Applied Truss and Electronics (ATE) has been supplying high quality truss and electronics solutions since 1981. “Trusses are everywhere!” says Mike Rampmeyer, COO. They are a major building component in churches, universities and concert venues. The aluminum tubing structures provide support for lighting, backdrops at concerts or sporting events, movie sets and trade shows.
Everything is manufactured in the USA, the majority in the 60,000-square-foot building in Newport News. The facility also houses the electronic division and offices. “We are busier than ever,” says Rampmeyer. “It is a challenge having enough welders to keep up with the demand. We have more work now than at any other time in the company’s history.” ATE’s skilled employees include electrical engineers, CAD designers, machinists as well as certified welders. “We are proud of our employees,“ Rampmeyer says.” Many have been with us for years.”
Much of the truss work is for one-time events, such as graduations, the Super Bowl, concerts and TV shows. “Our products were used for the TV drama Blue Bloods,” says Rampmeyer. Some of the company’s specialty items were featured on The Voice TV show.
“We sell our products everywhere except Europe,” says Rampmeyer. “Our main customers are in Canada, South America, Mexico, the Caribbean and northeastern U.S.” Other products include portable crank lifts, ground support systems, roof systems, lighting controllers, power distribution and other accessories. Equipment is also supplied to filmmakers, television production crews and arenas. “In the movie Lincoln, the White House was made of trusses and foam,” says Rampmeyer with a smile.
Photos on the company’s website gallery provide a glimpse into the magnitude and variety of ATE’s accomplishments.
ATE was founded in Charlotte, N.C., in 1981. The current owner, Scott Humphrey, bought it in 1993 and relocated to Newport News in 1996.
Rampmeyer worked in accounting after college. “My love of live music led me to the concert industry, where I spent 15 years,” he says. “I produced national act concerts.” What does a producer do? “He makes the event happen,” says Rampmeyer, adding,
“My accounting plus music plus theatre industry experience made me a perfect fit for my current COO position.”
Rampmeyer is also the production manager for the Rock Legends Cruise, which sails to the Caribbean. He has been part of this for nine years. “It is the largest music cruise in the world,” he says. “No, it is not a vacation. I usually work 20-hour days!”
Rampmeyer plays tennis and attends concerts with his wife, Amy. “Music is my passion and I like all kinds,” he says. They own a 13-year-old Doberman named Gracie.
TO THE POINT:
Applied Truss and Electronics
Address: 722 Blue Crab Rd., Newport News VA 23606
Contact: Mike Rampmeyer, COO