Daniel E. Smith, Jr. 1971*
Daniel E. Smith, Jr. is president and CEO of Sycamore Networks, Inc., and is chairman of Lehigh University’s Board of Trustees. Smith established the Daniel E. ’39 and Patricia M. Smith Endowed Chair of the Center of Optical Technologies at Lehigh, in honor of his parents. In 2007, he and his wife, Elizabeth Riley, endowed the Smith Family Men's Lacrosse Coach position. 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 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.
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.
The Smith Funds for Research and Innovation in Science and Engineering was established in 2010. Smith and his wife, Riley, established the endowment to expand Lehigh’s research capabilities and position the university to compete on a new level.
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. Smith and his wife are members of the Tower Society and the Asa Packer Society. Smith also served as honorary co-chair of Shine Forever: The Campaign for Lehigh.