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2010 TechCon/Exhibit/Education Program

A Special Thanks from the SVC President

This message, from Frank Zimone, the new SVC President, incorporates his Inaugural Speech presented at the SVC Annual Business Meeting on April 18, 2010.

A Special Thanks to the SVC “Family”

On Sunday, April 18, 2010 at the Business Meeting, held in conjunction with the 53rd SVC Technical Conference, I had the honor of being sworn in as President. To be quite honest, the day started fitfully. In addition to the normal anticipation centered around "How well will the program go off?", “Is the exhibition hall ready?", "Is the audio-visual equipment functioning and has it all been tested?", along with the countless other issues surrounding the execution of a major technical conference and tradeshow exhibition, a certain, unpronounceable volcano in Iceland threatened the outcome of the entire event. Contingency plans were formulated, discussed, and discussed once again in an effort to prepare for the worst. However, no amount of discussion can postpone the hands of time, and in what seemed like a blink of the eye, the day was over. It was 7:30 p.m. and the Business Meeting commenced.

To all those who did not have the opportunity to attend, I would like to share with you the text of my prepared remarks:

Please allow me yet another opportunity to welcome you to the 53rd SVC TechCon and express how thrilled and honored I am to serve as the President of the Society.

The SVC is so much more than something that can be defined by an annual conference and a tradeshow. In fact, I think it's almost criminal to describe the SVC in such a fashion.

We are a community; a community of professionals that generates ideas and commercializes technologies that change our very lives. We freely share information with all those who simply ask.

The SVC is people; people from all over the world. Smart people. Driven people. Visionary people. And most of all, talented; extremely talented people.

So, who are these people?

First off, look around you this evening. You are the SVC! Without the participation and the contributions of all the members, corporate sponsors and exhibitors, there simply wouldn't be a Society at all!

We have MPI, a team of professionals led by Vivienne Mattox, who quite frankly makes everything possible; and I truly mean everything. The TechCon, the Exhibition, The TopCon, our engaging Web Site, our publications, and the archives; none of it would be possible without their 25/7 dedication. Yes, they have figured out how to squeeze an extra hour from a day. In true SVC fashion, their secrets will be revealed to all of you; once we figure out how to capture and bottle their incredible drive, energy, and dedication. We'll keep you posted!

We have the SVC Board of Directors, the Program Committee, The Strategic Planning Committee, Carl Lampert (our dynamo of a Technical Director), and all of the TAC Chairs and TAC Members. These people are the brightest and most capable people on the planet

Personally, I get goose bumps every time I have a chance to work with them. Never forget, and I mean never forget, that in this age of the "me" generation, where everything seems to have a price, and actions are driven by greed and the consideration of financial return, these men and women contribute their time, energy and commitment all year long for nothing but the pleasure of giving back to the community that they call home.

And finally, we have our legacy; a legacy that is made up of the efforts and contributions of all those that have gone before us. Fifty-three years and literally tens of thousands of man-years have gone into crafting this society and assembling the know-how that allows all of us, to this day, to practice our craft. We have an obligation to continue this effort so the same can be said about us 50 years from now.

Personally, I have been blessed with a wonderful family (some of whom are here tonight), my health, and amazing professional opportunities throughout my career. It's interesting that last Friday night I was having dinner with my son and he asked me if I was nervous taking on this job. I'll share with you that it was one of those great father-son moments you treasure for your entire life. I simply looked at him and said “barring a few volcanoes, economic recessions, and melting polar ice caps; that with all of the talent that this Society has, it is my job to simply lead for a bit and then just get out of the way of all these great folks the other 99% of the time!”

So, what's in store for the next few years?

For starters, we will continue to embrace those new technologies that are important to the Society. In particular, our focus on the materials and processes for green technologies that are enabled by our collective talents will feature ever more prominently in our activities.

Guided by our strategic plan, you will see us continue to expand our international outreach and presence. For example, in 2011 we plan to hold a TopCon in Korea on TCO's. This will mark the first time in the SVC’s history that a conference will be sponsored outside of the continental United States.

You will see a concentrated and focused effort to increase our membership and mentor our young members. As a Society, we have so much to offer young professionals and you will see a renewed vigor to "pass it forward". To all of our new and young members; you are our future and we will do our best to prepare you for that role. Rest assured, there isn't a member of the Board of Directors who doesn't feel personally accountable in this area.

You will see an even greater use of the Internet to share ideas and information between and with our membership. As a Society, we have an obligation to share our collective wisdom and tribal know-how.

You will see intensity in an effort to integrate the technical conference and the exhibition into a more cohesive entity that will draw on the strengths of both to make us all better.

In short, you'll see activities and action that will enhance and solidify our position as the worldwide "destination" for vacuum science and deposition technologies. This work will be challenging; this work will be hard. It's not likely to be easy but I can assure you that it will be fun!

In looking back at these remarks and witnessing the events of the following four days unfold, I just couldn't help but smile. In spite of everything that "Mother Nature" could throw at us, the entire SVC, including the presenters, course instructors, attendees, and exhibitors (if I left anyone out then apologies are in order) not only lived up to the "expectations" but also exceeded them in every respect. Technical Program and Education Program holes were filled, exhibitors pitched in to help those who were affected by transportation issues surrounding the largest transportation disruption since 9/11, and volunteers were plentiful to fill whatever role was needed or required, regardless of the time and consequences to their "personal agenda". Nothing was too big or too small! I feel it is important to recognize the "way beyond the call of duty" effort of the SVC's team of tutorial course instructors with an extra special "shout out" to Andre Anders, Bill Sproul, Thomas Schuelke, and Ton Hurkmans. Not one tutorial course had to be cancelled and not a single registrant was disappointed.

It has been said that "adversity is the crucible that forges our character". As a Society, we measured up spectacularly! Thank you all. Amazing, just absolutely amazing!

Frank Zimone, Angstrom Sciences (Fzimone@angstromsciences.com) is the SVC President

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