Friday February 25, 2005 will be Jack Schmidt’s last day in the office at Ballantyne/Strong Entertainment Lighting after almost 20 years (19 years, 9 months, almost to the day!). But he is not leaving the lighting industry, and has actually started his own company: Special Lighting Solutions in Council Bluff, Iowa.

Special Lighting Solutions offers services specifically aimed at the people who own, use, specify and service followspots, particularly Strong Entertainment Lighting products. From offering architects and consultants the benefit of over 30 years in the industry, the past 20 as Strong Entertainment Lighting’s followspot product sales manager, to training technicians on the maintenance of Strong spotlights, to hands on technical support and advice, the new company can offer the finest in field support.

For facility planning and management, Special Lighting Solutions offers: planning specifically aimed at ensuring that the follow spot positions in facilities are located and outfitted to offer the most flexibility and utility; experience in the industry to assist buyers in the selection of the correct fixtures for a specific facility and its multiple uses: support for the installation and commissioning of followspots, and a close working relationship with the Strong factory and its network of dealers; and access to the only network of trained and certified followspot technicians world wide.

Special Lighting Solutions also offers one and a half to two day training sessions on the troubleshooting and maintenance of Strong Xenon Followspots. These training sessions, by the former product manager of Strong’s followspot division, are offered to Strong dealers, facilities, stagehands, and other interested parties. The training session teaches lighting technicians to solve common problems encountered during operation and maintenance of Strong follow spots. Emphasis is placed on the Xenon Super Trouper, Super Trouper II, and Gladiators, and the associated power supplies. Other spotlights may be covered in the session by prior arrangement.

Schmidt is a member of Local 42, IATSE, and a former lighting designer, and co-chairman of the ESTA/TSC Followspot Position Working Group, Schmidt has a background which has made him known throughout the industry as the "go-to guy" for Strong followspot technical information and advice, troubleshooting and tips. While retired from Strong, he is offering the same advice and support he has offered for the past 20 years to the industry through his new company, Special Lighting Solutions.

Contact: Jack Schmidt
Special Lighting Solutions
1225 Crescent Drive
Council Bluffs IA 51503
402-453-4444 X319 (until 2/25/05)