Jerry Kalov, a long-time consumer electronics executive who also contributed much of his time and expertise to the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) and was the first ever recipient of CEA’s Lifetime Achievement Award, has died at 69.
CEA reported that he passed away Tuesday morning following a long battle with leukemia.
Kalov, who most recently headed Kay Associates, a management consulting firm based in Menlo Park, Calif., was a longtime leader in the consumer electronics industry and a staunch CEA supporter and committed volunteer.
Kalov served as chairman of CEA from 1992 to 1994. Following his chairmanship, he remained an active volunteer leader, serving as industry executive advisor, a member of CEA’s executive board and its board of industry leaders. He also was a recent inductee into the CE Hall of Fame.
“Hearts are heavy today as our industry mourns the loss of a great man, industry leader and dear friend,” said CEA’s president/CEO Gary Shapiro. “He set a phenomenal example of volunteer leadership — always giving of his time, meeting with staff and helping to grow the association and the International CES.
Shapiro added, “His list of contributions to our industry and our association are many — Jerry played a critical role in negotiating the formation of CEA as a standalone association, he helped us grow by leading us through several key mergers, and he provided key strategic advice that directly helped the International CES grow into the world’s largest annual showcase for consumer technology. More importantly, he was a mentor and friend to me, our staff and to many throughout the industry. A great man has passed. His passing will be sorely felt.”
Kalov’s involvement in the electronics industry for more than 46 years also included a number of key executive positions in manufacturing, retailing, and wholesale distribution. From 1985 until his retirement in 1998, he was president and CEO of Cobra Electronics Corporation.
Prior to joining Cobra, Kalov was the senior partner in a Los Angeles-based venture capital and management consulting firm. He was president and COO of Harman International Industries, as well as president and CEO of JBL, the largest of Harman’s subsidiaries.
Prior to his Harman tenure, Kalov was the senior officer of Jensen International.
Funeral arrangements were not set at press time.