Dave Labuskes on “#AVgood” and the AV Industry in 2020 — Blog Version of the LAVNCH WEEK ProAV Keynote

Dave Labuskes

Today in history marks the first-ever day of LAVNCH WEEK, the industry’s first virtual launch event — proudly created and successfully launched by rAVe in partnership with Zoom. Kicking off the day with the very first session of the week was AVIXA CEO David Labuskes. Who better to kick off LAVNCH WEEK than Dave Labuskes?

Quick aside: In case you missed LAVNCH WEEK ProAV Day today, we’re recapping all the live presenter sessions for you here on rAVe [PUBS]. We also encourage you to go ahead and get on the list for LAVNCH 2.0, which will be held the week of June 22 this year.

Among other amazing presenters, we were especially excited to have Dave for LAVNCH WEEK. Aside from being the solid source of leadership the industry has needed these past couple months (AVIXA was putting out official, timely updates on InfoComm even before others had a chance to make the calls on their own trade shows), Dave’s keynote today was exactly what the doctor ordered.

Here’s our recap of it.

What #AVgood Looks Like

Labuskes led with some much-needed raw emotion — also adding some perspective on how he’s seen the AV industry shift in the last couple months.

“We’ve got this tidal wave of news, and predictions, and conflicts, and blame, and resolve and heroism. Maybe you feel like you’ve just got it handled, and then some crazy thing happens,” Labuskes said.

Next, Labuskes brought to life his thoughts on two basic truths:

The first truth: people need each other. Many of us have seen, firsthand, how we’ve come together as an industry more than ever. The end goal: to spread #AVgood.

A mask-making effort by just one Draper employee, for instance, created a full movement for the Draper organization. Labuskes joked, “Most projection screens aren’t sewn anymore; they’re heat-infused.” Even despite this, multiple employees of Draper have now used their valuable time to create masks for their local community.

Another story of #AVgood: Labuskes recently chatted with Steve Durkee at Legrand, who also saw a need in their community; Legrand turned portions of its production line over to make masks and have now made 40,000 for Indiana healthcare workers. Countless employees of Legrand are also using their resources to bring live church broadcasting to their communities.

And let’s not forget about the Almo and Bloom ventilator-refurbishment project — an idea born out of innovation from the AV creators at Almo. “They saw a need, and they connected that need,” Labuskes said.

Gary Kayye_Dave Labuskes

The second truth: nothing comes free in life. There’s a negative connotation around “no one gets a free lunch,” suggesting people ultimately have ulterior motives — but in this time of crisis, Labuskes said, we’ve seen the truest, most pure form of kindness and giving from the AV community now. We hope that’ll continue, as the industry now thinks long-term about how to be better partners to their customers when this is all over.

Among other #AVgood stories shared, Labuskes offered his learnings from an environmental perspective too — with recent pledges made by Meyer Sound, Christie Digital and Bose, all committed to reducing their carbon footprints.


“None of us are working for the same company we worked for two months ago,” Labuskes said. “It may have the same name or address, but it’s in a totally different world.”

People are experiencing now what the AV industry has been drumming for years, he explained. This is opening the eyes of countless management teams around the world in that we can offer teleworking and save on physical space, for example; but remote from a distance isn’t remote collaboration necessarily — it has to work technically, seamlessly and invisibly, and it has to deliver an experience that connects human beings. If you want to have a great experience, you have to have great technology and understand how to use it too. Labuskes added that companies are going to have to continue to pivot — much like they’ve already done so far — particularly in houses of worship, healthcare and collaboration. 

“We won’t make our livings the same way tomorrow,” Labuskes said. The AV industry is at the center of the connections we’re experiencing today, in our homes, in our churches and more. While the connections we experienced yesterday in stadiums and venues were also enabled by AV, we must also be the catalyst for extending those experiences out of the venues now. The same people who provided an amazing AV experience in live events are the exact same people who can extend that experience out to a virtual audience. That is going to be highly demanded in the coming months. That’s also the strength and diversity of the AV industry, and it comes back to us as an industry at its core and what we’re here to do — to serve people, and to serve them with great audiovisual experiences. Every AV professional has to recommit to learning the technology that has become mission-critical to the world; we also need to champion diversity of thought and background, Labuskes concluded. 

Join Us for LAVNCH 2.0!

Again, if you’re interested in attending LAVNCH 2.0 the week of June 22 (it’s free to attend!), go ahead and join the list here; spots will fill up fast.

Also, you can check out our LAVNCH WEEK microsite here to see all the articles (like this one) and public videos from the week and more.

See you for LAVNCH 2.0 — and hang in there, #AVtweeps.