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Leif Madsen Sheridan College telecommunications

Creativity, innovation, curiosity and a strong work ethic – these are qualities that Leif Madsen possesses in spades, and they came to the fore while he was studying telecommunications technology at Sheridan. It was there that he was introduced to Asterisk, the world’s most widely used open-source communications software.

At the time, Asterisk was still in its infancy, but Leif was instantly smitten, spending all day in the computer lab getting to know every aspect of this new toy.

“The software was changing on an hourly basis, and I saw an opportunity to collaborate and contribute something meaningful to the online community,” he says.

By connecting with Mark Spencer, the computer engineer who invented Asterisk, Leif made his mark by coauthoring the first-ever manual on the software in 2005. Today, that publication is in its fourth edition, and Leif is globally recognized as the go-to guy for Asterisk.

Developers worldwide use the software to build communication applications, such as call centres, voicemail systems, and teleconferencing servers — all of which are cornerstones of the new economy. More than 80,000 people in 170 countries have experienced the power of Asterisk.

“The software was changing on an hourly basis, and I saw an opportunity to collaborate and contribute something meaningful to the online community” – Leif Madsen

As a consultant, Leif has led many technology companies through Asterisk implementations. He seems to have a flair for making the process as seamless as possible.

“Leif had an innate ability to explain Asterisk and telecommunications systems in a way that I not only understood, but allowed me to help build a complex phone system,” says Dustin Kozak, a former client of Leif’s at Ameriforce, a leading U.S.-based recruitment firm.

Leif continues his work improving human connectivity in his latest position as a Unified Communications Systems engineer for Thinking Phone Networks, a cloud computing leader based in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Pictured above: Leif Madsen, Sheridan Telecommunications Technology alumnus

Written by: Christine Szustaczek, Director of Communications and External Relations at Sheridan.


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