of California at San Diego to analyze and test high-rise sign structures.
Randy Wright, RKW Consulting, Montoursville, PA
A 38-year veteran of the electric-sign industry, Randy Wright represents the United States Sign Council Foundation (USSCF) on the UL-Sign Industry Business Panel, which engages in direct contacts and planning with UL management in conjunction with other sign associations. Randy is also an engineer driver and investigative fire inspector. His education includes an Advanced Certificate in Business Management from Penn State University, in addition to many industry and fire-related courses.
As a member of the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Code-Making Panel 18 since 1989 and currently a member of the National Electrical Code (NEC) Quarter Century Club, Randy serves as a Special Expert on Panel 18, playing a key role in the development of NEC Article 600 — Electric Signs and Outline lighting.
As a member of several Underwriters Laboratories (UL) Standards Technical Panels, Randy serves as an expert in the general category of electric-sign and lighting product categories. These panels provide direct input to UL on sign-industry issues and concerns in the spheres of electric-sign and outline lighting construction.
He also serves as an expert consultant, providing written materials, published articles, documents, testimony, seminar presentations and education for sign companies, fire investigators, electrical inspectors and the insurance industry. Additionally, Randy is a member of the International Association of Electrical Inspectors (IAEI).