The National Association of Innovative Lighting Distributors (NAILD) has named six young industry leaders as its 2017 “Forces Under 40”:
• Ira Greenberg, CEO of Keystone Technologies in North Wales, Pennsylvania, has overseen the emergence of Keystone Technologies as a leading competitor among lighting component manufacturers. His accomplishments include increasing sales more than 50-fold, expanding the catalog from a few dozen SKUs to more than 1,000, expanding product presence from one warehouse to 27 across North America and winning multiple awards for outstanding products from NAILD and EC&M Magazine. He founded The Fertility Fund, is a member of Wharton Executive MBA Investment Club and the Young Presidents Organization and serves on the board of directors of the Jewish Family and Children’s Services of Greater Philadelphia.
• Matt John, chief strategy officer and executive vice president at Elemental LED in Emeryville, California, was the driving force in the development of Elemental LEDs patented products. He led the creation and development of key product innovations, including ClickTight Pro and SWITCHEX. He has conducted speaking engagements at many of the top electrical distributors in the nation and has been a member of panel discussions at many industry conferences. He co-founded Elemental LED and the product brand, Diode LED, in 2008. He is helping to bring the company’s final-mile production and assembly back to the United States and providing jobs in California. He enjoys participating in Alameda County Community Food Bank drives, the Holiday “Warm Coat” Drive and charity runs.
• Cory Schneider, CEO of Lighting Unlimited in Scottsdale, Arizona, held every job in the company before taking over the responsibility of leading the four-store distributorship. He helped the company triple sales over the past three years, instituted a training program and started an outside sales team. He has served as chairman of the Education Committee for NAILD, as well as a NAILD board member. He helped raise more than $150,000 for Habitat for Humanity. Additionally, he is a member of Entrepreneurs Organization, a local organization that brings business leaders together to work and learn.
• Guillaume Vidal, co-CEO of Green Creative in San Bruno, California, is a product development guru who has created many award-winning lighting products in the market. He has served as speaker on the Chinese supplier side at trade shows and panelist at multiple entrepreneurial events. He developed a company from nothing into a leader in the industry producing $40 million per year in sales. He also created a team in Shanghai to manufacture a product line and is active in volunteer programs in Shanghai working with migrant workers’ children.
• Kevin Wolf, national distribution sales manager at Jesco Lighting in Windham, New Hampshire, has led the company into a new level of distribution by training personnel and developing customer relationships. He is a consistent sales leader, managing both local territories and a national platform. He is motivated and focused on growth and has excellent leadership skills and product knowledge. He has provided lectures at the Roger Williams Chapter International Association of Electrical Inspectors and serves as head coach of Portsmouth Pop Warner.
• Cole Zucker, co-CEO of Green Creative in San Bruno, California, has brought innovation to the lighting industry and is a strong partner in the traditional distribution channel. He has given several speeches, including keynotes. His company is one of the top 100 fastest growing companies in the Bay area. He has received numerous IES awards and volunteers as a Big Brother. Zucker helped build a company from the ground up and he is always supporting and developing exceptional partnerships within distribution.