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Meet Our Experts

Jason Palidwar; Product Group Manager, Aerospace and Specialty Optics / Marketing Manager; Iridian Spectral Technologies, Canada

At Iridian, Jason Palidwar holds two important roles. Firstly, as the Product Group Manager, he collaborates with clients who require optical filters for applications such as satcom, earth observation, astronomy, 3D entertainment, and remote sensing. Jason dedicates his efforts to defining, selling, and supporting our optical filter solutions, working closely with our engineering and operations teams to ensure the technical requirements are met to design the best solution that balances the needs of the customer with what they want. The most exciting part of his job is creating solutions that have a positive impact on the world and people's daily lives. Jason expresses, “The opportunity to design filter solutions that will be used in space to deliver global communications, images, and data that allow our customers’ customers to manage problems such as the environment/agriculture/forestry/disaster response is very exciting.” 

Additionally, Jason serves as the Marketing Manager for Iridian. He is responsible for leading marketing activities and delivering effective campaigns to demonstrate how our filters can deliver "more signal, with less background" to our customers' applications. Regardless of his position, Jason believes that “You are only a leader if people are inspired to follow your lead.”  He empowers decision-making and shares the value of the work his team does. 

When asked about what he loves most about his job, Jason shares, “The breadth of applications our filters support means I am always learning new technologies and involved in creating new processes to address these varied functional needs. I relish the opportunity to learn and then share my new knowledge.” 

Outside of work, Jason enjoys golfing, playing "old man hockey," and reading. He cherishes spending time with his wife, who is a hardworking cardiac ICU RN, and his daughter, who is studying law. They love watching shows together on Netflix, traveling, and going on forest walks with their big brown dog.

Sandy Van Hart, Principal Engineer, CVI Laser Optics, LLC, Albuquerque

Sandy Van Hart, a Principal Engineer at CVI Laser Optics is inspired by new challenges presented by customers, which keeps Sandy: “on my toes and invigorates my desire to take a dive into the unknown.” Sandy is a Mechanical Engineer who has many facets to his position from working with the manufacturing team to improve efficiency through better tools and processes to helping our metrology and assembly departments overcome obstacles and find brilliant solutions.

Another important aspect of his job is collaborating with customers on their application design and providing a unique engineering perspective which opens up new possibilities for innovation.  Often our customers’ optical prototype systems are unnecessarily complex. Sandy provides refinements to simplify the overall design and even re-imagine them to create more robust, higher performance, and manufacturable systems.

When asked what he loves most about his job he replied: “CVI offers such a wide diversity of disciplines and people so it always remains interesting as well as adaptive. There are significant opportunities to learn new and exciting things.”

Cody Feltman, Assembly Technician, CVI Laser Optics

Cody Feltman chose to work at CVI Laser Optics partially due to the Global footprint of IDEX Corporation. Being part of a larger company provides “so many cool opportunities and challenging industries to participate in.”  Cody previously worked in the space/satellite solar panel industry and was inspired to “continue working with optics and mechanisms that control light and all the interesting things that can be produced from that.” 

Cody’s daily responsibilities include assembling and testing optical components to ensure they meet mechanical and spectral specifications. Inspecting optical surface quality is one important aspect of his position which verifies there is no distortion or obstruction of the laser beam passing through. Manufacturing and testing optical assemblies to meet or exceed performance levels with tight tolerances and custom specifications is one of the daily challenges. “We overcome these challenges by having strong and constant communication with engineering to adjust any processes necessary to address issues quickly.” Cody is inspired by how astounded customers are and the positive feedback received after providing high performance optical solutions that exceed their expectations. 

When asked what he loves about his job Cody replied: “I love the cohesiveness between production and engineering and all the challenges that can be solved by putting our minds together.” Cody always encourages his coworkers to be transparent and speak up on processes that could be improved or problems that need to be solved. He supports individual team members to grow and be there to answer any questions they have. When Cody is not at work, he is enjoying everything outdoors from snowboarding to camping in the mountains and hiking.

Justin Hubert, Director of Sales, North America, CVI Laser Optics

Justin Hubert is our Director of Sales for our New Mexico and New York facilities.  He is responsible for leading the efforts for our Applications Engineering, Customer Service, and Sales Teams.

Justin takes pride in contributing to the brilliant solutions that influence the world today. One of the core markets we support here at IDEX Optical Technologies is the Semiconductor Inspection and Metrology Industry. Justin comments on this market and how we make a positive impact: “Our optics play a key role in quality control and inspection for semiconductor chips that are at the heart of all electronic equipment and devices that people use daily around the globe.”

Justin and his teams maintain a high-level of intimacy with our customers from the initial application design, R&D, through production and assembly, creating a trusted partnership. “Our strategy is simple, meet our customers where they want to be.” His team is often met with challenges to support future developments in optical technology, and improve our position as industry leaders in optical design and manufacturing. Justin’s leadership style is to be transparent, promote collaboration, and support employees to develop brilliant solutions. Justin explains: “I focus daily on the roadblocks that many of my team members might have, and how I can help remove them.”

He is inspired daily by the collective effort to find creative ways to support our customers in this ever-changing world. “Our customers push us to be our best, and our team is always ready to perform. My favorite aspect about my role currently is our cross-departmental collaboration. I have been fortunate to be a part of many great teams in the past, but I have never been a part of one this exceptional! Our organization takes customer obsession to the next level.”

When Justin is off work and isn’t helping his team solve customer challenges, he enjoys playing golf and coaching his sons’ sporting activities.

Greg Rodgers, Sr. Market Manager, IDEX Optical Technologies

As Sr. Market Manager for IDEX Optical Technologies, Greg researches and analyzes key market trends to help focus the company on future technologies and opportunities. As a leader, Greg works collaboratively  with his dedicated teams to provide solutions to key strategic goals. 

Greg was drawn to IDEX Optical Technologies due to the opportunities of a growing, high-tech company with a ‘go get it attitude’ that focuses on technology impacting the world for years to come. Using that innovation to develop new ideas and solve problems moves the technological needle for datacom, healthcare, semiconductors, and related fields. Greg stated: “As we’re all techies at heart, solving those problems will likely provide that next big innovation or breakthrough that impacts lives for the better. And the tech created is typically cool!”

Greg is inspired because: “I get to look into the future of what could be and how we might make a difference. Also, it is fun and exciting to see what the roadblocks are and then develop strategies and paths to a brilliant solution. Ultimately, that path will lead to improving a life or even better lives. When I look back on my legacy and say, hey what did I do to help? I can say the work we did and are doing, is helping many and in so many different ways.” He is proud to work at IDEX Optical Technologies because of the amazing things that touch everyday lives through the use of semiconductors, high speed internet, and the people receiving healthcare each day. “It’s awesome to know that our intellect and products make those things possible.” 

Balancing his responsibilities to the company and his family takes discipline. As a remote worker, it is easy to work long hours, the work is always there, but Greg controls work/life balance through self-discipline so he has quality time to focus on his family and life too. 

Jorge A. Arellano, Quality Control Technician, CVI Laser Optics

Jorge A Arellano was born in Texas, lived in California for a time and then moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico. Jorge is a quality control specialist responsible for cleaning optics and assuring they meet or exceed quality control guidelines for CVI Laser Optics, a business unit of IDEX Optical Technologies. He chose this company because IDEX Optical Technologies is the leading manufacturer of custom optics and is inspired by the clean-room processes and work environment. When asked what he loves most about his job, he answered, “I love working in a fast-paced environment, it keeps the days interesting. I’ve learned so much about the science behind optics and photonics and the manipulation of light, it’s really fascinating." His advice for anyone wanting to participate in this career is to be open to learning new things. Attention to detail and a clean work area are key components of Jorge’s work process. When he is not working hard at CVI laser Optics, he is either playing in his band, training for boxing, or playing a lot of video games.

Chris Stone, Facilities & Safety Manager, CVI Laser Optics

Chris, originally from Santa Cruz, California currently lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico and is the Facilities and Safety Manager at CVI Laser Optics. His daily responsibilities include managing the maintenance of equipment, facilities, and safety protocols  for a safe working environment for all employees. When asked: “What inspired you to get into this field of work?” Chris responded: “The science of optics and thin film coatings is fascinating.” He loves working with all the people at this facility and being part of the solutions we provide our customers every day. Chris: “The people that work here are a great group focused on teamwork and customer obsession.” He chose to work for IDEX because of the location and the ability to run his department like a small business while maintaining corporate support. His advice to anyone wanting to be in this career is: “Networking is a key skill to maintain a facility.  Optics manufacturing is very technical, but many online resources exist to understand key theories.  Do your homework!” One of the challenges Chris faces on his job is managing inventory and spare parts to maintain proper lead times -- “keeping the right parts on hand is crucial to success. Logical outside the box thinking can help solve problems quickly.” In Chris’ free time he builds motorcycles and cars.

Julia Craven, Director of Engineering for IDEX Optical Technologies’ CVI Laser Optics unit

As Director of Engineering for IDEX Optical Technologies’ CVI Laser Optics unit, Julia helps customers by seeking to understand the underlying needs and motivations behind a specific problem. As Julia explains, “this usually requires me to challenge whether I am looking at the problem with the best perspective, or if I need to view it from a different direction to enable the best solution. We begin every project with a collaborative process that creates a detailed definition of a particular problem or issue, as well as the key requirements, and specifications. This sets everyone up for success.” Solving complex issues for customers is inspiring and energizing to Julia because it provides her an opportunity to directly contribute to the team’s success while establishing a trusting partnership with the key stakeholders. “It is a natural motivator to bring our best solution forward. And having a close partnership with our customers also inspires us to innovate new capabilities to further their success and meet their needs” says Julia.

What Julia loves most about her job are the people and culture of the organization. CVI is an execution focused business that is small enough where everyone knows each other and always takes a moment to say “hi, how are you?” Although Julia’s primary responsibility is supporting her engineering team’s success, she also provides hands-on support to the CVI metrology department. Julia’s leadership style is inspired by several leaders she has worked with in the past, especially those which demonstrated enthusiasm and positivity for diversity, equity and inclusion, and courage to tackle challenges by putting forth the extra effort needed to solve problems.

Floriane Teofanescu, Product Manager, IDEX Optical Technologies B.V. 

Floriane, “Flo” has been with IDEX for 12 years and is located in France. Flo develops strategies for our European sites in addition to managing a team of application engineers. This team works to translate customer requirements into specifications for our engineering and operation departments. Flo and her team keep a constant technological watch on our key markets to identify tomorrow’s problems and understand future challenges to come. Our teams are ready to partner with you and bring solutions to new project innovations.  

Flo’s inspiration to help customers is exceptional: “Our customers are developing innovations in critical markets, and face challenges that significantly impact future technologies. By helping them address these challenges we are helping shape the future of IDEX Optical Technologies.” She and her team approach customer obsession and problem solving using a 5-step process; 1) Learn about the customer, 2) Understand the application, 3) Solve the technical challenges, 4) Integrate our technology into their application, and 5) Deliver a tailored solution.

When asked what she loves most about her job she replied: “I never get bored! There is always something new to learn, areas to improve, challenges to take on as I grow with the company.” When Flo is not at work creating brilliant solutions, she is enjoying family time with her husband and four kids, as well as raising farm animals and Bucovina shepherd dogs.

Diana Magana, R&D Optical Engineer, IDEX Optical Technologies’ CVI Laser Optics unit

As one of our R&D Optical Engineers located in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Diana’s key capabilities and responsibilities are to assist with production procedures, and design custom metrology processes for measuring specifications and performance of optical assemblies and new product innovations. She also designs optical systems, performs precision alignments for optical assemblies, and uses the latest metrology capabilities to confirm maximum application performance levels are being met.

Through Diana’s optimized engineering designs, she can extend the wavelength range of optical systems, resulting in increased possibilities for our customers’ innovations. Diana approaches each challenge by finding several solutions to a problem and creating a cost analysis based on design specifications. This process provides multiple starting points and helps optimize the best solution that will save the customer money while still meeting or exceeding their system requirements.

When asked what inspires her to help customers she replied: “To deliver a product that I am proud to present to the customer and knowing that it will meet or exceed their expectations.” Working alongside dedicated coworkers that take pride in their work is what Diana loves most about her job. When she is not at the office engineering brilliant solutions for our customers, she is out hiking in the diverse New Mexico landscapes.