Applied Electronics and Truss: Quality equipment for every event

Left: An example of Applied Electronics’ work at Hudson Fields in Los Angeles. (Photo courtesy fo Applied Electronics) Right: Applied Electronics personnel, left to right, back: Dave Holleran, Tracy Whittaker; middle: Mike Rampmeyer, COO, Phil Whitehurst, Robert Deanhofer; front: Charlie Blackmon. (Photo by Cathy Welch)

Applied Electronics and Truss manufactures and distributes a wide range of products used in concert venues, churches, television and movies. Aluminum truss, roof and staging systems, power distribution equipment, hoists and lighting control boards are some of the products offered at Applied.

Applied was founded in Charlotte, North Carolina, in 1981. Scott Humphrey, current owner and president, purchased the business in 1993. The decision was made in 1996 to relocate operations to Newport News.

Aluminum truss is the main product line of Applied. Truss is constructed of hand-polished tubing that provides strength and safety to a structure. Many of the products are custom made. Locally, products can be seen at Christopher Newport University for use at Ferguson Center and graduations, Fort Eustis and The NorVa Theatre in Norfolk. Many churches feature an array of Applied Electronics’ products.

Mike Rampmeyer, Applied’s chief operating officer since 2007, says, “We are extremely proud of the talent of our employees, who take pride in their work. We have been an industry leader for nearly 40 years.”

Concept drawings start the production process to ensure the end product is to clients’ satisfaction. “Customer service and safety are at the forefront of our work. Given the diversity of our client base, we must have very specific attention to detail,” Rampmeyer says. “Our work can be seen on television, on movie sets and at concerts and sporting events. Whether it is a project for Super Bowl, U.S. Open Tennis Championships or a small church, we provide consistent attention to detail.”

The company employs a variety of skill sets from electrical engineers, CAD designers to welders and machinists. “We have approximately 50 employees, several who have been here for more than 20 years,” Rampmeyer says. “This helps to keep the consistency of customer service and product evolution.” Rampmeyer moved to Newport News after spending more than 20 years producing concerts and special events.

Applied works with two sister companies in Delaware—Light Action and Staging Dimensions. “We are unique among our competitors in providing a turn-key solution for concert venues, churches, nightclubs and universities.” Projects include a one-of-a-kind roof structure for Duke University’s graduation, the Washington Nationals broadcast booth and a display case for the Philadelphia Eagles Super Bowl trophy.

Humphrey and his father had a vision when they purchased Applied Electronics. Newport News provided a hub for skilled workers and was central on the Eastern seaboard. This move has resulted in the growth of Applied in building size, employees and sales.

Applied ships its manufactured goods throughout the United States, Canada, South America, Mexico and the Caribbean. “Many of our products have become industry standard so our demand comes from around the world,” Rampmeyer says with a smile. “We have big plans for the months ahead—new products, updating manufacturing techniques— and we are always looking for new talent.”

Rampmeyer praises his dedicated staff and the work done, from the front office folks, the salespeople to the men and women who manufacture the product line.

Rampmeyer met his wife Amy during his years at Applied. They enjoy music, tennis and attending Waters Edge church where they both volunteer in production work.

Applied Electronics
Contact: Mike Rampmeyer, COO
Address: 722 Blue Crab Rd., Newport News, VA 23606
Phone: 757-591-9371
Fax: 757-591-9514

About Allan Hanrahan 8 Articles
Allan Hanrahan was born in North Carolina and reared on the Virginia Peninsula, living there until moving to Smithfield. He is married to Renee (nee Koskinas). Their sons are Gary and Gregory, and their granddaughters are Rebecca and Sarah. A graduate of Newport News High School, NASA Apprentice School, Christopher Newport College (now University), he did graduate study at George Washington University. He worked at NASA's Langley Research Center for 36 1/2 years, serving as an electronic instrument maker/technician, production controller (planner) and writer/editor, and for 22 years wrote the column Personnel Profiles for the in-house Langley Researcher. He has freelanced for the Daily Press, incorporating many of those articles into a book: “Times and Places: A Glimpse of Life on the Virginia Peninsula.” After retiring from NASA, Allan was a substitute school teacher and middle-school tutor. He has been writing for Oyster' Pointer since 2000, an activity that he enjoys immensely, primarily for the intellectual stimulation he receives from meeting and talking with many accomplished entrepreneurs, always gaining knowledge from their encounters.

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