Mark Lien, Shelly Prew Honored at IES Detroit Section’s 100th Anniversary and Honoring Stephen Squillace

Mark Lien
Mark Lien

On Thursday, 11 May, I had the privilege of attending the remarkable Stephen Squillace Centennial Celebration, marking the IES Detroit Section’s 100th Anniversary. Held at the Birmingham, MI Country Club, the event brought together industry professionals to commemorate this momentous occasion. Among the highlights were the tribute to Steve Squillace, the recognition of Shelley Prew for her Distinguished Service Award (DSA), and the induction of Mark Lien into the Michigan Lighting Hall of Fame.

Shelley Prew, a recipient of the IES Distinguished Service Award in New Orleans last year, graciously shared her insights on the profound significance of IES. She expressed, “IES has been the most rewarding investment of my time. Young people don’t realize what IES can do for them both personally and professionally.” Shelley emphasized how IES played a pivotal role during her transition from a design role to a sales position at Cooper Lighting Solutions. The organization provided her with credibility, as people recognized her from her various roles within IES. Shelley also acknowledged the vital role played by local IES sections, describing them as the core of her existence within the society.

During the celebration, Shelley introduced Mark Lien, who was being inducted into the Michigan Lighting Hall of Fame. Shelley praised Mark’s impressive contributions, including his extensive experience in teaching lighting across four continents, serving on over 20 committees, and monitoring more than 100 lighting organizations.

Mark Lien
Mark Lien

When Mark took the stage, he humbly expressed his introverted nature and how this honor was a remarkable achievement for him. He shared, “If this honor came from any other section, it would not mean as much. I spent two-thirds of my life in Michigan, and I consider Detroit my home.” Mark’s career journey began as a paperboy for the Detroit News and progressed through various positions, including working for Burger Chef and Topps.  He enjoyed his work at Topps, but they refused to give him time off to attend Woodstock, so he quit shortly thereafter and moved to K-Mart where he ran their home centers.   Eventually, he joined Marshall Campbell Electric and built and managed their 9000 square foot showroom. From there he joined Cooper Lighting in Elk Grove Village and moved to Peachtree City where he managed The Source, which he says, to this day, is likely the best lighting training facility in North America.  When Hubbell was consolidating their brands and training, Mark moved to Greenville SC, established and managed The Lighting Solutions Center.  From there he moved to OSRAM SYL V ANIA in Danvers, MA and later their new HQ in Wilmington as their Director of Government and Industry Relations,.

Mark’s experience in the lighting industry culminated in his position as Industry Relations Manager at IES, where he served for six years before transitioning into his current role as president of Augmented Illuminations and consultant for IES.

Mark Lien’s depth of knowledge and expertise in the industry is unparalleled, having trained countless professionals throughout his career. His accolades, including the Lifetime Achievement Award from EdisonReport in 2022, are a testament to his remarkable contributions. His induction into the Michigan Hall of Fame is a well-deserved honor, recognizing him as one of the living legends in our industry.

Mark Lien
Mark Lien Hall of Fame

Your humble editor has had the privilege of interviewing Mark several times, the first was  in 2013 when he delivered his renowned “Future of Lighting” talk—a presentation that he gives often.  The extensive list of credentials after his name – LC, HBDP, CLMC, CLEP LEED AP – speaks to his vast expertise and dedication.

The IES Detroit Section’s 100th Anniversary Celebration was an evening filled with gratitude, recognition, and inspiration. Honoring industry legends like Steve Squillace and Mark Lien serves as a reminder of the immeasurable impact they have had on the lighting community and the lasting legacy they leave behind.

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