Digging Deep

Your time is valuable, so we won’t go on and on. But, if you want to know the latest about S&N, we’ve captured the highlights for you.

News & Events

Cody Norman Achieves Journeyman Lineman Certification


S&N congratulates Cody Norman, newly certified Journeyman Lineman by the Commonwealth of Virginia. The certification is labor-intensive, requiring 8,000 man hours in the field and a written test. 

“This is a big step in Cody’s career,” says Debbie Scott, vice-president at S&N Communications. “I was able to get Cody on our team almost two years ago when we started working for Dominion. He set the certification as a milestone for himself and I assured him we would work with him and see that he reached it. We are all extraordinarily proud of him.”

Congratulations to Cody. We appreciate your drive, knowledge, commitment and hard work! 

Mike Peters Earns Level 2 iBwave Certification


Less than four months after earning the Level 1 iBwave certification, Mike Peters, the SCE DAS Field Manager, has earned the Level 2 iBwave certification.

Peters gained his extensive expertise at Siemen’s, Fujitsu, ADC, Dynis, CTS Corporation and Mastec Network Solutions before bringing his skills to S&N Communications. His skill set includes: Cable Networking, Distributed Antenna Systems (DAS), Voice over IP (VOIP); installation, splicing and termination of wires; design, installation and maintenance of copper- and fiber-based communications-network equipment; and installation and maintenance of communications and data centers, Cat 3, Cat 5, Cat 6, Catoa, 10gig, T-1 lines, fiber optic and wiring expertise and job surveying. 

A native New Yorker, Peters loves football and barbecuing. When he isn’t cheering on his team, he’s traveling. His passport sports stamps from Jamaica, the Bahamas, Trinidad, Tobago, Mexico and Canada. He’s also a musician, playing keyboard and operating live audio for events. 

For more information on iBwave certification, visit www.ibwave.com/LearningHub/iBwaveCertification.aspx

Underground Program In Virginia Yields Success


For the last 21 months, S&N has been working on a program for a large utility in Virginia providing aerial-to-buried conversions in areas prone to storm-related outages. 

Brian Sink, S&N’s Director – Communications/Energy Infrastructure for the Mid-Atlantic and North East, notes that during the initial phase of the project, S&N converted more than 50 miles of overhead lines to underground in portions of Virginia.

“This is a turn-key project,” notes Sink. “Not only are we doing what we always do with drilling and underground construction, we’re performing all aspects of electrical distribution work including setting transformers, completing terminations and energizing transformers. Also, we have partnered with a firm that assists us with right-of-way acquisitions and electrical distribution design. We’ve hired managers, customer-relations specialists and field labor ranging from overhead foreman and journeymen linemen to ground men and terminators.”

Work will continue in the state following strict project management and regulatory standards. 

S&N Cited in 2016 Excavation Safety Guide


The Excavation Safety Guide is an annual publication that outlines the excavation process from pre-planning to job completion with articles written by industry experts.

S&N is proud to be cited in the article Drawing the Line: Why Interstate Challenges Are Rising For Contractors. The article covers challenges excavation crews commonly encounter when placing interstate bids. Examples include staffing, licensing knowledge, understanding topographies, knowing how different states handle one call enforcement, and increased competition and pricing pressures when working for multiple utility companies. Different members of the S&N team were called upon to offer solutions to these challenges. We don’t have all the answers but, as always, we’re happy to share the knowledge we have in the hopes of bettering the industry and the great people working in it.

Read the full 2016 Excavation Safety Guide

Former Bechtel Project Manager New President of SCE/Tower 16


S&N Communications welcomes Michael Brant, a former project manager for Bechtel Infrastructure & Power Corp., as the new president for subsidiary companies SCE and Tower16. Brant comes to the position with more than 15 years experience in leading large and complex EPC projects, as well as holding extensive experience in business development, process and performance improvement, risk management and project recovery efforts.

A Six Sigma Champion and certified Project Quality Manager (PQM), Brant is known throughout the industry as a problem solver who builds strong teams while pushing projects through to successful completion.

“Having someone in this position who can unify and motivate a workforce that is literally spread across the country is extremely important to us,” says S&N Communications CEO Allen Powell. “Michael checks every box. He’s clearly demonstrated his ability to successfully develop and direct teams, while also being the long-term strategic thinker this position requires. We’re extremely excited to have him on board and eager to see what he can do.”

Brant has outlined for staff nine “buckets” he plans to focus on: safety, quality, cost, schedule, customer care, ethics, culture, people and innovation. 

“None of these areas exist in a bubble,” notes Brant. “My role is to provide the means for our teams to succeed in each of these areas, not sacrificing one for another.”

Brant is located in Columbia, Maryland, but will travel to the various SCE/Tower16 offices across the nation. As a casual golfer, he enjoys participating in charity events and is also a die-hard “do-it-yourselfer” when it comes to home improvement projects.

Please join us in welcoming Michael to the S&N team!

Read an interview with Michael Brant conducted by Senior Editor Sharpe Smith at Above Ground Level Media Group.

What’s Trending in DAS


It’s an exciting time for the Distributed Antenna System (DAS) industry, especially for those directly involved in the constant evolution of DAS systems. And not surprisingly, economic and social trends can and do influence how and when DAS systems are installed.

Three notable and growing trends catching the attention of the DAS industry these days include public safety, real estate development and customer retention. Marie Quizon, DAS Project Manager for SCE, a subsidiary of S&N Communications, explains the reasons behind the trends in a new article in ISE magazine, “What’s Trending in DAS.” The article also explores DAS cost control tactics and how to stay within the scope of your project.

The full article is available here: “What’s Trending in DAS.” For more information, email mjquizon@sceeng.com.

Mukib Mosleh Joins S&N AS SCE DAS RF Engineer


Mukib Mosleh has been hired as the SCE DAS RF Engineer for Maryland-based SCE, an end-to-end provider of professional services and turnkey wireless project management for the utility and telecom industry.

As an RF Engineer, Mosleh will be responsible for preparing DAS designs, cost estimates for DAS projects and statements of work (SOW). He’ll also conduct benchmark testing, troubleshooting, integration, and commissioning and submit technical DAS data reports to clients. Chiefly, he’ll serve as the Radio Frequency Technical Subject Matter Expert for the SCE DAS team.

Mosleh hails from Bangladesh, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering. He then moved to the States to continue his education in the field. While working on his graduate studies in College Park, Mosleh worked as a RF Engineer in Rockville, MD. He has since completed an MS in Telecommunications at the University of Maryland.

Mosleh has extensive knowledge in DAS network design, with a particular expertise in iBwave Design. “We’ve made a conscious decision to grow our team, given the ever increasing interest in DAS systems by our clients,” says DAS Project Manager Marie Quizon. “Mukib brings together the best of both worlds with strong analytical and technical skills. He’s a problem solver, which is what our division is all about.”

Mike Peters Earns Level 1 Ibwave Certification



Mike Peters, a senior DAS technician with SCE who holds nearly 20 years experience as a lead DAS installer and field manager, recently earned the Level 1 iBwave certification. The iBwave certification program is designed for wireless and radio system designers, radio network engineers, radio network planners, RF specialists and consultants, radio access network-development specialists and RF managers. It trains RF professionals to become in-building wireless technology experts. 

Peters gained his extensive expertise at Siemen’s, fujitsu, ADC, Dynis, CTS Corporation and Mastec Network Solutions before bringing his skills to S&N Communications. His skill set includes: Cable Networking, Distribution Antenna Systems (DAS), Voice over IP (VOIP); installs, splicing and termination of wires; design, install and maintenance of copper- and fiber-based communications network equipment; and installation and maintenance of communications and data centers, Cat 3, Cat 5, Cat 6, Catoa, 10gig, T-1 lines, fiber optic and wiring expert and job surveying. 

A native New Yorker, Peters loves football and barbecuing. When he isn’t cheering on his team, he’s traveling. His passport sports stamps from Jamaica, the Bahamas, Trinidad, Tobago, Mexico and Canada. He’s also a musician, playing keyboard and operating live audio for events. 

For more information on iBwave certification, visit www.ibwave.com/LearningHub/iBwaveCertification.aspx

Josh Hubbard Earns SpiderCloud Certification



Josh Hubbard, a DAS (Distributed Antenna System) field manager with S&N Communications’ subsidiary partner SCE, has earned the coveted SpiderCloud Certification.

SpiderCloud Wireless, a provider of scalable small cell systems, launched a partner program to recognize systems integrators who are qualified to deploy its small cells in the United States. SpiderCloud’s small cell network platforms allow mobile operators to deliver unprecedented cellular coverage, capacity and smart applications to enterprises and venues.

Hubbard underwent the two-day training with the goal of being able to offer SCE, and parent company S&N’s, customers enhanced capacity solutions.

With eight years experience in wireless, Hubbard is already responsible for the design, installation and commissioning of DAS and small cells for wireless carriers, ensuring wireless coverage, conducting surveys and supervising construction.

A Maryland native, Hubbard gained experience at Ridge Equipment Company and Haymaker Technologies before joining SCE in 2014. He’s worked on high-profile jobs, including FedEx Field, M&T Bank Stadium and Bryant Denny Stadium, as well as with cell carriers like AT&T.

SpiderCloud Wireless is based in Milpitas, California and is backed by investors Charles River Ventures, Matrix Partners, Opus Capital, Shasta Ventures and QUALCOMM. For more information visit spidercloud.com.


4 Ways We Can All Help Keep Locators Safe


Life happens. Which makes planning for it often challenging and sometimes impossible. Nowhere is this truer than in trying to see into the future and make plans for what it takes to keep workers safe. 

S&N President and CEO Allen Powell is featured in the Summer Digital Issue of Damage Prevention Professional, reflecting on Locator Safety Awareness Week and the collective responsibility we have to our locators. Powell cites encouraging awareness, slowing down, maintaining and following proper procedures, and doing things the right way as key standards to hold ourselves to, in an effort to plan ahead for safety.

Of course, saying what needs to be done and doing it are two different things. For ways on how to best implement these tips, read the full article, “Locating is Like Riding a Bike…in More Ways than One.”

James Gregory Promoted to Director of Application Development and Support


James Gregory has been promoted to director of application development and support.

Gregory will lead, mentor and coach S&N’s development, quality assurance, software support and project management teams, as well as help maintain client relationships. He will also work with management concerning software needs, budgetary needs, personnel, resource allotment and scheduling requirements for software systems.  Gregory will continue fostering S&N’s vision for employee development through driving each individual team member towards his or her fullest professional and personal potential.

Gregory holds degrees in both networking and programming and has 14 years of experience in software development.

When asked what he loves most about his job, Gregory highlighted his team, saying, “For me nothing is of greater satisfaction than seeing my team succeed. I understand that it’s the team who ultimately drives success, and I’m proud to say that I have a great team here at S&N.” Emphasizing his desire to stay current, Gregory notes he still loves to code!

Gregory also cited the work environment, business philosophy and opportunities to make a difference as reasons for his appreciation of S&N.

Gregory lives in Lexington, N.C. and enjoys spending time out on the lake with his family. He has been, and continues to be, a tremendous asset to his department and the S&N organization.


Stake Center Receives 2016 Best of Salt Lake City Award


S&N’s subsidiary partner Stake Center Locating has been selected for the 2016 Best of Salt Lake City Award in the Pipeline Locating Service Contractors category by the Salt Lake City Award Program.

Each year, the Salt Lake City Award Program identifies companies that they believe have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category. These local companies enhance the positive image of small businesses through service to their customers and our community.

Various sources of information were gathered and analyzed to choose the winners in each category. The 2016 Salt Lake City Award Program focuses on quality, not quantity. Winners are determined, based on the information gathered, both internally by the Salt Lake City Award Program and by data provided by third parties.

How Dating Skills Benefit Business Partnerships


S&N’s Senior Director of Business Development Chuck Baur has long been out of the dating game, but he’s figured out that business and personal relationships share some common ground. So, if you’re looking for a professional partnership that’ll last the test of time, check out Chuck’s “dating tips,” shared in the June digital issue of ISE magazine, to help you seek out, build and maintain better business relationships. 



Heather Pegram has been promoted to director, corporate risk and insurance.

This is a new position created within S&N to separate corporate risk from the safety department. Pegram will be responsible for identifying and eliminating risks that may result in property loss, injury or legal liability to the company. She’ll also oversee broker and carrier management, manage all casualty claims and set and evaluate performance standards, as well as work to lessen losses by implementing process and claims management best practices, while working to secure optimum coverage.

Pegram has more than 15 years experience in corporate risk. She’s a North Carolina-licensed property and casualty adjuster and earned the Associate Risk Management (ARM) professional designation. Prior to S&N, Pegram was with Volvo Group North America for six years. There, she managed a large deductible casualty claims program and was responsible for contractual insurance and risk transfer functions. 

Pegram’s expertise includes arbitration, having consulted as an arbitration writer for a national subrogation law firm and served as a panelist for Arbitration Forums, Inc. She joined S&N in April of 2015 as claims manager.

Originally from Georgia, Pegram holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Western Carolina University. Outside the world of risk management, she is an avid horseback rider and beachgoer with her husband and son.

S&N Launches Three New Safety Initiatives


With a renewed focus on worker training and field safety, S&N Communications has announced the launch of three new safety initiatives in Q2.

24/7 Nurse Hotline. S&N’s 24/7 nurse-triage service will kick off in late April/early May. Every employee will have access to a hotline where a nurse will help determine injury severity and the best course of action for immediate treatment. The nurse can recommend an urgent care facility, if needed, and forward risk-management documentation to the urgent care facility while alerting S&N of the injury and treatment location. The result will be quicker care that is appropriate for the specific injury.

Destination Zero Process Mapping. A one-stop repository will house all health and safety instances, safety training and audits, near misses, risk-management claims info and more. Per Allen, having all data gathered in one place allows for greater insight into how to improve safety and training in the future.

Employee Safety Committee. Comprised of both management and non-managerial employees, the safety committee will receive training on how to identify and eliminate hazards and be responsible for ensuring an open line of communication between the business units’ managerial and non-managerial staff on safety-related initiatives.  The committee will be given the authority to recommend and implement changes.


We don’t just practice safety. We share it. Read our article on Tower Climbing: Why “The Most Dangerous Job in America” Has Gotten Safer            

SCE Welcomes Connie Lewis as Construction Project Manager


When your father owns a construction company, it only makes sense that you feel at home in that environment. That’s how newly hired SCE construction project manager Connie Lewis found herself rising through the ranks of the construction industry.

With more than 20 years of construction and wireless experience under her belt, Lewis has held technical projects and construction manager positions at Sprint, Alcatel-Lucent and Nexlink Global Services. In her new role as construction project manager for SCE, Lewis is responsible for bid walks, crew hiring and oversight and ensuring projects complete on time and on budget.

“What intrigued me about this position is that it’s with a full tower-service company,” says Lewis. “This division has expanded from just maintenance to full-on construction and development.” Lewis notes part of her job is educating companies that SCE construction is more than just maintenance. “I’m hearing people say, ‘I didn’t know SCE did all of that. Overcoming that hurdle and getting the message out that we’re full-service is going to be a focus for me.”

Lewis, who splits her time between the office and field, currently oversees two crews but is in the midst of hiring for new projects. “This is a growing company. Work is coming in at a rapid pace and we’re doing everything we need to do to ensure we have the manpower and expertise to cover it.”

Lewis resides in Hagerstown Maryland. 

Distributed Antenna System (DAS) Division Launched


Clear and trustworthy wireless communications service is not a luxury in today’s world; it’s a necessity. To serve the growing communication needs in the public and private sectors, SCE has launched a new DAS (Distributed Antenna System) division.

DAS is a network of spatially separated antenna nodes designed to increase coverage and capacity within buildings, campuses or city centers. In order to provide a clear and reliable wireless signal, distributed antenna systems take a signal from a central location, like a cellular or public safety tower. DAS systems then amplify and condition the signal to provide coverage in areas that were previously without.

Solutions can be designed and installed during new construction or retrofitted to existing structures. SCE’s experienced in-house DAS team handles the entire project lifecycle, starting with a site survey, moving through design, installation, testing and maintenance.

DAS is a scalable solution that will enhance coverage needs wherever it’s needed.

“People connect, conduct business and, more or less, live on their phones,” says Sam Sacco, director of professional and construction services at SCE who oversees the new DAS division. “Whether in a store, restaurant, stadium or plaza, people expect seamless wireless connections and will take their business elsewhere if they don’t get it.”

To learn more about SCE’s DAS solutions, contact Marie Quizon at mjquizon@sceeng.com or Duncan Burdette at dburdette@sceeng.com.

Marie Quizon Joins SCE as DAS Project Manager


Marie Quizon has been hired as DAS (distributed antenna system) project manager for SCE. This is a new position within SCE. Quizon and her team is responsible for overseeing all DAS projects, including reviews of all RFPs, services and projects, from design to solution implementation. She will manage a team of two to 10, depending on project scopes.

Quizon began her career in project management in 2004 when she worked in the hospitality industry as a POS Project Manager for MICROS Systems, Inc. During her tenure at MICROS, Quizon managed various integrated, end-to-end solution projects for hotels, restaurants and theme parks.

Since 2010 Quizon has worked in the telecom industry for System Integrators managing DAS design and implementation solutions for AT&T, Verizon, The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA), The Fort McHenry Tunnel(s) and numerous government agencies and commercial businesses. In addition, and over the course of her career, Ms. Quizon has developed and maintained key, strategic relationships within the DAS industry.

Quizon holds a bachelor of arts degree in political science from the University of Maryland Baltimore County. She resides in Columbia, MD. 

Sam Sacco Joins SCE as Director of Professional and Construction Services



Sam Sacco, a 20-year veteran in the site acquisition and development field, has joined SCE as director of professional and construction services.  

In his new position, Sacco will manage all professional and technical services for SCE in the Columbia, MD office. Specifically, he will focus on real estate and program management, construction management—including evaluating, qualifying and managing subcontractors—and developing new client relationships. He will oversee a team of more than 50 professionals with an initial push on developing a fully-integrated DAS (distributed antenna system) competency with nationwide deployment.

 Over the course of his career, Sacco has successfully developed and led site development, construction, and technical services teams at a number of companies including Crown Castle, Ericsson and Alcatel Lucent. He has served in roles including director and vice president to oversee numerous large-scale infrastructure deployments and network upgrades in the United States, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

 Sacco holds a bachelor of science degree from the University of Pittsburgh and is fluent in Spanish. He is a resident of Fredrick, MD.

Crossing State Lines; Challenges and Solutions


Can you name the top five challenges excavating contractors face when crossing state lines? More to the point, do you have the know-how to address the problems and come out on top? We do. And we’re sharing what we know in the 2016 version of Excavation Safety Guide magazine. 

“Drawing the Line: Why Interstate Challenges Are Rising For Contractors”, pages 26-27. 

Learn The 8 Uncommon Traits To Look For In Your Leaders


“Who are the leaders in your company? If you mentally just ran through a list of your C-suite, you’re looking at leadership through a narrow lens. Having “manager” or “V.P.” behind a name may mean someone is good at his or her job, but it doesn’t magically confer leadership skills on a person.”

S&N’s CEO Allen Powell recently compiled a list for Damage Prevention Professional of eight traits we’ve found to be present in many of our company’s most effective leaders.

New S&N HR Director Brings Multi-National Company Experience and Focus


Jerry Carmichael, most recently the head of human resources partnering, commercial operations & marketing with Syngenta, a $15 billion Fortune 500 global agribusiness company located in Greensboro, NC, has joined S&N as senior director, human resources and benefits. Carmichael graduated from NC State University with a degree in textile management and is certified as a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) as well as a Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP).  

“I’ve worked in multiple industries, that being textiles, agricultural business, pharmaceuticals and medical devices with some of the best Fortune 500 companies around,” says Carmichael. “What drew me to this role is the chance lead the HR Function of a growing and fast-paced organization.”  

Per Carmichael, a focus for the HR Function in the company and for its subsidiaries in the coming year will be compliance, the Affordable Care Act, reacting to changes in various national, state, city and county laws where the companies do business and further aligning human resources business partners to serve as key contacts for each of the companies’ services – telecom, electric and gas construction, wireless network and tower construction, modification and maintenance, professional services and site development and underground utility locating.  

A resident of Greensboro, NC, Carmichael has attended HR leadership training at Cornell University as well as the Center for Creative Leadership. When not delving into the world of infrastructure construction HR, Carmichael enjoys time with family, golf, and is a season ticket holder for the Carolina Panthers.

Tower Climbing Safety Gets Spotlighted?


Tower climbing has been called the most dangerous job in America and for good reason. Historically, the on-the-job death rate for tower climbers has been nearly 10 times that of other construction workers. But thanks to new safety and accountability initiatives, specifically the 100% Tie-Off Initiative, tower climbing has gotten safer. In this month’s UTC Journal, find out what S&N CEO and President Allen Powell has to say about better equipment, better towers and why management must bear the burden behind most accidents. Read the full article here: “Tower Climbing: Why ‘The Most Dangerous Job in America’ Has Gotten Safer.”

Do You Need To Diversify?


If your biggest client walked out the door tomorrow, how long would your business be able to survive? In this month’s issue of AGL Magazine, S&N CEO and President Allen Powell discusses when and why you should consider diversifying your services, your client base and maybe even your company holdings.


S&N Communications. Can We Help You?


S&N Communications has enjoyed tremendous growth in the past few years. To help us manage this growth and stay nimble, we’ve opened a new call center in Greensboro, NC.  Call center staff will answer incoming questions regarding the installation of fiber optic and copper cables in the field and route calls to specific locations and field crews.

“Being responsive, not just to our customers, but also to our customers’ customers is part of what makes S&N a great partner,” says Debbie Scott, chief information officer at S&N Communications. “This expansion will help us continue the exemplary service we’ve become known for.”

Our customer care coordinators are the best in the business, trained to ensure concerns are addressed promptly and to our customers’ satisfaction. The new center houses 20 S&N staff members.

Give us a call. We’re ready for you.



Tackling challenges, solving problems and broadening reach. With more than 35 years of experience, S&N reaches past the obvious and finds different ways of looking at construction. Find out how in the Spring 2015 edition of Energy & Infrastructure magazine.



Property owners and managers often fear that FTTH construction will bring howls of disapproval from inconvenienced residents. S&N CEO and president Allen Powell offers tips and best practices (pizza party, anyone?) to minimize disruption and keep end users happy.



What’s your company’s safety record? While it’s easy during flush times to give lip service to the need for safety, too often the promise and commitment to safety fall by the wayside during the push to deliver. In this month’s issue of The Damage Prevention Journal, S&N CEO Allen Powell shares lessons learned on how to keep crews safe, during good times and bad.



“It has been almost a year since Tower 16, that provides construction management services for wireless companies and its sister company SCE, that provides professional services to the wireless industry, were purchased by S&N Communications. The acquisition has helped the two companies weather this year’s wireless industry slowdown and come out stronger and ready for an uptick in wireless capital expenditures in 2016.”



S&N welcomes Chris Smith, employee development manager, to the S&N team. Smith joins us with 20+ years of industry experience, including serving as corporate recruiter for Management Recruiters and also working as the human resources manager and director of professional development for the National Board for Certified Counselors. He also worked as the director of employer relations and assistant dean for professional development at Elon University.

S&N Communications has experienced rapid growth in the past few years and has recently been awarded a substantial fiber network project in Raleigh, Charlotte and Atlanta. Smith has been tasked with recruiting a large quantity of Directional Drill Crew Foremen, Drill Crew Operators, Drill Crew Laborers, Utility Locators and Underground Construction Foremen for that project and other new contracts.

Welcome, Chris! You’ve got your work cut out for you. 



What does the future hold for utility construction? S&N CEO Allen Powell answers that question in a feature article in this month’s issue of Damage Prevention Journal.

Per Powell, change is coming. With an ever-growing number of iPhones, tablets and broadband devices continuing to enter the homes and businesses of almost every American, the demand for high-speed fiber networks will only increase.

Utility construction companies that fail to make plans for the future will be left behind. Planning for the future should include an evolution of the current business model. For example, companies seeking to set themselves apart will be asked to play the role of both engineer and construction manager.

S&N Communications is early to the game, providing a one-stop shop for customers. The company continues to integrate project management and oversight for everything from initial project planning and site development to turnkey construction implementation, to post-construction maintenance, repair and locating services. From small-cell wireless networks to large scale fiber-optic-network builds, to erecting and maintaining cellular towers, S&N handles it all.

Are you planning for your company’s future? There’s no time like the present to start preparing for tomorrow. 



At S&N Communications, we believe that leaders can be found all along the corporate ladder. In the latest issue of Underground Construction, S&N Communications CEO and President Allen Powell shares his thoughts on “How To Encourage Leadership At All Levels.” 

Per Powell, an intern with a new idea can have just as much impact as that of senior manager. In order to encourage individuals within your company to emerge as leaders, Powell offers three tips: 

    1. Listen First, Act Later. Make sure everyone in your company feels confident that they have a voice and that it’s heard. Engage in two-way communication with your employees and ask for their opinions. Then, look to implement their suggestions while giving them public credit.

    1. Be Honest In Your Dealings With Others. In order to grow your business, a company must have the trust of others. Be as good as your word, and hold others to theirs.

    1. Give Away Your Power. If you’re seen as a leader, coach others. When you provide employees with the confidence and tools they need to develop, they’ll almost always step up to the plate. 



We’re proud to announce that Tower 16, a subsidiary of S&N Communications since 2014, has expanded into Illinois. The new office opened on June 25. As part of the launch, a temporary training tower was erected and all attending Tower 16 climbers were recertified in rescue certification. More than just your typical construction management company, Tower 16 provides experienced construction management personnel and expert installation technicians for turnkey solutions for wireless communication networks. In addition to the new Illinois office, Tower 16 is headquartered in Maryland and has a second office in Pennsylvania.



S&N was featured in the most recent edition of Underground Focus in an article titled “The Culture Quest.” A few of our favorite quotes:

“Is contract locating a good business to be in? Apparently so if you’re S&N Communications.”

“S&N had won their locators’ trust by being honest in its dealings with the customer and its employees.”

“When four locators, with a combined 35 years of experience spread out over six former employers, say there is something different about S&N, then they really are a different kind of locating company.”

Thanks to everyone at our company that keeps our culture thriving—we couldn’t have done it without you!



We take pride in not just getting the job done, but doing it better than anyone else. That means going the extra mile, at all times. It’s so nice to hear when our teams get recognized for their efforts.

“I’m a park ranger at Douthat State Park in Virginia. I recently had the opportunity to work with one of your crews who were installing underground conduit for fiber optic cable, throughout the park. They understood the conservation part of what I do as a park ranger. When these gentleman were done, in most parts of the park, if you didn’t know that they were there, you wouldn’t. The only way you could tell is if they had to plant grass and you could see the straw. I saw them move downed trees so they could get thru the right of way and then, they would put them back in their same place, and they would rake out the dozer tracks and put leaves back over them. There were a couple of mishaps, but none was their fault. One was mine, I missed a water-line locate, that they were happy enough to dig up for me to fix, and I was thankful for that. If not, I would have had to dig it by hand. I’ve never seen any crew do the things they have done. I want to thank Dewayne Scott’s crew for an outstanding job, and let them know it would be a privilege to work with them any time. I thought S&N should know what a crew they had working for them.

Timmy Puffenbarger”




We’ve come a long way in the underground utility locating industry. Check out our newest article by S&N Director of Utility Locating, Steve Roark, in the May 2015 issue of OSP Magazine and get his perspective about disaster prevention through advances in underground utility locating. Regulations have risen; technology progresses and we’re excited to keep evolving. 




Times are changing. Technology is advancing every day and the only way to keep up is to adapt, get involved and move fast. The latest advances in Internet speeds are coming to the Southeast and S&N Communications has been awarded the contract to bring these exciting improvements to some of the Southeast’s largest metropolitan areas – Raleigh, Charlotte and Atlanta. FTTH-“Fiber to the Home”-will bring new levels of speed, quality and bandwidth never before seen in businesses and at home.

The introduction of fiber optic cable directly to individual homes and businesses is going to make a big difference in how we gain our information. This “all-fiber” network is going to bring significantly faster Internet, crisper, cleaner, uninterrupted images and sound, an abundance of digital storage and wider access to television channels and other content sources. To give this some perspective, Fiber to the Home allows the viewer to download a 1080p movie in about a minute. It’s really that fast!

Currently, the more people who join an existing “fiber-coaxial-copper wire” network in these areas, the more the network slows down. However, with this new contract, S&N will provide a full strength fiber signal from the Internet backbone and bring it all the way down to individual homes and businesses without any dilution. Every home and business that signs up for this service will receive the exact same, extremely fast Internet speed — and that has never been available before in Raleigh, Charlotte or Atlanta.

When the opportunity for the advancement of technology was around the corner, we knew we had to be a part of it. S&N was awarded the contract and will be installing FTTH to these metropolitan areas in the upcoming months.

This is a huge job to take on, and we couldn’t be more excited about this opportunity. We’ve got this. Fiber, welcome to our homes!




We’re working hard to change perceptions for how underground utility locating is seen. Read the newest article by S&N CEO Allen Powell, published in the Spring 2015 issue of Damage Prevention Professional, pages 35-36. Powell writes about why it’s everyone’s job to elevate the status of our hardworking locating and utility construction employees.



This is our year of leadership, but safety is never forgotten. In fact, it’s a core factor in who we are and, already this year, we’ve seen some excellent work from our team members. Congratulations to our first quarter safety award winners. Thank you for all you do at S&N!

  • Jeremy Smith, Drill Foreman
  • John Baldwin, Site Superintendent BSW
  • Brett Nickerson, Site Superintendent
  • Michael Scales, Locate Technician



S&N Communications welcomes their first foray into Alabama. The renowned provider of locating, utilities and infrastructure construction services has signed a contract with an existing customer to do copper and fiber drops to homes and businesses across the state. 




Want to know the secrets behind being an industry leader? S&N Communications CEO and President Allen Powell tells all in the new issue of the Excavation Safety Guide & Directory (Issue No. 11). Read Allen’s article,”Taking ‘Best Practices’ To A New Level: 10 tips to be seen as an industry leader in damage prevention” then, let us hear your best tips for safety and damage prevention.



S&N closed out 2014 on a high note with a profile piece from Underground Construction senior editor Jeff Griffin on how the NC-based communications company adapted and grew to meet market needs. Read the full article.



S&N Locating Services, LLC and S&N Communications, Inc. (collectively “S&N”) achieved a major court victory over CertusView Technologies, LLC (“CertusView”), a wholly owned subsidiary of Dycom Industries, Inc. (NYSE:DY), in a ruling handed down on January 21, 2015.

CertusView filed the lawsuit against S&N in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia in May 2013. CertusView accused S&N of infringing on five separate patents held by CertusView pertaining to utility locate operations. From the suit’s commencement, S&N denied those allegations, and maintained that CertusView’s patents were invalid. In a 96-page opinion issued on January 21, 2015, a federal judge held that all of CertusView’s asserted patent claims were invalid as a matter of law. As a result of that ruling, CertusView’s infringement claims have been dismissed and judgment has been entered in favor of S&N.

S&N’s victory in this case represents good news for the locating industry, one call centers nationally and the safety of the general public. In the last several years, CertusView had obtained a large number of patents on what many thought were unpatentable locating-operating practices. This legal rejection by the federal district court vindicates that position.



It’s a new year, but our commitment to safety stays the same. We’re as dedicated as ever! Congratulations and thank you to the following 4th quarter Safety Award winners for helping S&N end 2014 on a high note.

  • Gary Sprouse, Aerial Foreman
  • James Keister, Safety Compliance
  • David Williams, Line Foreman
  • Ross Bloom, Site Superintendent BSW



As contractors, we should constantly ask the important questions: What are we doing right? In what areas might there be room for improvement?

In this OSP article, S&N President and CEO Allen Powell evaluates where the industry is improving and challenges yet to be overcome. 



Business View Magazine is a global leader in multi-platform business-to-business profiles, news and opinion. The magazine recently profiled S&N and why our “We’ve Got This” slogan rings true every time.



Texas 811 magazine’s fourth quarter publication featured the article “Pay Now or Pay Later: 5 Steps Facility Locating Services Can Take For Greater Damage Prevention.” The article, contributed by S&N CEO and President Allen Powell, outlined five simple steps utility companies can take to prevent damages and save money on the front end.

“Damage prevention comes down to a willingness to see beyond today to tomorrow,” notes Powell. “Even if your team is doing everything right, there are always things they can do better.” Powell discusses how inspections, training, community outreach and making safety a part of a corporate culture all pay for themselves in the long run.

For copies of the article, contact Chuck Baur at cbaur@sncomm.com. For future industry insights from S&N, subscribe to Damage Prevention Journal at www.damagepreventionjournal.com.



We may not be camera-ready for our close-up (we’ve still got dirt under our nails), but when the Winston-Salem Journal asked S&N’s CEO and president Allen Powell for some insight into S&N’s current expansions and future plans, well, we didn’t run from the spotlight.

“S&N Communications is serving as another local example of a company reaping the benefits of taking a calculated risk to expand through acquisition and/or innovation during a down economy…”



“I would like to express a sincere thank you to your crews who worked on getting this project turned up in record time. I know that we have S&N spread thin and that to pull in jobs can be trying on scheduling, so that is why I would like to commend you and your crews for the hard work and commitment that you continue to display to our company… your teams get an “at-a-boy” as this customer was turned up at midnight and can begin their operations today. A special shout out to Zack’s crew from the customer on cleanup. He was very impressed.”

– Lumos Network OSP Construction Supervisor Lynwood McLean”



For the second time in its 38-year history, the Virginia Cable Telecommunications Association (VCTA) inducted a member of an underground utility locating and construction company into its ranks. On November 11, 2014, S&N Communications president and CEO David Allen Powell was officially welcomed into the (VCTA) Hall of Fame.

“I’m deeply moved by the recognition VCTA has bestowed upon me,” said Powell. “Even though it’s my name on the plaque, this Hall of Fame induction is an honor I share with everyone I’ve had the good fortune to work with over the years.”

S&N is proud to be led by a man of such depth, integrity and hard-working ingenuity. Congratulations to our leader! You continue to make us proud.



S&N Communications is proud to have been awarded the 2014 Best of Roanoke Award in the Construction and Remodeling Contractors category. The Roanoke Award Program identifies companies that have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category. Rather than focusing exclusively on growth or sales, the award measures the quality of the services provided by the recipient. The award recipients are companies that enhance the positive image of small business through service to their customers and the community and help make the Roanoke area a great place to live, work and play.




S&N Communications’ CEO Allen Powell continues as a thought leader in the industry with a new article in the Fall 2014 issue of Damage Prevention Professional. The article covers what underground utility construction companies should be doing to save you time and money on the front and back end, as well as to provide the best service for customers.



S&N’s aggressive growth continues with the acquisition of Tower 16, Inc., a regional leader in wireless infrastructure construction and maintenance, and SCE, Inc. a regional leader in wireless infrastructure deployment and professional services. Headquartered in Maryland, both companies have been serving their regions for more than 15 years. These acquisitions—along with the earlier acquisition of Stake Center Locating—enable S&N to offer our broad suite of services to customers in an ever-expanding geographical footprint.

To our Maryland customers, just a reminder—we’ve got this. Now let’s get to work.



“I’m writing to let you know I am very pleased with the quality of service your company… provided on our D2L work orders. James and Ray are very knowledgeable of our product and seem genuinely interested in helping not only us, but our customers. Their responsiveness and the way they care for our facility is sincerely appreciated. In our business, we must get repairs completed on an acceptable schedule. We rely on dependable service from our contractors like you to help us keep these scheduled commitments and satisfy our customers. Because of their efforts, I’m very satisfied, and so are our customers. I have recommended your company to others because of our genuine pleasure with your service. You have put together a great team that makes us and our customers feel respected and valued.

Thank you for your contribution to the industry. I look forward to continuing our business relationship.”

Zackery Gravely
Asset Protection Specialist
VNG – Asset Protection



As innovators and leaders, S&N isn’t known for playing it safe. Unless we’re talking safety, in which case we ALWAYS play it safe.

Congratulations and thumbs up to our second quarter safety award winners: Local Managers

  • Oscar Navarrete
  • Wayne Summers

Buried Foremen and Foremen

  • Oscar Monterrosa Paz
  • Norman Chambers
  • David Brown


  • Jacob Harris
  • Vince Sola
  • Alex Brown

Regional Operations Manager – Construction

  • Brian Sink



S&N President and CEO Allen Powell is making waves with his new article, Digging Deep: The Secrets Behind Successful Fiber-Optic Project Management, now available online at lIghtwaveonline.com. Fiber-optic construction companies want your business and, unless it’s their first rodeo, they know the answers you want to hear. Click here to learn the seven steps every municipality should use to pre-qualify a fiber-optics company (beyond just price) to ensure maximum effectiveness and cost savings.




S&N Communications continues to expand, strengthen and focus our management as we move into the next stage of our evolution.

  • George L. Baer who has been both chief financial officer (CFO) and chief operating officer (COO) will now concentrate 100 percent of his efforts as COO.
  • Debbie Scott who has been our director of finance and chief information officer (CIO) will now concentrate on our systems technology side as CIO and will also assist with integration of acquisitions as vice president of mergers and acquisitions transitions.
  • Ron Smith has been hired as CFO. Ron comes to S&N with more than 20 years experience in multiple strategic and financial leadership roles.

Congratulations to George and Debbie on their new positions, and welcome, Ron. This is an exciting time for our company.



Safety first isn’t a motto at S&N—it’s our mission. Which is why we recognize employees who go above and beyond in their efforts to extend safety in the workplace. This month we applaud:

  • Jamie Avelar, buried foreman, and James Clark, buried D2L foreman, for their exceptional safety records during first quarter 2014.
  • Billy Salyer, Bill Weaver, Jamie Hicks, Reggie Hoback and Brian Sink as the recipients of the 1st quarter safety award for S&N’s new “Destination Zero” safety campaign.
  • Brian Bevins, our first quarter 2014 Safety awardee.

“All of these gentleman lead by example when it comes to putting safety first,” says Sean Davis, regional manager, construction, S&N Communications. “It’s because of workers like this that S&N has become synonymous with ‘safety’ in the industry.”



We’ve said it before. We don’t sit around and wait for things to happen. Stake Center Locating has been awarded a long-term nationwide contract from Crown Castle. Crown Castle provides communication services to customers in eight states throughout the United States. S&N Communications was able to provide the means and assistance for Stake Center to earn the work from this – their third-nationwide company.



S&N Communications was recently awarded a major contract for fiber optic work in West Virginia and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. This represents our first significant expansion into the two states. How did we get it? A current customer who had experienced our work in nearby states awarded us the job. It goes to show, if you do the job right, you’ll grow organically. The new opportunity means our company will be a major provider for locating and construction in these territories for years to come.



You may have noticed we don’t sit around waiting for things to happen. That’s why, when we saw the opportunity to acquire Utah-based Stake Center Locating and blend the talents of our two companies, we didn’t hesitate. With this acquisition, S&N Communications will be able to offer locating services nationwide. We like to think of it as the coming together of two perfect teams, a tsunami of talent swirling together to create a new nationwide synergy for our company and our clients.




On February 22, 2013 S&N Communications, Inc. was awarded a multiple-year Rappahannock Electric Cooperative locate contract in Virginia.




On May 15, 2013 S&N Communications, Inc. was awarded a multiple-year Dominion Virginia Power locate contract in Virginia.




Kudos for a Services Supplier. S&N Communications continues to powerfully represent their own company, and Verizon as their customer, through incredibly high success with damage prevention efforts. The Virginia State Corporation Commission recognizes S&N’s leadership role in this effort, and has asked Allen Powell to speak as a Subject-Matter Expert at their annual conference. This is further justification that Verizon made the correct and necessary decision to engage S&N Communications as the Single-Source Provider for Outside Plant Services in Virginia.



Billy Arnold and the crew who came to install a new gas line on my property were exceptionally considerate and professional. It’s quite a surprise when a crew arrives to dig up your yard and garden. But, everyone was highly proficient and did a great job. 

What made the experience even better is that they saw how panicked I was having a group of people in my yard. Billy listened as I explained that I was just returning from a business trip in France, and most of my garden was freshly planted. The team was conscious of my anxiety and carefully worked around my plants. It was so kind of them to be so considerate.

S&N Communications Inc.
P.O. Box 769 Kernersville, NC 27285
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