Seattle native James Neufeld passed away unexpectedly on April 26. He grew up in the business, working at his father’s lighting store (Pacific Northwest Lighting) from a young age. In addition to achieving ALA Lighting Specialist certification, he was well-respected among Greater Seattle builders for his expertise in offering lighting packages and plans that met the latest energy codes for single and multi-family homes as well as renowned for his notable skills in specifying innovative lighting designs. He was also proficient in specializing the layout and design of door and bath hardware for residential installations.
After 30 years as a top salesman at Seattle Lighting, he joined North Coast Lighting several years ago as the designated lighting expert for handling outside sales. His proficiency in anticipating area builders’ needs plus his ability to solve their toughest lighting challenges led to instant success.
“He treated everyone he met – from colleagues to customers – with the utmost respect and delighted all with his irrepressible humor. He was the bright light in so many lives, and will be greatly missed,” recalls his wife Laurel Neufeld, principal of Northwest Lighting Sales Agency. “If I had to sum up the life of James Neufeld in one sentence, it would be, ‘He was a man with unlimited enthusiasm, a zest for life, and who always showed a capacity for Love bigger than the sky.'”
More than 100 of his family, friends, and colleagues gathered at his memorial service on May 8 to celebrate his life and share their favorite memories. For example, Al Thomas, CLC, who worked with Neufeld at Seattle Lighting as well as currently at North Coast Lighting, recalled, “He would stop by my desk every morning and greet me with, ‘Hi honey!’ He was the only man I would let get away with saying that!”