Inspiring Illumination
McClung Lighting Research Foundation

Jim H. McClung Biography

Jim McClung, former Chairman and CEO of the Lithonia Lighting Group, retired on December 31, 2000, after 36 years with Lithonia Lighting. He joined Lithonia in 1964 after receiving his MBA from Harvard Business School and service in the Air Force as Communication Electronics Officer. McClung also held a degree in Physics from Emory University. McClung worked in several capacities within the company holding such titles as Controller, Vice President of Sales, and Vice President of Manufacturing before becoming President and CEO in 1976.

During his 36-year tenure, including 24 years as President, Lithonia Lighting’s annual sales grew from $22 million to $1.5 billion and became the largest lighting fixture manufacturer in the world. In 1964, the annual sales were $22 million. The dramatic growth was driven primarily by Lithonia branded products, but key acquisitions contributed including Holophane, Peerless, Hydrel, York (Canada), Reloc and Gotham.

In addition to his leadership of the Lithonia organization, McClung also served as Chairman of the Board of Governors of the National Electrical Manufacturers Association. He served as Senior Manufacturers Advisor to the National Association of Electrical Distributors and was also a member of the Board of Governors and Executive Committee of the Industry Data Exchange Association. He was a member of the World Presidents Organization, the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America and the Electrical Manufacturer Club, as well as a member of the National Service Industries, Inc. Board.

At the time of his retirement, McClung said in a letter to the 9,000 Lithonia Lighting Employees, "We built not only the largest, but I believe the best, lighting fixture manufacturing company in the world. It has been an honor to be part of this achievement."  McClung passed in August 2019, leaving a legacy of achievements in the lighting industry.