Lutron’s Joel Spira Among Inductees to CTA 2016 CT Hall of Fame

2016 Consumer Technology (CT) Hall of Fame pays tribute to the leaders who have advanced innovation and developed a foundation for consumer electronics.


The Consumer Technology Association (CTA) revealed the latest class of honorees that will be inducted into its 2016 Consumer Technology (CT) Hall of Fame. The CT Hall of Fame, created in 2000, pays tribute to the leaders who have advanced innovation and developed a foundation for the consumer technologies we enjoy today and others still to come.

From the custom electronics space, this year's list includes iconic founder of Lutron Electronics Joel Spira, who passed away just over one year ago. Spira's recognition is for the Home Automation Developer category. 

The 2016 class includes inventors with an idea, business executives, a distributor with distinctive strategies to bring accessories to store shelves, a retailer who marketed these products and a journalist that explained how technology works. The class also includes two teams who combined their individual efforts to make a lasting contribution to the industry:

  • Visionary Retailer: Sidney Cooper – Silo
  • Father of Bluetooth: Dr. Jaap Haartsen – Ericsson
  • Prominent Distribution Pioneer: David B. Lorsch – DBL Distributing
  • Transformational Technologist: Chuck Pagano – ESPN
  • Legendary Journalist: Steve Smith – TWICE Magazine
  • Home Automation Developer: Joel Spira – Lutron
  • Pioneering Accessories Executive: Nat Tiffen – The Tiffen Company
  • Video Game Futurist: Hiroshi Yamauchi – Nintendo

Renowned GPS Developers: Norm Hunt, Ed Tuck, Don Rea – Magellan

Distinguished Digital HDTV Grand Alliance Leaders:

  • Dr. Peter Bingham, Phillips Labs President;
  • Jim Carnes, Sarnoff Labs CEO;
  • Dr. Curt Crawford, AT&T Microelectronics President;
  • Dr. Jae Lim, MIT Professor;
  • Jerry Pearlman, Zenith Electronics CEO; and
  • Donald Rumsfeld, General Instrument CEO.

“The CT Hall of Fame celebrates our rich history of innovation,” said CTA President and CEO Gary Shapiro. “This year’s class represents leaders who laid the cornerstones for many of today’s hottest products and trends – from immersive television delivered where and when we want, to the developer of the wireless Bluetooth standard that we rely on daily to exchange data over short distances. From a satellite-based navigation system to the early days of the smart home and video games, these leaders followed their visions creating, selling, distributing and promoting products that improve consumers’ lives.”

Spira and wife Ruth were honored by the Smithsonian Institute in 2010 when several of their early lighting control inventions were accepted by the historical society. Their work in creating the solid state dimmer sits next to artifacts from Thomas Edison and Alexander Graham Bell.

Spira reflected on his career and accomplishments in a wide-ranging video interview with CE Pro in 2010.

The inductees were selected by a group of media and industry professionals, who judged the nominations submitted by manufacturers, retailers and industry journalists. The 2016 honorees will be inducted into the CT Hall of Fame in New York at an awards dinner to be held on Wednesday, November 9, at the Rainbow Room.

About the Author

Jason Knott
Jason Knott:

Jason Knott is Chief Content Officer for Emerald's Connected Brands. Jason has covered low-voltage electronics as an editor since 1990, serving as editor and publisher of Security Sales & Integration. He joined CE Pro in 2000 and serves as Editor-in-Chief of that brand. He served as chairman of the Security Industry Association’s Education Committee from 2000-2004 and sat on the board of that association from 1998-2002. He is also a former board member of the Alarm Industry Research and Educational Foundation. He has been a member of the CEDIA Business Working Group since 2010. Jason graduated from the University of Southern California.