IN MEMORIAM | Remembering Terrence Walsh, former Tempo Lighting executive

May 19, 2023
Former Tempo Industries president and CEO and longtime solid-state lighting advocate Terrence Walsh passed away recently after a brief illness.

Introduction by Carrie Meadows -  With announcement from Tempo Industries

LEDs Magazine has learned that longtime lighting industry executive and SSL and sustainability advocate Terrence Walsh passed away on May 13, 2023, after a brief illness.

Terrence "Terry" Walsh (19462023) engaged with the lighting industry on a regular basis during his nearly 50-year career, speaking and writing on key topics in lighting product development, business, and the intersection of renewable technology. Back in 2011, Walsh urged naysayers to look past early disappointments in LED-based SSL and to consider the opportunities unfolding for the integration of LEDs combined with granular control systems, refined optical quality, and more robust materials, eventually supplanting conventional light source technologies and enabling more agile application. (Editor's note: Sadly, LEDs lacks the full archived version of this column and so it is not linked here.)

Between 2012 and 2014, Walsh was dynamic in conveying the greater advantages of LED lighting for designers, and especially when paired with renewable energy sources. At The LED Show in 2012, he closed out the conference program with designer Chip Israel, exploring the future of lighting. During the discussion, Walsh revealed that he often told lighting designers, “If you spend any time working on fluorescent, HID, mercury vapor, or other legacy sources, all you are doing is reorganizing the deck chairs on the Titanic.” He urged a change in mindset toward lighting as a purpose-built appliance of value rather than a disposable commodity.

In speaking with former chief editor Maury Wright, Walsh said that "LED lighting technology [is] symbiotic and enabling when used with other ‘clean tech’ technologies" since its efficiency pairs well with solar energy sources." He indicated that major gains would be made when buildings began to rely upon localized renewable energy sources connected to a DC grid and smart control systems in leveraging the lower energy demands of LEDs.

Below is the announcement from Tempo Industries. Carrie Meadows


(Irvine, CA – May 18, 2023) – Solid State Lighting & sustainability advocate and former Tempo Industries President & CEO Terrence Walsh passed away Saturday, May 13, 2023, after a brief illness.

Terrence had nearly 50 years of significant involvement in the lighting industry. Walsh had held Board seats with many companies, secured four U.S. patents, authored numerous lighting articles, and was a frequent speaker at IES, DOE workshops, LED conferences and industry-related trade shows that focused on the development and adoption of LED technology as a key foundation to achieving material energy savings with viably sustainable products. He will be missed by many.

Walsh began his career with Prescolite, then a US Industries Company (NYSE: USI), and was directly involved for a decade with USI’s strategy that resulted in one of the first successful lighting conglomerates. Subsequently, he was the first President of Zumtobel and kickstarted their U.S. presence. He also worked with JJI Lighting Group and founded Integrated Lighting Industries in 1989. In 1991, he purchased Tivoli Industries, that he grew in part by driving patent-garnering innovation in cinema auditorium lighting that is still considered by many to be the best available today. In three years he was able to take Tivoli public. Concurrently, he created a joint venture with Targetti Sankey S.p.A., resulting in their US market entry and in 1999 oversaw the successful sale of Tivoli to the Italian firm. In 2000, Terrence became an Executive Director of a New York-based investment banking and asset management firm and was critically involved in a number of acquisitions, including the successful sale of Teka to B-K Lighting in 2005.

Walsh joined Tempo Lighting in 2006 as a Principal assisting in the development of multiple award-winning LED lighting solutions. His innovation effort focused on LED adoption into architectural and cove lighting applications. Walsh was an early and vocal advocate of LED technology who recognized its potential to revolutionize the lighting industry. Walsh eventually became President and CEO of Tempo where he led the company until his retirement in 2022.

Terrence was also a distinguished veteran of the U.S. Army as an officer and completed multiple combat tours in Vietnam. Terrence, known as "Terry" by his close friends and associates, was also a proud graduate of Rutgers University in Physics and had a lifelong passion for astronomy, photography and New York Yankees baseball. He is survived by his wife Marilyn Walsh of 45 years.

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About the Author

Carrie Meadows | Editor-in-Chief, LEDs Magazine

Carrie Meadows has more than 20 years of experience in the publishing and media industry. She worked with the PennWell Technology Group for more than 17 years, having been part of the editorial staff at Solid State Technology, Microlithography World, Lightwave, Portable Design, CleanRooms, Laser Focus World, and Vision Systems Design before the group was acquired by current parent company Endeavor Business Media.

Meadows has received finalist recognition for LEDs Magazine in the FOLIO Eddie Awards, and has volunteered as a judge on several B2B editorial awards committees. She received a BA in English literature from Saint Anselm College, and earned thesis honors in the college's Geisel Library. Without the patience to sit down and write a book of her own, she has gladly undertaken the role of editor for the writings of friends and family.

Meadows enjoys living in the beautiful but sometimes unpredictable four seasons of the New England region, volunteering with an animal shelter, reading (of course), and walking with friends and extended "dog family" in her spare time.