Steve Alcorn

Chief Executive Officer

Biographical Summary

Steve Alcorn (born 1956) is an entrepreneur, engineer, inventor, author and teacher best known for his involvement in the theme park industry. Born in 1956, he graduated from the Harvard School for Boys (now Harvard-Westlake School) in 1973 and received a Bachelor of Science degree in engineering from UCLA in 1977. He was a Hughes Aircraft Company master’s fellow from 1977 through 1979. As a co-founder of MicroDaSys, he was an early pioneer of computer peripherals.

In 1982 he joined Walt Disney Imagineering (then known as WED Enterprises) as a consultant, where he worked on the electronic systems for Epcot Center. During his two years with Imagineering he designed show control systems for The American Adventure, wrote the operating system used in the parkwide monitoring system, and became Imagineering’s first Systems Engineer, heading up mechanical, electronic and software systems for the Journey Into Imagination ride.

In 1985 he became Vice President of Engineering and later Chief Operating Officer for Linn Electronics, the inventors of the digital drum machine. He reshaped the engineering department and assembled a team to work on the problem-plagued Linn 9000 drum machine, and designed the Linn Sequencer and Linn Drum Midi Studio.

In 1986 he founded Alcorn McBride & Associates, predecessor to Alcorn McBride Inc. The company initially concentrated on providing engineering services to the music industry, designing products for Akai, 360 Systems and Forat Electronics. In 1988 Mr. Alcorn designed the company’s first show controller, the V16, which was used in Wonders of Life at Epcot, and later became the parkwide standard throughout most of the world’s theme parks. He also directed the team that developed the Digital Binloop multi-track audio system that is used in nearly every major theme park attraction. In 2003 he won the Florida Governor’s Award recognizing his Digital Video Machine high definition player as the year’s best new product. In 2010 Alcorn McBride was recognized for the third time by Inc. Magazine as one of the nation's fastest growing companies.

Mr. Alcorn is the author of the novels Everything In Its Path, A Matter of Justice, and (under a pseudonym) Ring of Diamonds. He also wrote Travel Kid (a pictorial travel journal), How to Fix Your Novel, and the Epcot history, Building a Better Mouse: The Story of the Electronic Imagineers Who Designed Epcot. His most recent book is Theme Park Design: Behind the Scenes with an Engineer.

Through Internet instruction provider Education To Go, Mr. Alcorn teaches online classes at 1400 universities and colleges worldwide. His classes include Write Fiction Like A Pro, Mystery Writing, Advanced Fiction Writing, and Writing Young Adult Fiction. He also teaches a Theme Park Design workshop at imagineeringclass.com.

He has been married to his high school sweetheart, Linda McBride, since 1978. They have one child, Dani Alcorn.

 


Accomplishments

CEO of the industry leading company for theme park Audio and Video control and reproduction.

Chief Operating Officer supervising engineering, manufacturing, marketing and finance departments of a $5 million high technology musical instrument manufacturer.

Directed an engineering staff of forty mechanical, electronic and software engineers in the design and production of leading edge equipment used for the development of Winchester and optical disk technology.

Developed numerous sophisticated electronic products from initial concept through production. Products include virtual memory systems, digital signal processors, laser positioning systems, 200 MHz signal analysis equipment, computer graphics devices, and electronic musical instruments.

Winner of the 2003 Florida Governor's New Product Award, for the Digital Video Machine HD.

Recent Projects

Parkwide programming of show and audio systems for Legoland California. Worldwide installation and programming of hundreds of attractions at themeparks, world's fairs, museums and other themed entertainment venues. ScriptOS Operating System design. Robotics control of semiconductor processing plant, digital audio sampling system, interactive video disk system control, digital reproducing musical instruments, MIDI merger, 16 bit digital sampling system, show and ride control hardware, software and safety analysis, servo systems, projector controls, local area network gateway, RF camera tracking system, 24 bit digital recording system, distributed processing card key access system, television studio automated curtain control system, hundreds of installations at all Disney, Universal and other theme parks around the world.

Experience

Alcorn McBride Inc., Orlando, FL, Chief Executive Officer

Directs the design, development, and corporate operations of the leader in audio, video, show and lighting control products for themed entertainment. Responsible for management of all phases of business operation. Alcorn McBride Inc. was founded in 1986 and has equipment installed in every major theme park worldwide.

Linn Electronics, Inc., Tarzana, California, Chief Operating Officer

Directed the engineering and programming staff in the design of state of the art products on extremely tight development schedules. Promoted to Chief Operating Officer, responsible for all corporate activities within the first year of employment.

Cambrian Systems, Inc., Westlake Village, California, Director of Engineering

Managed a diverse staff of over forty mechanical, electronic and software engineers involved in new product development of advanced electronic systems. Negotiated contracts, calculated budgets, and scheduled production. Interfaced extensively with other corporate management, providing marketing and sales support, financial analysis and long range planning.

Walt Disney Imagineering, Glendale, California, Consultant

Designed, programmed, and supervised the installation of large scale animation, ride control and monitoring systems for Epcot Center, Florida. Managed mechanical, electronic and software engineers to achieve timely completion of attraction systems. Supervised safety analysis of ride control systems.

Co-designed the American Adventure Pavilion stage control system, supervised electrical, mechanical and software redesign of the Imagination Pavilion ride control system, wrote the Epcot Monitor Cabinet and Park Function Controller Operating Software.

MicroDaSys, Inc., Los Angeles, California, Co-Founder

Designed products which accounted for $5 million in sales, including a 68000 machine incorporating a proprietary virtual memory design and three co-processors to achieve a sustained execution speed of close to two million instructions per second. Managed a company of thirty people.

Hughes Aircraft Company, El Segundo, California, Masters Fellow

Designed digital and microprocessor hardware and software used to test spacecraft flight hardware.

Education

Hughes Aircraft Masters Fellow. Research completed for the Master of Science Degree in June, 1980.

Bachelor of Science, Electrical Engineering, UCLA.

Online Classes Taught by Steve


Theme Park Design Workshop

Write Fiction Like A Pro

Mystery Writing

Advanced Fiction Writing.

 

Publications


Everything In Its Path

A Matter of Justice

Ring of Diamonds

Travel Kid

Building a Better Mouse: The Story of the Electronic Imagineers Who Designed Epcot

Theme Park Design: Behind the Scenes with an Engineer

 

 





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