1998 - Founds Sycamore Networks, a pioneer in the optical networks industry

A Focus on OpticsDaniel E. Smith, Jr. is former president and CEO of Sycamore Networks, Inc., and former President of Lehigh's Board of Trustees, to which he was appointed in September 2007. Smith established the Daniel E. '39 and Patricia M. Smith Endowed Chair of the Center for Optical Technologies at Lehigh, in honor of his parents. He provided for the creation of the Smith Family Laboratory for Optical Technologies, a three-story addition to Sinclair Laboratory housing an optoelectronics cleanroom and epitaxial growth facility. The Center for Optical Technologies advances research and commercialization of optical technologies.

Smith and Gururaj Deshpande founded optical networking pioneer Sycamore Networks (NASDAQ:SCMR) in 1998. The company develops and markets a broad range of optical networking products that enable network service providers to transform the capacity created by their fiber optic networks into bandwidth for the delivery of high-speed data services. Previously, he co-founded and led Cascade Communications, another pioneering data communications company, which is now part of Alcatel-Lucent Technologies.

Other Influence at Lehigh

Smith has also supported athletics projects, including the renovation of historic Grace Hall and final stage construction of the Ulrich Sports Complex for lacrosse, soccer and field hockey. He and his wife, Elizabeth Riley, endowed the Smith Family Men's Lacrosse Coach position in 2007.

Smith and his wife are also members of the Tower Society and the Asa Packer Society. Smith also serves as honorary co-chair of Shine Forever: The Campaign for Lehigh.

Youth and Education

A native of Nyack, N.Y., Smith graduated from Lehigh in 1971 with a B.S. in industrial engineering. As an undergraduate, Smith was a member of the men's varsity lacrosse and swimming teams. He served as vice president and treasurer of the class of 1971 and a member of Beta Theta Pi fraternity. He continued studies at Harvard University and received an M.B.A. in finance and general management in 1976. He served as an officer in the United States Navy from 1971-73.

Nyack, New York
B.S. Industrial Engineering
Notable Achievement: 
Founds Sycamore Networks, Inc.