David Hearn, Stemmer Imaging UK MD, dies

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Stemmer Imaging's David Hearn has died on 21 March after a long illness.

Hearn was managing director of Stemmer Imaging UK from 2009 until retiring in July 2019. Together with Mark Williamson, now corporate marketing director at Stemmer Imaging, Hearn formed Firstsight Vision in 2001, which was then bought by Stemmer Imaging in 2004.

Arne Dehn, CEO of Stemmer Imaging, said: 'David was an amazing person and leader whose extraordinary passion helped create the success of our vision business in the UK and he also greatly influenced our industry in general. Formats that have become highly regarded in our industry and our company such as the Stemmer Imaging handbook and the Technology Forum were initiated by David, and to this day reflect his innovative outlook.'

Hearn's first involvement with vision was working for Data Translation selling PC-based data acquisition and imaging processing hardware and software. He then became the director at the Optimas and later set up Vortex Vision in 1997 – a company that Wilhelm Stemmer took a stake in.

Remembering Hearn, Williamson, who is also the current managing director at Stemmer Imaging UK, said: 'David started Vortex vision within a month of me starting Pinnacle Vision. We even had a meeting to discuss starting together; however, our competitive natures meant we started separately. It was not long before we both realised that together we could be stronger and when Imaging technology was acquired by Coreco, now Teledyne Dalsa, we took the step to join our companies.'

He continued: 'David was a truly inspiring and caring leader. His humour and compassion were second to none. David, being competitive, always created fun initiatives for the sales teams to go the extra mile which we still use today. David, you will be truly missed but never forgotten.'

Hearn was a hugely popular figure in the office and was a master of the quirky turn of phrase which quickly became known as ‘Hearnisms’. He was also renowned for his fun initiatives for the sales team and his motivating and humorous self-made awards, as well as the famous bell ringing ceremony for every order intake, which became a tradition throughout the company.

Dehn concluded: 'Today it was the company’s turn to ring the bell in honour of David. He will be sorely missed and we wish to extend our condolences to his wife Penny and the rest of his family.'

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