During the year 2018, three STC employees celebrate their 30-year anniversary with the company. Design Engineer Les Vaughn marks his anniversary today, and it also offers a chance for him to reflect on some of the many memories of his time at STC.

Vaughn works primarily in Magnetics and has designed several hundred transformers for STC customers. His transformer designs can be found in everything from large and small aircraft, broadcast towers, military equipment, medical devices, manufacturing machinery, common household appliances, and much more.

When Les started at STC, his first role was in testing.

“At that time, testing involved hooking up leads and checking meters—rather than using the advanced automated testing equipment we have now,” Vaughn says. “I worked closely with the plant manager at that time, Bob Simpson, who was very helpful, and I eventually transitioned over time to design engineering.”

Les was certainly qualified for that role, in both education and work experience. Prior to starting at STC, Les worked for about 12 years in broadcast engineering, and with a combination of electronics and mechanical work during a short stint at a printing press in Mt. Vernon, Illinois.

STC Electronics Photo of Les Vaughn
Les Vaughn in His Office Designing an Innovative New Transformer, circa 1993

“Some of my favorite types of magnetics projects are those for high-voltage transformers,” Vaughn says. “One project we did for a university was for a kind of high-voltage plasma application. Those projects are fun because you get a chance to be involved with cutting-edge technology—and, of course, you need to test those designs to see how big of an arc it will put out,” Vaughn adds with a laugh.

“We have a lot of experience, and our manufacturing capabilities really work to our advantage. Those things make a big difference when it comes to high-voltage transformers, not to mention instrument transformers, autotransformers, three-phase transformers. You get the idea.”

STC President Brad Cross also appreciates Vaughn’s expertise.

“Les is interested in technology, not only as a profession, but as an avocation or hobby, which is really beneficial.” Cross says. “He cares about his customers and finding the right solutions to fit their needs.

“Because of his expertise, he’s able to steer customers toward a design that not only meets their requirements, but is also economical and available within a reasonable amount of time. He’s a tremendous resource from that perspective too.”

Thanks for offering your expertise to those of us at STC and to our customers Les. Best wishes for the next 30 years!