To recognize the contributions of the pioneers of the consumer electronics industry, CEA announced the first 50 inductees into its Consumer Electronics Hall of Fame at the 2000 International CES. Each year a new group of inventors, engineers, business leaders, retailers and journalists are inducted into the CE Hall of Fame.
The CE Hall of Fame is an opportunity to honor the visionaries who have paved the way for the products and services that are changing the way we live. Individually, and in some cases together, these leaders have made significant contributions to the industry. Without them, the world would be a very different place.
The 2015 CE Hall of Fame Dinner was be held at Gotham Hall in New York on November 9 in conjunction with CEA Innovate.
The Following were inducted in the The CE Hall of Fame 2015 Class:
Bob Borchardt President and CEO, Recoton
Accessories have traditionally been viewed as the side dish or even an afterthought to major big-ticket consumer electronics products – the metaphorical fries to the burgers, the potatoes to the steak and the croutons to the salad. But as president and CEO of Recoton, Bob Borchardt helped elevate accessories to a genuine and necessary profit center for retailers. He also managed to grow his own company’s revenue from $3 million to just under $1 billion, establishing Recoton as a global leader in the CE industry.
George Feldstein Founder and CEO, Crestron
Home control via smartphones and tablets has become all the rage. But the idea of the modern connected home with integrated system controls for audio and video distribution, lighting, HVAC, home theater systems, intercom and video security was first conceived and brought to market by the fertile imagination of George Feldstein through the company he founded above a New Jersey delicatessen called Crestron.
Noel Lee Founder, President & CEO, Monster Inc.
Noel Lee was born on Christmas Day in 1948 and has played Santa for thousands of electronics retailers by revolutionizing, if not outright inventing, the high-end accessory business and vastly increasing their revenue stream and profits. Via his establishment of the high-end audio then high-end video interconnection market, as well as the introduction of the Beats headphone line, the self-described “Head Monster” has been arguably the industry’s most enthusiastic proselytizer for improving consumers’ audio and video enjoyment.
Wilfred Schwartz Founder, Chairman of Federated Group
To say Wilfred Schwartz was a retail visionary is an understatement. In 1970, Schwartz founded the Federated Group, and opened the first deep discount consumer electronics (CE) superstore in the nation. Starting with one store, Schwartz grew Federated to 67 outlets all over the Southwest, becoming the most dominant CE retailer by establishing a new retail model.
Tom Campbell Technologist, CE evangelist, retail executive
Successfully selling stereo equipment requires not only a Midas touch and a golden ear, but also a silver tongue, and Tom Campbell is imbued with all three. Starting out as the motor mouth for Cal Stereo’s radio ads in the 1970s, Campbell became a leading retail executive, technologist and industry evangelist, helping a series of consumer electronics (CE) retailers grow to unprecedented success.
Vic Hayes Father of Wi-Fi
No one “invented” Wi-Fi. But as founding chairman of the IEEE 802.11 Working Group for Wireless LANs, Hayes led the decade-long effort to tame the wild west of incompatible and competing wireless protocols by shepherding spectrum allocation issues to establish the Wi-Fi standard, earning him the sobriquet of “Father of Wi-Fi.”
Bernie Mitchell First Marketing Director and President, Pioneer Electronics of America
“Uncle Bernie” was how his employees referred to Bernie Mitchell, the first president of the U.S. division of Pioneer Electronics of America. Not only was Mitchell a beloved executive who would invite everyone in the company – office-workers, warehousemen, repairmen – to his home for a party, but also helped grow his company grow 100 fold in just a decade, establishing Pioneer’s formidable presence in the U.S. market.
Dr. Floyd Toole Pioneering Acoustic Researcher and Engineer
What constitutes “good” sound? Pioneering psychoacoustic scientist Dr. Floyd Toole was able to identify the technical loudspeaker measurements correlating with what listeners identified as “good” sound in double-blind testing. As a result of his work, many speaker makers changed how they designed their wares, and his measurement methods have been codified into an industry standard.
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