LightingEurope changes leadership, assumes SSL-erate mantle

April 11, 2017
Ourania Georgoutsakou has taken over the LightingEurope secretary general position from Diederik de Stoppelaar. Meanwhile, the organization has pledged to continue to make available the work of the SSL-erate program as the three-year initiative ends.

Ourania Georgoutsakou has taken over the LightingEurope secretary general position from Diederik de Stoppelaar. Meanwhile, the organization has pledged to continue to make available the work of the SSL-erate program as the three-year initiative ends.

On Apr. 1, 2017, Ourania Georgoutsakou assumed the position of secretary general for LightingEurope, taking over for Diederik de Stoppelaar who saw what was planned to be a short-term stint at the helm extend to two and a half years. Georgoutsakou arrives from a leadership position at SEMI (Semiconductor Equipment and Materials International), the global industry organization that focuses on the supply chain in the broad semiconductor industry. Meanwhile, the SSL-erate program, funded in part by the European Commission (EC) to accelerate the uptake of solid-state lighting (SSL) and sustainable business practices, has ended its planned three-year run, but LightingEurope will continue to make work created by the SSL-erate partners available for access.

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LightingEurope secretary general

For the past several years, de Stoppelaar has been a very public and impactful force in the European, and indeed global, lighting community. He became interim secretary general Sept. 1, 2014 and stepped into the full-time role that November. LightingEurope was only two years old at the time, and de Stoppelaar helped shape the future of the organization that represents lighting manufacturers and industry organizations from specific countries, and that has heavily influenced European Union regulatory policy and the early adoption of applications such as human-centric lighting (HCL) in Europe. For instance, de Stoppelaar and LightingEurope led the fight convincing the EC to delay the phasing of a halogen lamp ban.

Asked about the change in leadership, de Stoppelaar said he had largely finished what he and the executive board had prioritized, and that he planned to retire to his home in den Haag from where he will pursue some consulting projects and board activities. Among the key achievements in LightingEurope, de Stoppelaar noted:

  • The LightingEurope office is now again a functioning unit with processes in place and a highly motivated and capable team on board
  • The financial situation of the association has been turned around and LightingEurope is healthy again
  • The Strategic Roadmap 2025 for the European Lighting Industry has been developed/published and is in implementation mode with new working groups and their agendas in operation
  • The visibility of LightingEurope in the lighting market and its impact to the Brussels arena has improved considerably

Surely, though, the organization will be in capable hands with Georgoutsakou coming aboard. “As my successor, I cordially welcome Ourania Georgoutsakou,” said de Stoppelaar. “Ourania joins us with a remarkable experience from SEMI, the global trade association representing the manufacturing supply chain for the semiconductor and related industries and from the Assembly of European Regions. This background from an adjacent industry to lighting and her strong Brussels network will help LightingEurope to implement the Strategic Roadmap 2025 and to work with EU decision makers and foster a positive business environment.”

SSL-erate program

Moving to the SSL-erate program, that initiative was started three years back by the EC and 24 partners from industry, academia, municipalities, and research clusters. The Dutch research organization TNO (The Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research) coordinated the work that included workshops, business development experiments, and more. The work touched SSL participants ranging from lighting designers and specifiers to contractors and installers to the stakeholders using facilities in areas such as education and healthcare.

Presumably, SSL-erate delivered on the project goals, helping the EC advance it SSL policy. And the projects yielded considerable real-world data on SSL deployments, LED lighting in general, and specific applications such as HCL. LightingEurope will continue making that information store available at LightingEurope said it would manage the online platform for three more years and the SSL-erate partners will also maintain their network for sharing data.

About the Author

Maury Wright | Editor in Chief

Maury Wright is an electronics engineer turned technology journalist, who has focused specifically on the LED & Lighting industry for the past decade. Wright first wrote for LEDs Magazine as a contractor in 2010, and took over as Editor-in-Chief in 2012. He has broad experience in technology areas ranging from microprocessors to digital media to wireless networks that he gained over 30 years in the trade press. Wright has experience running global editorial operations, such as during his tenure as worldwide editorial director of EDN Magazine, and has been instrumental in launching publication websites going back to the earliest days of the Internet. Wright has won numerous industry awards, including multiple ASBPE national awards for B2B journalism excellence, and has received finalist recognition for LEDs Magazine in the FOLIO Eddie Awards. He received a BS in electrical engineering from Auburn University.