LAC Group, the Leader in Information Curation and Knowledge Management, announced today that Rick Utley, Vice President – PRO-TEK Vaults, will retire effective December 31, 2014. In conjunction with the move, Utley will become a member of LAC’s Board of Directors, the parent company of PRO-TEK. Tom Regal, most recently of Iron Mountain, will assume Utley’s role as head of PRO-TEK and oversee the company’s Burbank, Calif. and Thousand Oaks, Calif. operations.
Utley’s retirement caps a distinguished, nearly five-decade long career in the motion picture and film archiving industries. Following tenures with MGM-Metrocolor and Technicolor Laboratory Services, Utley was selected by the Eastman Kodak Company to found, build and lead PRO-TEK Vaults in 1993. The first and only archival film storage facility of its kind, PRO-TEK was acquired from Kodak by LAC Group in November 2013, and recently celebrated its 20th Anniversary in Burbank, CA.
A mentor and innovator in the archival community, Utley has received numerous accolades and honors and was recently recognized by the Association of Moving Image Archivists (AMIA) as its 2014 O’Farrell Award recipient for his significant contributions to the organization and the archival community.
“Looking back over a 48 year career, I realize the significance of my film lab experience and what it meant to me in developing PRO-TEK,” commented Utley. “It’s not often you get a chance to build a state-of-the-art motion picture film preservation facility from a clean-sheet-of- paper, understanding the preservation needs of the moving image content owner.”
He continued, “PRO-TEK today is everything I wanted it to be in terms of having established a stellar reputation that is recognized worldwide. The team here, led by Operations Manager Jim Harwood, continues to amaze me, as no project has ever been too difficult. They work hand-in-hand with our customers in solving all manner of preservation challenges and dilemmas.”
Succeeding Utley will be Tom Regal, a long-time veteran of the digital media and archival communities. Mr. Regal’s career began over 20 years ago in the audio restoration industry with Chace Productions, Inc. (now Chace Audio by Deluxe). Thereafter, Regal embarked on decade long tenure with Universal Studio’s BluWave Audio Preservation and Restoration Services serving as one of the founding members of the organization. Most recently, Regal served as General Manager for the Western Region and the Digital Studios for Iron Mountain.
“PRO-TEK is the gold standard for film preservation with unsurpassed technical knowledge and expertise. They have earned the trust of the community; which is a testament to Rick and the team he has assembled over the years,” stated Regal. “I am very excited to be joining them and to continue building on Rick’s legacy,” he concluded.
Mr. Regal is an active participant in the archival community serving as a Member of the National Film Preservation Board and as a Member of the Board of Directors of AMIA and the AMIA Development Committee.
“It is a truly bittersweet moment for all of us at LAC Group,” noted LAC CEO Deborah Schwarz. “We are thrilled to have someone with Tom’s experience and energy joining the LAC family to propel PRO-TEK forward over the next twenty years. However, we will all miss the wisdom, experience, warmth and class Rick brought to every aspect of the business.”
Ms. Schwarz added, “While we are sad to lose him from a day-to-day perspective, I am personally honored that Rick will be joining our Board of Directors. We are committed to carrying on the legacy of service and expertise that Rick has established throughout his career and especially over these past twenty years with PRO-TEK,” she concluded.
“Stepping away from something you’ve poured your life into is never easy,” added Utley. “I just wish that I was ten years younger so that I could stay and enjoy the continued growth of PRO-TEK at the next level!” he mused. “Becoming a member of the LAC Board will allow me to stay involved and help LAC achieve its strategy addressing the rapidly changing archival needs of content owners in Hollywood and beyond,” concluded Utley.
About LAC Group
LAC Group has been helping its clients enact best practices and solve library and archival challenges since 1986. From information sciences staffing, to metadata creation, to consulting, spend management and physical media storage, LAC Group has a complete suite of solutions designed to help maximize the utility of real-time and archival information. A WBENC-certified woman-owned business, LAC Group continues to be the trusted choice of leading law firms, major studios, broadcasters, government agencies, Fortune 500 companies and universities seeking to manage the ever-increasing challenges of information and knowledge management. The company operates from three facilities in Greater Los Angeles (Century City, Burbank and Thousand Oaks) as well as offices in New York, Rockville, MD, Chicago, Denver, Boston and the United Kingdom.