Structured cabling pioneer and founder of Ortronics, Inc. Maurice “Mo” Orlando died April 28 at his home in Long Boat Key, FL, at the age of 91. The announcement was made by Mark C. Panico, president, Data Communications, Legrand, North America. Legrand acquired Ortronics, Inc. in 1998.

“We at Legrand owe Mr. Orlando a debt of gratitude for building the foundation of what has become a leading global player in the data communications marketplace and want to recognize him for his vision, vast knowledge and contribution to the structured cabling industry.  Please join us in extending our heartfelt condolences and appreciation for all his accomplishments to the Orlando family,” said Panico.

Mr. Orlando founded Ortronics, Inc., in Norwich, Conn., in 1966. He utilized his engineering background to design, build and patent his own assembly line machinery that manufactured electrical coils and wire harnesses. The company also designed and built transformers for IBM, its first major customer. In 1968 and throughout the 1970s, Ortronics continued to build cabling assemblies for the Regional Bell Operating Companies and soon became the largest independent manufacturer of speed relay coils in New England. In the early 1980s Ortronics developed a bridging adapter for Customer Premise Equipment for the telephone industry.

In 1985, Ortronics entered the data communications market with modular patch panels and data adapters designed to work in the twisted pair environment. As the structured cabling industry grew, Mr. Orlando was instrumental in introducing category jacks designed to meet specific industry standards.  In 1994, Ortronics set a precedent in the industry with the introduction of the Category 5 modular to 110 Patch Panel. That same year, the first Mighty Mo® cable management system was introduced. The Mighty Mo product family, which was named after Mo Orlando, continues to innovate today with its latest Mighty Mo 20 rack system set to launch this month.