The Nine 2020: Joe Dunbar

Joe Dunbar, Diversified
Joe Dunbar (Image credit: Joe Dunbar)

Name: Joe Dunbar

Title: Senior Account Executive

Company: Diversified

Twitter: @JoeDinAV

Location: Minneapolis, MN

Overtime: Like many #AVTweeps, music is at the core of Dunbar’s soul; he is always writing, performing, recording, mixing, tweaking, and experimenting. He also enjoys photography/videography, and has a passion for motorcycles.

Why You Need to Know Him: Joe Dunbar’s skill set is a rare blend of technical and interpersonal. In his current role, Dunbar, 33, focuses on the big picture while developing strategic and long-term relationships in the pro AV industry. While creating those relationships, he can get into the nitty-gritty of the clients’ needs … or discuss the latest trends in a way that non-technical staff can easily digest.

“While I do still work on individual projects, they’re usually part of a larger scale that allows me to directly support and influence how companies improve their situations for their teams and their customers,” he said. “I really love the far-reaching implications of this. My favorite aspect is the challenge of keeping an eye on details while not losing perspective of the entire scope.”

Geeking Out: Dunbar got his start in AV as a teenager working retail sales at Best Buy and moved to the Geek Squad in his late teens. “Sales is encoded into my personality,” he said, “but I also love to work with my hands, so when an opportunity to join the installation team came up, I jumped at it.”

Because of insurance regulations, he couldn’t join the team on installs until he turned 18. When his birthday rolled around, he was elated to start on-site work. “In the beginning, I just thought it was so cool that I got to build out home theaters for a job! I didn’t realize it was the first door I would walk through of an industry that just keeps growing.”

Once Dunbar had some real-world install experience, he got his ISF certification and spent most of his time calibrating displays before moving into a leadership role, followed by a focus on special projects.

The Move to Pro: Dunbar began his career in commercial AV touring as a front-of-house engineer. He then dove into the pro AV space with work at the now-defunct installation firm EnterTechAVL. From there, he moved to Wyrestorm, spending two and a half years as U.S channel manager. After a brief time working at Starin Marketing, Dunbar found his way back to installation and recently started at Diversified, number two on the 2019 SCN Top 50.

Now that he is settled comfortably back in the world of installation, Dunbar is looking to get more involved with the pro AV industry and seeking volunteer opportunities—particularly in the area of mentoring. “I am grateful to have had mentors in my life who have helped me learn how to work through [various] situations from a position of sincerity and a genuine interest to help others. I’m also finding myself entering a time in my life when I can start to provide that type of support and perspective for the younger people in our industry. I look forward to those opportunities.”

Get to know the rest of The Nine. 

Learn more about Joe on this episode of AVNation.

Megan A. Dutta

Megan A. Dutta is a pro AV industry journalist, and the former content director for Systems Contractor News (SCN) and Digital Signage Magazine, both Future U.S. publications. Dutta previously served as the marketing communications manager at Peerless-AV, where she led the company’s marketing and communications department. Dutta is the recipient of AVIXA's 2017 Young AV Professional Award and Women in Consumer Technology's 2018 Woman to Watch Award. Dutta is co-founder of Women of Digital Signage, an organization designed to provide a pathway to promote networking, mentoring, and personal growth.