With profound sadness, Populous announced the passing this week of one of its founders, Jerry Anderson, after a courageous battle with cancer.
Jerry was a pioneer in the sport architecture industry. Over a four decade career, Jerry led the design and operations of the world’s most prestigious venues and sporting events, including the NFL Super Bowl, Olympic Games, NCAA championship events and the FIFA World Cup. Jerry impacted nearly every professional and collegiate sports league, and, as one of the foremost authorities in the sport and special event industry, he was widely recognized for his trailblazing experience in the planning and design of venues and events.
“Jerry made an indelible mark on Populous’ global presence, but more importantly, his work is etched in the memories of billions around the world,” said Earl Santee, FAIA, Populous Americas Managing Director. “He was a respected colleague, a friend to so many and a leader for us all, and we will greatly miss him.”
Jerry received a bachelor’s degree with honors from Montana State University, and he received his master’s degree in architecture from the University of California, Berkeley. He was recognized by Sports Business International as one of the World’s 20 Most Influential and as an Architecture Industry Leader by the Denver Business Journal.
Jerry started his career as an architect in Seattle and then later in San Francisco. His early projects included designs for the Rose Bowl, Candlestick Park, and many ski resorts. He invented the modern-day industry of major event planning, and the NFL was one of his first and longest-statured clients. He has worked on every NFL Super Bowl since Super Bowl XIX at Stanford Stadium and has helped grow the event into one of the most recognized in the world.
“Few people are more synonymous with the Super Bowl and more a part of the NFL events family than Jerry. The list of ways that Jerry made the NFL — and everything he touched — better is extraordinary,” said Peter O’Reilly, NFL Senior Vice President of Events & Club Business Development. “Though we will miss him dearly, his legacy will shine on.”
As his renown grew, Jerry built large teams that successfully planned, delivered and operated events such as the 1994 FIFA World Cup USA, the 1996 Olympic Summer Games in Atlanta and the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City. In total, he was involved extensively in the delivery of 13 Olympic Games.
Jerry was honored and humbled to be recognized for his comprehensive Olympic career by being selected to participate in the 2012 London Olympic Games Torch Relay. Reflecting on being a torch bearer, Jerry said, “I’ve had the honor to connect with the Olympic spirit in many ways over my career – from our venues, to athletes, to staff, to spectators, and to communities. But this was truly one of the most amazing and thrilling experiences of my Olympic journey – to connect so closely to people through the power of the torch and the flame. I could feel their pride, happiness, and hope everywhere I turned. It was exciting and humbling all at the same time.”
Following the success of the 2002 Salt Lake Games where Jerry was the Managing Director of Venue Development, he joined Populous and opened the firm’s Denver office. In the ensuing decades, he led a team of event architects, planners, operators and accreditation experts that grew with clients such as the National Hockey League, NCAA Final Four and College Football Playoff.
While this is an impressive list, Jerry’s true contribution was his approach to projects, clients, staff and consultants; literally every individual with whom he interacted.
“Jerry approached every project with professionalism, grace and humor. He had an immeasurable impact on me and multiple others in the business,” said Populous Senior Principal Jeff Keas. “That is his true legacy.”
Jerry perfected the art of staying calm under pressure and trained his staff always to avoid the spotlight, as he put it, “stay in the shadows.”
“Jerry loved every aspect of every detail that goes into planning an event in a stadium or venue site. He loved teaching the art and practice of event and watching his team grow into the professionals we have all become,” said Populous Senior Principal Todd Barnes. “We are all blessed to have been able to learn from a true worldwide innovator.”
As a Populous co-founder and leader, Jerry created the firm’s event and accreditation practice and grew the firm’s Denver presence to its current staff of nearly 50. He also served as Chairman of the firm’s Board of Directors and under his chairmanship, Populous has had some of its most successful years in its 35-year history.
“When you think about Jerry’s career, he had a roster of clients any professional would envy. But he was the consummate professional, and what grounded him every day was bringing leadership to the event teams as they prepared and delivered life’s most memorable moments,” Santee said. “As we reflect on what it means to carry Jerry’s torch forward, it’s an incredible legacy and a road map to leave for generations to come.”
Jerry is survived by his wife, Rebecca, and son, Jackson; a brother, Dave, and his father, Gerald.
AEG Presents announced that it has acquired PromoWest Productions, one of the country’s most prominent and respected independent live music promoters and the premier concert promotion company in Central Ohio and Western Pennsylvania. The partnership with PromoWest expands AEG Presents‘ presence throughout the Midwest and comes one year following its acquisition of the historic Agora Theatre in Cleveland.
Columbus, Ohio-based PromoWest Productions was founded by Scott Stienecker in 1983 and has grown to be the largest independent promoter in the Midwest. PromoWest Productions is responsible for the ground-breaking design of their indoor/outdoor venues; EXPRESS LIVE! in Columbus, and STAGE AE in Pittsburgh. PromoWest Productions also books and operates the iconic Newport Music Hall, the Basement, and the A&R Music Bar in Columbus, and will retain the ownership of Bunbury Music Festival in Cincinnati.
Stienecker will continue to oversee the growth of PromoWest Productions as a division of AEG Presents.
“After getting to know AEG Presents and their senior management, it became more and more clear to me that both of our organizations were built from a common entrepreneurial spirit and culture, Stienecker said. “I am certain this partnership is right for PromoWest and AEG Presents is truly the right fit for us. I believe our partnership with AEG Presents will provide us an additional collection of resources and assets that will allow us to continue to build on our achievements and take our company to an even higher level.”
“PromoWest and AEG Presents share a passion and commitment to delivering the best music experiences to fans,” added Shawn Trell, Executive Vice President and Chief Operation Officer of AEG Presents. “Scott and his team have built an incredibly respected organization with a proven track record of success and we are pleased that they chose to partner with us. We look forward to working closely with them to continue to deliver first class concert experiences and further grow the PromoWest brand.”
The Los Angeles Convention Center (LACC), owned by the City of Los Angeles and managed by AEG Facilities, is proud to be the first convention center in the United States to permanently install a 5G wireless network. This cutting-edge technology was deployed at the LACC in conjunction with the “GSMA Mobile World Congress Americas, in Partnership with CTIA” on September 12-14, 2018.
“The establishment of 5G at the Los Angeles Convention Center will serve as a catalyst across all of Los Angeles,” said Doane Liu, Executive Director of the City of Los Angeles Department of Convention and Tourism Development. “This is a significant development that will drive technological advancements in our city, reinforcing Mayor Eric Garcetti’s goal that Los Angeles will continue to be the number one digital city in the United States.”
5G is the fifth generation of wireless internet and voice services, improving on 4G LTE that currently accounts for around three-quarters of total mobile connections in the U.S. (excluding licensed cellular IoT). 5G will move data faster and be more responsive, dramatically increasing wireless speeds and capacity to transform services such as AI, VR, and video calling. It will facilitate additional technology uses including improved Internet of Things, autonomous vehicles, smart cities, and more. Launching a powerful 5G network enables the next level of technology, as showcased in demonstrations at the 2018 Mobile World Congress Americas, a three-day conference and exhibition convening the mobile ecosystem and its adjacent industries.
“5G will transform the way billions of people consume media and entertainment on their mobile devices and the LA entertainment and mobile tech communities will be key in shaping how it will all come together,” said Reed Peterson, Head of Mobile World Congress Americas, GSMA. “The LACC is taking a visionary approach in deploying its new 5G network, providing next-generation capabilities for exhibitors and attendees at Mobile World Congress Americas, and many other events, well into the future.”
“The 5G installation will be the legacy of MWCA at the Los Angeles Convention Center,” said Ellen Schwartz, General Manager of the LACC. “In addition to 5G, approximately 100 new antennas have been connected in the facility. All 4G LTE networks have been upgraded, bringing the best in wireless to future events held at our convention center.”
McKinney ISD Stadium and Community Event Center has partnered with Daktronics to manufacture and install the largest high school video display in the country. The north end zone video display measures 54 feet wide by 32 feet tall and features Daktronics patented 13HD pixel layout. For comparison, the display stands 7 feet taller than McKinney North High School and, if set on its side, is just 5 feet shy of McKinney’s five-story hospitals.
Fans can view the end zone display as either one large image or divided into multiple zones to show any combination of live video, instant replays, game information and statistics, graphics and animations and sponsorship messages.
“While these systems can start as simple as a basic scoreboard or an entry-level video display with a camera, we are proud of the evolution of high schools like McKinney ISD, Katy ISD and Dallas ISD as they lead the market with our patented technology similar to professional venues like Houston Astros, FC Dallas, Pittsburgh Steelers and many more,” said Kyle Sydow, Daktronics High School, Parks & Recreation market manager.
Also a first for high schools, the seating fascia along each sideline and the south end zone showcases 482 feet of ribbon displays with a 15HD pixel layout. These displays bring supplemental game information and graphics to the main display. It also offers additional opportunities for sponsors to be highlighted throughout events.
Complementing the digital displays is a state-of-the-art audio system. McKinney chose the Daktronics Sportsound SS2000HD audio for its high-fidelity sound, reaching everyone in the stadium with consistent volume and clarity, in addition to its ease of operation. Fans experience a dynamic audiovisual experience with Daktronics Sportsound® SS2000 HD audio system. This audio system integrates with the video and scoring to provide full-range sound reproduction while delivering clear and intelligible speech.
Daktronics Show Control System powers the displays. This industry-leading display control software provides a combination of simple operation, expandable production and proven experience. Additionally, world-class video processing, data integration and playback hardware all form a user-friendly production solution for all levels of play.
“In choosing Daktronics, McKinney ISD and schools throughout the country have the reassurance of a long-lasting display built with Daktronics smart sourcing strategies and rigorous reliability testing methods, ensuring an engaging audio-visual system for well into the future,” said Sydow.
Populous announced the expansion of its American footprint into the Texas market. The firm’s Dallas office will be led by noted
designers Byron Chambers and Jonathan Kelley. This new office will focus on a wide range of project types and services including sports and entertainment venues, convention centers, aviation experience architecture, hospitality architecture, and interior design. The expansion is Populous’ fifth in the United States in recent years and supports Populous’ growth trajectory in the Americas.
“Having a physical presence in the Texas market has been on our radar for many years; it is indicative of our desire to continually adapt to changing market needs,” said Populous Americas Managing Director and Senior Principal Earl Santee, FAIA. “The stars aligned for us in finding Byron and Jonathan and with their leadership, we will now have a nucleus of talented designers who all unite under the same desire to create the places where people love to be together.”
Chambers and Kelley, along with their team in Dallas, will be integral in connecting Populous to opportunities throughout the Southern United States as well as Latin and South America.
“What attracted us to Populous, in addition to its massive brand recognition and design expertise, was our alignment with Populous’ cultural values around client service,” Kelley said. “We have always admired Populous’ focus on relationships, ideas and design, and we look forward to expanding those standards within the footprint of the South.”
Chambers and Kelley will lead a Dallas staff of eight, with the plans for Populous to continue to grow its presence much as it has done with other upstart markets across the Americas.
“Very few firms have the reputation Populous does,” Chambers said. “As designers, we will accept the challenge of creating the places that connect our communities; iconic buildings where lifetime memories are made.”