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Biographies

Kevin Foster, Chairman, Broadband Forum Board of Directors; Head of Access Platform Innovation, BT

Kevin Foster is head of innovation for BT's UK broadband access platforms. He is also Chairman and a member of the Board of the Broadband Forum and Chairman of the UK NICC DSL Task Group.

In previous roles in BT he was responsible for BT's technical standards development programme and he led BT's DSL engineering team through the halcyon days of early ADSL broadband development subsequent roll-out and the birth of VDSL technology. He has almost 30 years’ experience in the design and development of wireline digital transmission in BT's access network and international telecommunication standards.

During his career, Kevin has been very active in telecommunication standardisation in ETSI, FSAN, ITU-T, ATIS, the Broadband Forum and the UK NICC. He has published many technical papers and standards contributions. He has also contributed to several books and patents on aspects of DSL engineering.

Kevin received the BT Chairman's Award for Corporate Social Responsibility and the BT Gold Award for Innovation in 2011 and the prestigious BT Martlesham Medal for lifetime achievement in access in 2012.

Kevin is a Fellow of the Institute of Engineering and Technology and a Chartered Engineer. He holds an MSc (with Distinction) in Telecommunications Engineering from the University of London, a BSc (Hons) in Electrical and Electronic Engineering, and a Diploma in Industrial Studies from Loughborough University.



Tom Starr, President, Broadband Forum Board of Directors; AT&T, Lead Member of Technical Staff

Tom Starr serves as Broadband Forum's President, and has served as a member of the Broadband Forum Board of Directors from the inception of the Broadband Forum in 1994 to the present. Tom Starr is a Lead Member of Technical Staff at AT&T Labs in Hoffman Estates, Illinois. Tom is responsible for the development and standardization of new local access technologies for AT&T's network. These technologies include ADSL, HDSL, and VDSL.

From 1988 to 2000, Tom has served as Chairperson of ANSI accredited standards working group T1E1.4 which develops xDSL standards for the United States, received the Committee T1 Outstanding Leadership Award in 2001, and now serves at ATIS-NAI Chair. Tom participates in the ITU SG15 Q4 group on xDSL international standards and serves as Chair of ITU-T Working Part 1 of Study Group 15. Tom is a co-author of the books "DSL Advances" published by Prentice Hall in 2003, and "Understanding Digital Subscriber Line Technology" published by Prentice Hall in 1999. Tom previously worked 12 years at AT&T Bell Laboratories on ISDN and local telephone switching systems.

Tom holds an MS degree in Computer Science and a BS degree in Computer Engineering from the University of Illinois in Urbana, IL. He holds 24 US patents in the field of telecommunications, and has another 13 patent applications pending. In 2010 Tom was named as one of the 100 most powerful people in the telecoms industry worldwide, in the Global Telecoms Business Power 100.



Marcin Drzymala, Vice President, Broadband Forum Board of Directors; Orange

Marcin Drzymala is an employee of Orange Polska, an affiliate company of Orange. He holds a Master of Science degree in Telecommunications from the Warsaw University of Technology. He has worked for Orange Polska (formerly Telekomunikacja Polska) since 2003. Working in the Wireline Access Division of Orange Labs Poland, he is focused on DSL and copper access systems. Throughout his career Marcin assisted TP business units in deployment of ADSL, ADSL2+ and VDSL2 services, including IPTV roll-outs. He is currently involved in equipment evaluation and qualification for FT Group, participating in several transversal and international projects.

An important part of Marcin's professional activity is related to the Broadband Forum work. Since 2004 he's been contributing to the Metallic Transmission (formerly Testing & Interoperability) Working Group, and since 2008 he has been a member of the BBF Board of Directors.

Marcin is the winner of the 2007-year edition of the Telekomunikacja Polska Innovation Contest "Telekreator".



David Sinicrope, Vice President, Broadband Forum Board of Directors; Ericsson

David Sinicrope is currently a Senior Manager leading wireline standards activity at Ericsson's IP and Broadband Division. His current focus is standardization and strategic product management in the areas of IP, MPLS, PWE3 and Carrier Ethernet and their use in current and evolving networks. His career includes over 20 years of data and telecommunications experience in standardization, product management, architecture and system design.

David currently serves as a member of the Broadband Forum Board and as a Co-Chair of the IP/MPLS & Core WG. David served as the Vice Chairman of the IP/MPLS Forum Board, and was also Chair of the Applications and Deployment Working Group, a post held since 2002. Prior to PA IP and Broadband (formerly Redback Networks), Mr. Sinicrope was with Ericsson IP Infrastructure Inc. (formerly Torrent Networks) as a systems architect leading MPLS development. Before joining Ericsson, he was with Virata Inc. as a Product Manager and was also a Principal Engineer at Lucent Technologies/Ascend/Cascade Communications where his focus was on ATM and Frame Relay core switching architecture and development. From 1988, he was with IBM Networking Systems where he was responsible for ATM, Frame Relay and ISDN architecture and development for IBM's SNA and routing products.



Frank Van der Putten, Treasurer, Broadband Forum Board of Directors; Standards Manager, Alcatel-Lucent

Frank Van der Putten was born in Aalst, Belgium in 1963. He obtained an Electronic Engineering Degree in Communication Techniques from the Ghent University in 1986 and a Business Management Degree from the Leuven University in 1991. In 1986, he joined the Ghent University Communications and Information Transmission Laboratories to work on image processing.

In 1988, he joined the Alcatel-Lucent Research Center to continue image processing and evolved into home networking and DSL access technologies. From 1994, he was involved in the DAVIC standardization activities, where he chaired the physical layer working group until end 1996. Since then, he has been involved in DSL standardization within the ANSI (T1.413-1998 editor), ETSI, ITU-T and the Broadband Forum. He is currently serving as Alcatel-Lucent Standards Manager for wired access networks, as ITU-T ADSL recommendations editor, and as Treasurer and member of the Broadband Forum Board of Directors.



Lincoln Lavoie, Secretary, Broadband Forum Board of Directors; University of New Hampshire InterOperability Laboratory (UNH IOL)

Lincoln Lavoie is a senior engineer and acts as an industry lead for the executive steering body at the University of New Hampshire InterOperability Laboratory (UNH-IOL). In this role, he is responsible for the technical management of the broadband access technology groups, including Digital Subscriber Line (DSL), Gigabit Passive Optical Network (GPON), and Technical Report 069 (TR-069). In addition to his duties with the UNH-IOL, Lincoln is also the vice-chair of the Metallic Transmission Working Group of the Broadband Forum, and is actively involved in the Full Service Access Network (FSAN), HomeGrid Forum, and Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) Forum.



Robin Mersh, Chief Executive Officer

Robin Mersh joined the Broadband Forum as Chief Operating Officer in July 2006, and was promoted to Chief Executive Officer in July 2010. Robin has authored many articles and has spoken at and chaired many broadband industry conferences and exhibitions. He has worked in the telecommunications industry for over 18 years, starting at Cable & Wireless and then moving on to BT before meeting his wife and moving to the US in 1999. Robin has worked in business development and alliance management for various OSS software companies in the United States, mainly in network and service provisioning and activation, where he negotiated and managed several large OEM agreements. He is originally from Cambridge in the United Kingdom. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree with honors from Queen Mary and Westfield College, University of London in 1992.



Lowell Lamb, Broadband Forum Board of Directors; Broadcom Corporation

Lowell D. Lamb is a Technical Director in the Infrastructure and Networking Group of Broadcom Corporation. Prior to Broadcom, Lamb was the Vice President of Marketing and later Chief Strategy Officer of Teknovus, Inc. Earlier in his career, Lamb was the Director of PON Networks for Terawave Communications, Inc., the Assistant Director of the Arizona Fullerene Consortium at the University of Arizona, and held engineering positions at SBC Laboratories and the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Lamb holds a Ph.D. in Physics from the University of Arizona and is the author of more than 30 publications and patents.



Manuel Paul, Broadband Forum Board of Directors; Deutsche Telekom

Manuel Paul is a senior expert in international standardization for Deutsche Telekom. He serves as a member of the Broadband Forum Board since 2013. Within Deutsche Telekom (DT) Mr. Paul works in standardization, as well as in strategy and R&D projects for DT's All-IP network transformation, coordinating activities related to Software-Defined Networking (SDN) and packet network standards. He is also active in other standards bodies such as the Open Networking Foundation (ONF) and the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF).

Prior to his current position at DT, Manuel was a research professional and technology consultant for T-Systems, where he was active in a broad range of projects concerning packet transport technologies and transmission systems engineering, next generation network design and corporate R&D.



Les Brown, Broadband Forum Board of Directors; Huawei Technologies

As Director of Access Standards for Huawei, Les has more than 31 years of experience in wireline data communications technologies. His extensive experience features work with voice-band modems, DSL modems, and wireline based home networking, including DSP algorithm design, performance evaluation/optimization, mentoring/managing more junior DSP modem designers, and particularly the standardization of data communication technologies. Les was first involved in voice-band modem standardization, participating in the work on ITU-T Recommendations V.32, V.32bis and V.34, in the 1980s.

During the 1990s, Les was the Rapporteur for the 56k modem project, which resulted in Recommendation V.90. Since 1997, he has been involved in ITU-T Q4/15, where he has chaired the work on projects like VDSL2 (Recommendation G.993.2) and G.inp (impulse noise protection - Recommendation G.998.4), and currently chairs G.hn (home networking - Recommendations G.9960, G.9961, G.9963 and G.9964) and G.fast (next generation access over short loops). Les also chaired the ITU-T Focus Group on Smart Grid. He has also participated in ATIS COAST NAI, ETSI ATTM TM6, and NIST SGIP. For two years, Les was the editor of the Japanese DSL committee. Since 2002, Les has been the Chair of the former Test and Interop working group (now Metallic Transmission working group), where he has guided work on projects such as TR-67, TR-100/105 (ADSL2/2plus testing), TR-114/115 (VDSL2 testing), TR-127 (Dynamic testing of splitters and in-line filters with xDSL transceivers), and more recently TR-286 (MELT testing), TR-273 (testing of bonded multi-pair xDSL systems), WT-249 (vectoring testing for VDSL2), MD-257 issue 2 (an overview of G.993.5 vectoring), and WT-208 (G.hn home networking interoperability and performance testing), along with updates to the previous TRs.

Prior to Huawei, Les worked in standardization for companies including Lantiq, Infineon Technologies, Texas Instruments, Centillium, and Conexant Systems (Mindspeed), and he spent 20 years in a number of technical and standards positions at Motorola ISG.

Les has also served on the board of directors since 2007, representing Texas Instruments, Infineon Technologies, Lantiq and most recently Huawei Technologies.



Mauro Tilocca, Broadband Forum Board of Directors; Telecom Italia, Project Manager, Wireline Access Innovation

Mauro Tilocca graduated in electronic engineering at the Politecnico of Turin in 1994. He joined CSELT, former Telecom Italia’s R&D center, the same year dealing with transport network aspects. He has been also an ETSI technical editor.

Since 1998 Mauro began working in the access network department with a main focus on xDSL. He has been involved in the specification and implementation of Telecom Italia’s DSL validation framework, lab facilities and in the scouting and qualification of DSL technologies and commercial products. He collaborated with chipset vendors within framework projects and was in charge of Telecom Italia’s Independent Test Lab third-party service. He currently manages a project supporting the engineering of Telecom Italia’s broadband network and the NGN2 platform. Mauro is responsible for the interoperability and assessment of DSL products, for the engineering of evolutionary infrastructural components for FTTB deployment, and participates in the definition of standardization strategies.



Charles (Drew) Rexrode, Broadband Forum Board of Directors; Verizon Communications, Distinguished Member Technical Staff

Drew was Chairman of the Certification program at the IP/MPLS Forum, and continued as Co-Vice Chairman of the IP/MPLS Working Group in the Broadband Forum. He is now Co-Chairman of the IP/MPLS Working Group, and Co-Chairman of the Service Provider Action Council. He is a RPOC Champion, and helped to re-launch a certification program for the Broadband Forum. He holds a Master's of Science in Computer Science from Loyola University in Maryland, and also holds his Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) Certificate.



Christophe Alter, Broadband Forum Technical Committee Chair; Broadband Networks Standardization Manager, Orange

Christophe serves as the chairperson of the Broadband Forum Technical Committee, overseeing the 7 technical Working Groups of the BBF. He also serves as a co-editor of the Working Text 178 "Multi-service Broadband Network Architecture and Nodal Requirements." Since he first joined the Broadband Forum in 2004, Christophe has been a main contributor in the End to End Architecture Working Group. He served on the Broadband Forum Board of Directors from 2008 to 2012. He originated the union with the IP/MPLS Forum, the Fiber Access Network Working Group, the development of the BBF.247 certification program for GPON devices, and most recently the Service Innovation and Market Requirements Working Group.

Christophe Alter comes from Orange (previously France Telecom-Orange), where he is a member of a corporate division dedicated to standards and ecosystems development. He is responsible for Orange Group strategy regarding broadband networks standards. Previously he led network architecture designs for France Telecom WiFi hotspots and first triple play deployments over DSL access and IP/MPLS aggregation. He also served as board member and chair of the Architecture Task Force of the European collaborative research project "MUSE" - Multi Service Everywhere.

Christophe Alter graduated in 2000 from Ecole Centrale de Lyon (master in telecommunications).