Continuing the celebration of our lighting heroes


    May 21, 2021


    Signify is shining a light on some of our lighting innovators and unsung heroes who help us unlock the extraordinary potential of light.


    Each year, the International Day of Light offers an opportunity to appreciate light in science, culture, art, education and sustainable development.

    To mark this year’s IDL theme of “improving the means of outreach and interaction between science and society,” we’re highlighting the work of some our people who have made a difference in lighting and in people’s lives. In the first blog post of the series, we highlighted individuals who have made contributions as diverse as co-creating Philips Hue, introducing solar streetlighting to off-grid villages in India and pioneering research into contextually aware lighting. No innovation is created in a vacuum, just as no individual is ever solely responsible for a project. However, we shouldn’t let that stop us from shining a light on some of our people who have an amazing track record in pushing the boundaries of what is possible with light.

    Hero for lighting design and thought leadership

    Guillermo Pasina, Sales Application Specialist
    Name: Guillermo Pasina, Sales Application Specialist
    Years at Signify: 22

    Monuments, facades, stadiums and offices – all lit up, thanks to Guillermo, who has led many impressive lighting projects, such as the Palacio de la Justicia in Argentina, the Obelisco in Buenos Aires and the River Plate stadium, to name but a few.

    “What inspires me the most is the fact that I know that I am doing something, that gets into people's lives. I may beautify a monument with light, or simply light my children’s bedroom when they go to sleep peacefully.

    “There are no rules or recipes in lighting design. It may be compared to cooking, all the elements are in place, the challenge is to combine them well.

    “An old teacher taught me that the element, space, or place where the design happens, is not important. The most important thing is to find within those elements, spaces or places that we want to show or hide. The wise game of light and shadow.”

    Hero for leading a team that’s lit 6 million lives

    Yue Cui, Head of Signify Foundation
    Name: Yue Cui, Head of Signify Foundation
    Years at Signify: 10

    The Signify Foundation is dedicated to supporting underprivileged and underserved communities across the world by enabling access to light. In pursuing this mission, the Foundation works with many partners and leverages Signify’s expertise and knowledge to help develop and provide easily accessible, sustainable lighting systems that have a meaningful impact on people’s lives.

    “I’m convinced that I have the best job in the company, leading a Foundation that supports underprivileged communities across the world by enabling access to light. Over the past four years, we have lit 6 million lives – that’s around 4,000 lives transformed each day!

    “Of course, we face critical challenges in the field of international aid and development, but they are part and parcel of the journey towards making a positive impact on the world. And I recognize how fortunate I am: I have a whole army behind me at Signify. Technology, design, and dreams. The Signify Foundation comes together as a dreamland for people with passion.” 

    Hero for being the project lead on CDM lighting for retail in the ‘90s

    Jan Stoffels, R&D Manager Conventional Lamps
    Name: Jan Stoffels, R&D Manager Conventional Lamps
    Years at Signify: 33

    Though LEDs (and connected LEDs) are everywhere now, before they arrived on the scene, retail shops used halogen lights or metal halide in quartz lamps.

    Jan, with his team in Belgium, worked on  the Ceramic Discharge Metal halide (Philips MASTERColour), that offered great quality of light combined with good accent and high efficacy, transforming the retail experience. “With a small team, I picked up where my predecessors in research left off. A breakthrough was still needed.”

    That breakthrough came in a couple of “Aha!” moments. The first was enabling a longer lifetime for lamps burning in a horizontal position and later on to all burning positions. “The best ideas came when riding my racing bike on the weekends or on holiday,” he says. Within three years the project team had a product ready to go to market, where it transformed the retail lighting experience and brought exponential growth for then-Philips Lighting’s market position.

    Jan loves the technology: “There’s chemistry, physics, life tests… all within those bulbs!” And customers loved them too. “The first year surpassed our best estimates, and in a few subsequent years they doubled. Sales even increased by a factor of five one year.” Overall, Jan is proud that the work he did with his team put the company in such a strong position for indoor shop lighting.

    FUN FACT: CDM lamps are also used for exterior architectural lighting applications and one of the first buildings to use them was the Reichstag in Berlin!

    Hero for launching and leading the marketing for Interact City

    Jennifer Schoop, Global Marketing Communications Manager
    Name: Jennifer Schoop, Global Marketing Communications Manager
    Years at Signify: 3.5

    Interact City is the best-selling connected LED street lighting system and management software. It can help city authorities to improve city services and citizen safety, beautify public spaces, engage with their citizens and encourage civic pride. Oh, and it can help to reduce energy costs and improve efficiency too.

    “I’m honored to work with a great team that’s contributed to Interact City being in 2,260 projects across 58 countries. Before I joined Signify, I took lighting for granted. I didn’t know that connected lighting could generate data to help make cities smarter and safer. To this day, I’m still amazed by the many user cases and I’m passionate about the technology behind it.


    “Now that I’m older, I’m more aware of the need to be safe in a city at night. I’ve witnessed it first-hand in the center of Eindhoven - when the bars in the Stratumseind close, the street lighting is turned up. This deters trouble and makes people feel safer and more secure. Knowing that it’s our technology in use makes me proud. It tells me what we do is important.”

    Hero for inventing Light ARchitect™

    Nam Cho, Senior Manager – Advanced Development
    Name: Nam Cho, Senior Manager – Advanced Development
    Years at Signify: 8

    Signify acquired Cooper Lighting Solutions in 2020 to strengthen its position in the attractive North American lighting market. Cooper Lighting’s Light ARchitect™ is an augmented reality mobile application that lets potential customers to instantly visualize light fixtures in their space.  Consequently, it tends to make for a faster decision-making process.​

    “People that I work with inspire me the most. Their vision, their commitment and their determination keep me energized everyday.

    About the author:

    Ryan Millar

    Ryan Millar

    Chief Editor


    For further information, please contact:

    Signify Global Integrated Communications
    Neil Pattie
    Tel: + 31 6 15 08 48 17

    About Signify


    Signify (Euronext: LIGHT) is the world leader in lighting for professionals, consumers and the Internet of Things. Our Philips products, Interact systems and data-enabled services, deliver business value and transform life in homes, buildings and public spaces. In 2023, we had sales of EUR 6.7 billion, approximately 32,000 employees and a presence in over 70 countries. We unlock the extraordinary potential of light for brighter lives and a better world. We have been in the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index since our IPO for seven consecutive years and have achieved the EcoVadis Platinum rating for four consecutive years, placing Signify in the top one percent of companies assessed. News from Signify can be found in the Newsroom, on X, LinkedIn and Instagram. Information for investors is located on the Investor Relations page.

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