Los Angeles Regional Chapter of the Acoustical Society of America

Southern California has a rich and varied acoustics community.  Here in the Los Angeles chapter of the Acoustical Society of America, we comprise a community of students, researchers, active industry professionals, and distinguished retirees. All are welcome to join us at our monthly meetings where we discuss various topics running the gamut of the field of acoustics.


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Here’s our schedule from January to May!

  • January 16, 2024 – Eric Friedlander, Acoustic Research Systems – Setting The Tone for Launch: Acoustics & Aerospace
  • February 20, 2024 – Dennis Paoletti, Paoletti Consulting – The History of Acoustical Consulting in the San Francisco Bay Area
  • March 19, 2024 – Shrikanth Narayanan, USC Viterbi School of Engineering
  • April 16, 2024 – Roderick Mackenzie, Soft dB – Speech Privacy Measurements and Standards
  • May 21, 2024 – Short Takes at CinemaTech

We’re looking forward to seeing you at the next event! 


For our May meeting, ASA-LA is hosting a series of Short Takes with multiple presenters each allotted <7 minutes to present their topic and slides

Here are the list of presenters and presentations!

  • Indi Savitala – Selecting Patient Safety Products in Acoustical Design

  • Tony Hoover – Formula for Acoustical Privacy (And a Thank You to Mentors)

  • Samantha Rawlings – Jerry Christoff, a Career in Acoustics 1956-2017

  • Nick Antonio – Some Thoughts On  A Superhero

  • Abigail Davis – Ottawa to LA- A Summary of the 186th Meeting of the ASA

  • Tyler Adams – Ceramic Foam

  • Scott Coverdale – Acoustical Transparency of Textiles

  • Jim White – Wind Farm Noise – On/Off Test Method

ASA LA will be meeting at a different location this month:

CinemaTech Design Center & Showroom

Pacific Design Center – Blue

8687 Melrose Ave

M26, West Hollywood, CA 90069

With the following agenda:

  • 6:30PM – 7:30PM – AV Home Theater Demos & Social Mixer (food & drinks provided)

  • 7:30PM – 8:30PM – Meeting

  • 8:30PM – 9PM – Discussions

PARKING: Prepaid parking passes will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. The parking entrance is on Melrose. Carpooling is encouraged.

ONCE YOU ARRIVE: CinemaTech is located on the Mezzanine Level in the Blue building. There is a ramp near the Security kiosk in the Blue building. There will be wayfinding signs provided.


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2024 Meeting History

January 2024 - Setting The Tone for Launch: Acoustics & Aerospace

Eric Friedlander is the CTO and Co-Founder of Acoustic Research Systems (www.acousticrs.com). He has a BS in Audio Technology from American University in Washington, DC. Before founding ARS, Eric was a product and business development manager at Harman Professional for the JBL Professional Tour Sound portfolio. He has over ten years’ experience in the application of acoustics to aerospace testing, and over twenty years’ experience in live sound production as a mix engineer and PA systems engineer, providing design and application support for deployments ranging from small venues to stadiums.

February 2024 - The History of Acoustical Consulting in the San Francisco Bay Area and Los Angeles Area…since the ‘60’s

Dennis Paoletti – FASA FAIA FSMPS Paoletti Consulting

In January 2023 Dennis Paoletti led an initial program to kick off the new Regional Chapter of the ASA San Francisco Bay Area. The program was appropriately titled “The History of Acoustical Consulting in the San Francisco Bay Area…since the ‘60’s”.

It was an interesting program of personal and career stories by some acoustical consulting “Elders” from the San Francisco Bay Area (including Joel Lewitz, David Schwind and Derek Watry) remembering some of the “Pioneers” of the industry who have passed. Dennis has accepted our invitation to present a similar program to the ASA LA Chapter with additional references and reflections regarding his experiences in the Los Angeles area during his 55-year consulting career.

Growing up on the east coast, Dennis attended Brooklyn Technical HS where he studied architecture. He then attended Penn State University where he studied architecture and got introduced to acoustics. Upon graduating in 1967, he accepted a job with Bolt Beranek and Newman in their newly opened San Francisco office, managed by Red Wetherill and Warren Blazier. In 1976 he stepped out on his own with Joel Lewitz and in 2000 merged his own firm with Shen Milsom and Wilke. Since 2012 he has been providing independent acoustical consulting services from the San Francisco Bay Area.

March 2024 - Bridging Speech Science and Technology - Now and Into the Future

Signal Analysis and Interpretation Laboratory | https://sail.usc.edu/people/shri.html

Speech research is remarkable in so many ways––in its essential human-centeredness, the rich interconnections between the science and technology, and its wide-ranging impact that is both fundamental and applied.  Crucial advances in speech science research catalyze and leverage technological advances across the machine intelligence ecosystem, from sensing and imaging to signal processing and machine learning. Likewise, creation of speech-centric societal applications benefits from an understanding of how humans produce, process, and use speech in communication. In these complementary endeavors, two intertwined lines of inquiry endure: illuminating the rich information tapestry and inherent variability in speech and creating trustworthy speech technologies.

This talk will highlight some advances and possibilities in this multifaceted speech research realm. The first is capturing and modeling the human vocal instrument during speaking and how related technological and clinical applications leverage this technology.  The second focuses on speech-based machine intelligence tools to support research and clinical translation related to human health and wellbeing. Finally, the talk will highlight the critical goal of designing trustworthy speech and spoken language machine intelligence tools that are inclusive, equitable, robust, safe, and secure.

Biography of the Speaker:

Shrikanth (Shri) Narayanan is University Professor and Niki & C. L. Max Nikias Chair in Engineering at the University of Southern California (USC), where he is VP for Presidential Initiatives, Professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering, Computer Science, Linguistics, Psychology, Neuroscience, Pediatrics, and Otolaryngology—Head & Neck Surgery, Director of the Ming Hsieh Institute and Research Director of the Information Sciences Institute. Prior to USC, he was with AT&T Bell Labs and AT&T Research. He is a Visiting Faculty Researcher with Google Research.  His interdisciplinary research focuses on human-centered sensing/imaging, signal processing, and machine intelligence centered on human communication, interaction, emotions, and behavior.  He is a Fellow the Acoustical Society of America, IEEE, ACM, International Speech Communication Association (ISCA), the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Association for Psychological Science, the Association for the Advancement of Affective Computing, the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering, and the National Academy of Inventors. He is a Guggenheim Fellow and member of the European Academy of Sciences and Arts, and a recipient of many awards for research and education including the 2023 ISCA Medal for Scientific Achievement and the 2023 Richard Deswarte Prize in Digital History. He has published widely and his inventions have led to technology commercialization including through startups he co-founded: Behavioral Signals Technologies focused on AI based conversational assistance and Lyssn focused on mental health care and quality assurance.

April 2024 - Speech Privacy Measurement and Standards: ASTM, ISO, and the Next 10 Years

This presentation will firstly present a review and comparison of current ASTM and ISO standards and methods used to assess speech privacy in office and healthcare environments. Standards reviewed will include ISO 3382-3, ISO 22955, ASTM E1130, E2368, and E1574. Some unstandardised metrics in common usage will also be included in the review.

A review of the privacy requirements set out in commonly used criteria guides (ANSI S12.70, LEED, and WELL) will also be presented and the requirements compared.

The presentation will then summarise proposed changes to the current versions of many of these standards, as well as the state of the discussions within working groups looking to develop new standards (including Sound Masking performance classification, Healthcare Speech Privacy, In-situ testing of furniture assemblies and privacy modules).

Dr. Roderick Mackenzie is currently the Deputy Director of Acoustical Consulting at Soft dB, one of Canada’s largest specialised acoustical consultancies with offices across Canada and Europe. At Soft dB, Dr. Mackenzie supervises most of Soft dB’s architectural projects, focusing on interior and exterior sound insulation; speech privacy; reverberation control; and building services / mechanical systems noise and vibration control.

Dr. Mackenzie is currently the Chair of the ASTM E33.02 Speech Privacy Standards Sub-Committee, sits on the ASTM E33 Executive Committe for Building and Environmental Acoustics, a registered Chartered Engineer in the UK, and a member of INCE, IOA, CAA-ACA, and ASA.

Dr. Mackenzie represents Canada on several ISO TC 43 SC 1 and SC2 working groups, is a member of the Standards Council of Canada TC 43 SC 1 Noise and TC 43 SC 2 Building Acoustics Mirror Committees reviewing and working on all ISO acoustical standards. He is also currently a member of working groups reviewing ANSI S12.70 and Chapter 49 of ASHRAE HVAC Applications Handbook.


Thank you to our sponsors for contributing to the Los Angeles Chapter!