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Andres Mayo, Outgoing AES President

This has been a very busy year for Andres Mayo, a multi-award-winning engineer with his own audio facility—Andres Mayo Mastering—in Argentina, and, for the last 12 months, AES president.

NEW YORK, NYThis has been a very busy year for Andres Mayo, a multi-award-winning engineer with his own audio facility—Andres Mayo Mastering—in Argentina, and, for the last 12 months, AES president. Juggling the demands of the position with running his own business, often working into the early hours of the morning, Mayo was nevertheless able to successfully advance the goals of the AES this year.

Two achievements in particular are points of pride with Mayo. Firstly, he helped establish the Financial Planning Committee, comprising Bill Foster (Chair), David Josephson and Glenn Lorbecki. “This Committee has put a huge amount of time to analyze our current financial status, which is key to making wise decisions in the short-and mid-term future,” he says.

Andres Mayo closed out his time as AES president, only to be elected to the NARAS Producers & Engineers Wing Advisory Council. Additionally, a study group coordinated by mastering engineer Bob Katz and TC-TB Chairman David Bialik put together a Technical Document (AES TD1004.1.15-10, available for download) detailing recommendations for loudness of audio streaming and network file playback for presentation during the New York convention. “That is a huge step towards setting a point of reference in a key issue like this. I am personally proud and thankful to the study group for delivering this Technical Document in time before the New York convention,” says Mayo.

As John Krivit prepared to take over as president at the end of the 139th AES Convention in New York, Mayo’s schedule was as busy as ever. During the convention, he moderated the Platinum Latin Producers & Engineers panel, presented 5.1 and 7.1 mixes in the PMC demo room, participated in the Recording Critiques sessions and judged the Recording Competition, even sponsoring the winner with a free mastering job.

“I have just been elected to become part of the NARAS Producers & Engineers Wing Advisory Council. I take this with great pride and responsibility,” adds Mayo, a two-time Grammy-winning audio engineer and producer with over 20 years of experience. He has more than 2,000 titles to his credit on a wide variety of release formats.

Education and networking are the two main pillars of the AES, Mayo believes. “Everything I have done, every single day during my term, has been related directly or indirectly to one of those two areas, or both. From mentoring a student to judging in the Recording Competition and from helping to create a local section to actively procuring ‘joint ventures’—co-chaired activities—with similar organizations, such as SMPTE, it all leads to new and rich networking possibilities for our membership.”

When he took the reins of the AES last year, Mayo observed that, as the first Latin American to hold the position of president, he was experienced with handling crisis. A year later, he says, “No time is crisis-free in this industry, especially in the last 15 years. We had many tough decisions to make, and I am proud to say that I would make them again if needed. When you come from a distant region such as Latin America, not so much geographically as conceptually speaking, you learn to use that background to your benefit, thinking of new ways to overcome problems. And, more than anything, it helped me to smile, because there are truly much more dramatic situations out there than our difficulties.”

Membership is any society’s lifeblood, so how has the AES fared? “I don’t think we had especially strong growth in a single country this year,” emphasizes Mayo, who personally spread the word of the AES to more than a dozen countries this year, including Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Perú, Uruguay, Costa Rica, México, Poland (for the European AES Convention) and the United States. “But I know the numbers are increasing and there is bigger interest in the Society’s activities.”

Membership might increase in a given country, but it needs to be sustained, he also notes. “We had that situation in many countries in Latin America, but steady growth only happens after a number of years of consistently showing the industry that there is a very good reason to join the AES.”

Audio Engineering Society