Meet LIA’s 2011 President and Board of Directors

Stephen Capp is the Laser Institute of America’s (LIA) 2011 president. Capp graduated from the Milwaukee School of Engineering in 1978 with degrees in electrical power engineering technology and industrial management. It didn’t take him long to put this education to good use.

“After a short career as an engineer working for a defense contractor, I started in the laser industry in 1979 when my father and I started Laserage. In the beginning, I did everything from laser repair to running the product on the laser prior to taking on a management role as the company grew,” he said.

Today, Capp is CEO of Laserage Technology Corporation and has worked in the laser industry for over 30 years. Laserage, based in Waukegan, Ill., is an international supplier of laserprocessed materials and is now one of the largest laser job shops in the U.S. Laserage, an ISO 9001-2008 and ISO 13485 registered company, specializes in cutting, drilling and welding of a wide variety of materials.

“We currently have about 150 people operating 70 lasers of many different types, and the largest growing market for the company is the medical device industry.”


LIA Involvement & Goals

Stephen Capp has been a member of the LIA since 1992 and was the 2010 president elect, served several terms as treasurer and has been a member of the board of directors for over 10 years.

“LIA is an organization of which I am very happy to be a part. The LIA needs people who are willing to step up and give of their time to advance the organization’s cause for the good of the whole laser industry. I had served several years as a member of the executive committee and felt I understood the organization and wanted to continue to do what I could to contribute toward its success,” he answered about his impetus to become president.

Capp has a few large tasks he is undertaking during his term as LIA 2011 president.

“During my term I plan to work closely with Peter Baker (LIA executive director) and staff with the goal of moving the LIA back to the success it had enjoyed prior to this recession.

“It is also my goal during my term as president to see the successful launch of the new Lasers in Manufacturing Event (LME) that will be held in September in Chicago,” he said.

The mission of LIA’s LME is to provide a one-stop event for companies interested in integrating laser technology into their production. Attendees will learn about automation equipment, laser choices, beam delivery, safety considerations, applications development and meet exhibitors that supply these products & services. LME will be the place in the United States to see the latest in laser technology, network with the industry’s elite and find solutions to current and future manufacturing needs.

Although Capp runs a company and an international society, he still finds time for other pursuits. Married for over 30 years with two grown children, his son lives and works in the Washington D.C. area with his new wife, and his daughter is attending graduate school in Chicago. On the side Capp enjoys fly-in fishing in Canada and sailing on the Great Lakes with his wife Carol. Here’s wishing Stephen Capp a successful year as LIA president.


Executive Committee


President Elect Reinhart Poprawe received a M.A. in physics from California State University in Fresno in 1977. After completion of his Ph.D. in physics (Darmstadt, 1984) he joined the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology in Aachen, Germany where he worked as head of a department for laseroriented process development. Since 1996 he has been managing director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology and holds the University Chair for Laser Technology at the RWTH Aachen. Currently he is a member of the board on the AKL Arbeitskreis Lasertechnik e. V. Aachen. In 2006 he became fellow of the LIA and has been an LIA board member since 2001. He also chairs the RWTH-International Board and is the Rectors delegate for China.



Treasurer Yongfeng Lu is currently the Lott Chair Professor of Engineering at the University of Nebraska Lincoln. Lu received his BEng degree from Tsinghua University (China), M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees from Osaka University (Japan) in 1984, 1988, and 1991 respectively. Besides the fundamental research work that led to a large number of publications and a number of national and international awards, he also has successfully developed a number of laser-based material processing technologies and commercialized them in industries. In the past few years, he received around $10 million of research funding from DoD, NSF, DOE, NRI, private foundations and industry, including a MURI grant from ONR. He served as the general chair for ICALEO in 2007 and 2008.



Secretary Klaus Löffler graduated from the University of Stuttgart with a master’s in mechanical engineering. Since 2009 he is responsible for the strategic industry development for the TRUMPF Laser und Systemtechnik. In 2004 he founded the Automotive Laser Conference in Wolfsburg, Germany, which together with ALAW and JALAW builds a global conference partnership. In 2006 he took over international sales at TRUMPF Lasers and Systems and in 2007 became an LIA board member. He serves on the board of the SLT conference and other events with the goal to ensure the global growth of laser technology.



Immediate Past President Nathaniel Quick is a fellow of LIA and president and chief technical officer of AppliCote Associates, LLC, Orlando, Fla., a technology development company and CTO of !nflect, LC, a technology licensing firm. AppliCote Associates collaborates with academic institutes, including the University of Central Florida/CREOL. Quick has a Ph.D. from Cornell University in materials science and engineering and is a UCF Florida Photonics Center of Excellence advisory board member, UCF Industrial Advisory Committee member, a fellow of the African Scientific Institute, a past guest researcher at NIST and past member of the Army Science Board. He currently holds 39 U.S. patents and has over 60 publications.


2011-13 Board of Directors


Eckhard Beyer is the executive director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Material and Beam Technology IWS in Dresden/Germany, which engages in application-oriented research and development in the area of laser and surface technology. He is full professor for laser and surface technology, executive director of the Institute of Surface and Manufacturing Technology and dean of the faculty of mechanical engineering at the Dresden University of Technology. He graduated from the University of Technology Darmstadt with a degree in physics and received a Ph.D. in physical engineering. Beyer has been engaged in the organization and chairing of several international conferences, such as ICALEO® and LIM. He is author of approximately 400 publications and owner of about 65 patents.



Ken Dzurko is general manager of SPI Lasers LLC, Santa Clara, Calif., and is responsible for the company’s business in the Americas. A U.K.-based company, Dzurko joined SPI Lasers in 2007 and manages sales, service and applications personnel based in the U.S. The Santa Clara office provides laser applications support to customers worldwide and collaborates with various academic and development institutions. He earned his Ph.D. from USC in 1989 and has worked with diode and fiber lasers and associated optical devices in different applications.




Richard Harvey received his DrPH from the University of Michigan (2002) in radiological health then accepted a position at Roswell Park Cancer Institute (RPCI) where he is now director of radiation and laser safety. He is responsible for the safe use of lasers in research, medicine and education and developed a laser safety program from the ground up. He is a certified CMLSO and CLSO and a certified and licensed health and medical physicist in New York. Harvey is an assistant professor in nuclear medicine and physiology and biophysics at the University of Buffalo. He is a member of the ANSI SSC-3 committee for laser safety in health care.



Markus Kogel-Hollacher began in the laser industry working for his M.S. degree at the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology in 1994. After earning his degree in physics from the RWTH Aachen University in Germany, he joined Precitec Optronik GmbH in Rodgau, Germany continuing with an emphasis on transferring R&D results to industrial solutions. In his position as head of the R&D department projects in the Precitec Group, he oversees national and international governmentallyfunded projects. In 2008 he obtained his Ph.D. from the Technical University of Berlin, Germany.




David Krattley is the vice president of sales for Preco Inc.’s Laser Equipment Division (metals markets) in Somerset, Wis. He started at Preco (formerly Laser Machining Inc.) in 1989 after graduating from the University of St. Thomas. Currently, Krattley is directing application development with the latest in fiber and diode-based laser sources. He also consults on areas to focus and has done several projects with graduating seniors at the university’s laser program. He has been actively attending, chairing and presenting papers at various laser related seminars for the past 20 years.





William Lawson, P.E., founded NewTech Development, Somerset, Wis., in 2005 to focus on helping emerging market high technology companies develop and implement strategies for growth. From 2002-05 he was chief technology officer for Preco Laser Systems of Somerset. Before 2002 he was the majority owner of Laser Machining, Inc. (LMI), which he started in 1978 with one 50 W CO2 laser. When it was sold, LMI had grown to having over 35 industrial lasers and 225 employees serving multiple industrial markets by merging two laser businesses, an advanced processing job shop with custom systems manufacturing. He holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and has completed substantial additional course work in mechanical engineering, electronics and material science at the University of Minnesota-Minneapolis. He has served the LIA as a director, treasurer in 1999, president-elect in 2002 and president in 2003.



Juan Pou (Ind.Eng., MSc., Ph.D.) holds a chair of applied physics at the University of Vigo in Spain. He began to work with lasers in 1985 as a student and helped to develop from scratch the larger laser materials processing research group in Spain. He is now the leader of that group and director of the Research Center for Advanced Industrial Technologies and Processes, also in Vigo. At present he is involved in the development of innovative processes such as writing micrometric metallic lines by laser micro-cladding and laser spinning of bioglass nanowires for bone recovery. He is author or co-author of more than 90 papers in scientific journals, 100 conference papers and has been awarded 15 patents. Pou is a regular presenter and chairman at ICALEO and PICALO and has served on the LMP ICALEO Committee several years.



Robert Thomas received his B.S. degree in physics from Pittsburg State University, Pittsburg, KS in 1989 and his Ph.D. in physics from the University of Missouri–Columbia in 1994. He has worked in the fields of spectroscopy for strained-layer semiconductor heterostructures while a student, and more recently in the areas of experimental and theoretical biomedical optics with the USAF Research Laboratory at Brooks City-Base, Texas. From 1996 to 2002 he served as a research physicist in industry with TASC and Northrop-Grumman Corporation. In 2002 he joined the USAF Research Laboratory where he holds the title of Principal Research Physicist. He has authored and co-authored more than 25 peer-reviewed papers and more than 50 contributed papers in the areas of laser-tissue interactions, tissue optics, computer simulation and laser safety exposure limit definitions. In 2007 Thomas was named a fellow of the LIA.



John Tyrer was awarded his Ph.D. (1990) for his work on the application of pulsed lasers to speckle and holographic interferometers. After working in the automobile industry as an experimental test engineer/designer, he was appointed as senior lecturer to the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Loughborough University in 1988 with research interests in optical metrology, higher power lasers and laser safety. In 1996, Tyrer established a university spinout company, Laser Optical Engineering, to take licensed products to the marketplace. The company currently employs 12 people and produces laser safety equipment, diffractive optics for high power lasers and instruments. Tyrer has published over 100 journal papers and currently has 12 patents and two pending, is presently an advisor to various U.K. government agencies and is a fellow of the LIA. He is a regular presenter and chairman at ICALEO and ILSC, and was conference chair for ILSC 2007.



Steven Weiss is one of the founders and primary owners of Innovative Laser Technologies, Inc (ILT) in Minneapolis, Minn. Weiss started his career as a special machine designer in the early 1980s. He has over 15 years of experience in laser industry where he designed the Laserdyne 890, but in April 1998, Weiss and his partners got together and formed ILT. Since its inception, ILT has sold and installed over 240 laser workstations in many of the different laser markets worldwide. Steve’s primary responsibility started out in designing many of the laser workstations. He has also held the role of project manager and led the outside sales effort for many years. His current position is in the Business Development Group and he is the treasurer on ILT’s Board of Directors.



Magdi Azer, GE Global Research

Craig Blue, Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Paul Denney, Lincoln Electric

Larry Dosser, Mound Laser & Photonics Center, Inc.

Thomas Lieb, L*A*I International

Xinbing Liu, Panasonic Boston Laboratory

Andreas Ostendorf, Ruhr-University Bochum

Islam Salama, Intel Corporation

Bahaa Saleh, CREOL, University of Central Florida

Michael Schmidt, Bayerisches Laserzentrum GmbH



Milan Brandt, RMIT University

Ben Edwards, Duke University Medical Center

Bo Gu, IPG Photonics Corporation

Lin Li, University of Manchester

William O’Neill, University of Cambridge

Chuck Ratermann, RPMC Lasers, Inc.

Koji Sugioka, Riken

Sri Venkat, Coherent, Inc.

Sheldon Zimmerman, Naval Surface Warfare Center


About the Author
Steven Glover is a proud member of the LIA staff. When he is not at work he is actively involved in several charitable efforts.
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