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Madeleine Noland

Madeleine Noland
Madeleine Noland

The abiding saga of advanced television standards requires patience. Noland brought plenty of that, along with a consensus-building leadership style and an encyclopedic knowledge of NextGen TV when she became ATSC president in May 2019. Noland had chaired several ATSC 3.0-related and implementation teams since 2012 and in standards roles, at Backchannelmedia Inc., Telvue Corp. and LG Electronics.

Noland began to earn her geek credentials as a kid. Her father, a university professor, gave her access to an acoustic coupler, which gave her access to the “campus mainframe” computers.

Madeleine Noland

“I was soon playing text-based adventure games and learning to write programs in Basic and Fortran on this amazing new toy,” she recalled. Eventually she applied her tech interest to the media business at Backchannelmedia, a pioneer in advanced advertising solutions for ATSC 1.0, which was just emerging. 

As Noland moved through the standards process, she found it “gratifying to work with the brightest minds in broadcast engineering from around the globe.” As the groups discussed technical solutions, Noland was impressed to watch the “amazing intersection of technology and teamwork.”

She is also aware of on-going issues of the intertwined communications/media ecosystem. “ATSC 3.0 offers great potential to be a gamechanger for the media tech business,” Noland reflected. “But history suggests that vigilance, creative thinking and continually striving for progress will all be required to make good things happen.

“With next-gen technology, broadcasting is emerging from a largely local solution onto the global stage, joining other global data/media delivery systems such as the internet, Wi-Fi and LTE/5G. Cloud technology, the international outlook, IP-based workflows and new business scenarios [are] all coming together,” Noland observed, which means “the industry needs a huge range of skillsets.” 

As for ATSC’s agenda, Noland expects that camaraderie will continue to drive the group and fulfill her checklist: “How to help a group achieve its goals, how to build a great team, how to keep learning, how to make things happen, how to keep calm, how to stick up for your ideas, and how to listen.”

“And how we all need a good laugh from time to time.”