Yesterday, I learned the terrible news that Zach Gibler, Chairman and CEO of Lighting Sciences Group, passed away as a result of a cycling accident.  First off, I would like to offer my condolences to Zach’s family and friends in this trying time.

I did not know Zach well, but we had both become regulars at Wall Street conferences on the emerging LED lighting market.  I felt a certain affinity to Zach – we are both about the same age and were running growth companies trying to change the world.  And, yesterday I found out that we had cycling in common.  In every encounter, I found Zach to be friendly, generous, and smart.

When Zach and I first met we were having dinner at one of those Wall Street conferences.  One of the banking analysts at the table asked me to describe Digital Lumens, and Zach jumped in to tell the DL story on my behalf.  Clearly he was a student of the market, even keeping track of my emerging company.

Zach was a leader and educator in our market.  His presentations were always straight forward, convincing, and full of foresight.  Zach clearly understood that the customer was the key to his success and spoke to that customer in terms that would move the market – technology, integration, and value.  I have integrated many of Zach’s approaches into the way I talk about my own company.

It is very sad that someone so young and with so much more to give has died.  Zach Gibler will be missed.