Sad news out of Rochester New York this week. John K. Purcell, longtime CEO and co-founder of Fibertech Networks, has passed away at the age of 73. John was one of the first in the industry to recognize the power of the metro fiber model and to build a business entirely around it. He was also an all-around fantastic guy to have known, and he will be missed.
Fibertech reached out to me back in 2008 within a few months of the launch of Telecom Ramblings to share its story. I didn't know anything about them at the time, and when I was given a description of their assets and business model I frankly thought their marketing team was, well, exaggerating a bit. (Yeah, marketing people do that to me sometimes, go figure.) They weren't of course, not a single bit, and Fibertech did it organically from the ground up. I soon came to realize that John was, as much as anyone out there, the architect of the modern fiber business in America.
I didn't actually get to meet John Purcell in person until four years ago when I finally made it to Metro Connect down in Miami. I wish I had taken the time to sit down with him more than I actually managed to since then. He maintained a low profile outside of the fiber business, unless of course you lived in and around Rochester NY where both he and Fibertech were quite active in the community.
If you knew John, feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.