Guy Gecht, CEO, EFI, Frank Romano, Professor, Rochester Institute of Technology, and Erwin Widmer, Deputy Managing Director, Ugra, have been named the recipients of the 2015 Michael H. Bruno Award for outstanding contributions to the Graphic Arts Industry. The award is bestowed annually by the Technical Association of the Graphic Arts (TAGA).
The Michael H. Bruno Award from TAGA recognizes professionals with distinguished careers in appreciation of their dedicated service and contributions to the advancement of graphic arts internationally. Established in 1948 as a forum for reporting on new research and technology in the graphic arts, TAGA is an international organization of technologists, scientists, technical, and production personnel in the printing and allied industries.
Guy Gecht, CEO, EFI, is a hands-on visionary CEO who has helped redefine the role printing plays in the global communications and marketing industries. He has also helped make EFI a leader in technical innovation, guiding it to becoming one of the industry's most successful publicly traded companies.
After graduating with a B.S. in Computer Science and Mathematics from Ben-Gurion University in Israel, he served five years (1985–1990) as an officer in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). At the age of 25, he had more than four years' experience managing people and very complex high-tech projects in a timeframe when personal computers were beginning to edge out minicomputers. Following the IDF, Gecht began working at Apple's Europe and Israel subsidiaries, and after nearly a year in that role, he made the decision to move to America. Gecht began his career at EFI as an engineering executive in 1995.
At the time he joined EFI, the company primarily served the office printing market, providing EFI Fiery RIPs to the industry's leading printer manufacturers. Four years later, he was promoted from director of software engineering to vice president and general manager of Fiery products. He became the company's president in mid-1999 and moved into his current position, CEO, in January 2000.
"I am extremely grateful to the EFI team—their hard work and passion for the industry during my two decades with the company put me in a position to receive this award," said Gecht. "It is an honor to be included among the prestigious list of past Bruno Award Recipients, and I am excited to be presented this award alongside great thought leaders such as Frank Romano and Erwin Widmer."
Frank Romano, Professor Emeritus, Rochester Institute of Technology, is recognized by many in the printing and graphic arts industries as the editor of the International Paper Pocket Pal, or as author of the thousands of articles he has written. His career has spanned 56 years, he has authored 56 books, including the 10,000-term Encyclopedia of Graphic Communications with Richard Romano, which is considered a standard reference in the industry.
He has consulted for major corporations, publishers, governments, and other users of digital printing and publishing technology. He wrote the first report on on-demand digital printing in 1980 and ran the first conference on the subject in 1985. He has conceptualized many of the workflow and applications techniques of the industry and was the principal researcher on the landmark Electronic Document Scholarship Foundation (EDSF) study Printing in the Age of the Web and Beyond.
He has been quoted in many newspapers and publications, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Times of London, USA Today, Business Week, and Forbes, as well as on TV and radio. Romano has appeared on the PBS Program History Detectives and has been an expert witness in legal cases involving patents and forgery, most recently for a case involving Facebook.
Romano has spent 20 years in full-time teaching at RIT and 15 years as an adjunct professor for RIT and Cal Poly, and has consulted for hundreds of print users from the United Nations and Government Agencies to Insurance Companies and Publishers. He also currently serves as president of the Museum of Printing in North Andover, MA.
Erwin Widmer is the Deputy Managing Director of Ugra, the Swiss Centre of Competence for Media and Printing Technology and is a long-time member of the ISO TC 130. Previously, as the Managing Director of Ugra, he made major contributions to the development of the PSO certification for the printing industry, a description of all requirements for each step in the printing workflow. The application of the PSO in a printing company helps to facilitate the communication, to achieve a better quality, to have a greener production, leading to a more successful organization.
Widmer is a graduate of the Swiss Applied University for Printing Management and Sciences and began his career as a reproduction photographer in the late 1960s and has since held many roles in production, testing, and research. He has a background in photography, silk screen printing, gravure printing, label printing, and offset printing. He has been a great supporter of education and research, teaching and supervising theses at Technical Graphic Arts School, Zurich. He has been active with TAGA for more than 25 years and served on the board of directors. He is the recipient of the 1996 Silver medal of the Institute of Printing, England, for the best trade article "The information content of Images." He has published extensively throughout the world, including ten TAGA conference papers.
"TAGA is the best place in the world to meet researchers and experts from the printing industry, and I am honored to be recognized with the Bruno Award by TAGA," said Widmer.