Walter’s leadership of LeCroy Corporation into the oscilloscope market created impressive growth at the company – within five years, the company had nearly tripled in size, and oscilloscopes accounted for the majority of the company’s revenues.Show more
Walter hired additional leaders to guide the new product streams and manage the growth, all the while maintaining an active role in product design and development (he held several US patents for electronic circuits and instrumentation).
He rarely accepted the answer, "We can't do that." Rather, he encouraged his staff to innovate and was known to motivate the LeCroy engineers by telling them, "You people are not making mistakes fast enough!" In 1992, he received the John Fluke Award for "Excellence in Management and Leadership in the Test Industry." In 1994, LeCroy Corporation achieved new revenue records after releasing the 9354 Series of digital storage oscilloscopes, which provided 500 MHz of bandwidth at up to 2 gigasamples/second (GS/s) and 8 megapoints (Mpts) of acquisition memory. Walter became Chairman of the Board of LeCroy Corporation, then took the company public in 1995.
Walter cultivated an open, creative, entrepreneurial culture where he embraced outside expertise and pushed responsibilities as low in the organization as possible. He was also passionate about personal freedom and about producing products in the United States while competing worldwide. To this day, the vast majority of Teledyne LeCroy’s oscilloscope products are wholly designed, assembled and tested in the Chestnut Ridge, NY facility where the company relocated in the early 1980s.
In early 2002, the company moved from solely producing oscilloscopes in the mid-bandwidth range to releasing the WaveMaster 8500 high-bandwidth oscilloscope with 5 GHz of bandwidth. This product missed by days overtaking Tektronix for bandwidth leadership (Tektronix had a 4 GHz oscilloscope at the time and announced a 6 GHz oscilloscope days before LeCroy’s 5 GHz launch). LeCroy continued innovating by creating the first oscilloscopes to double the bandwidth (SDA 11000, April of 2005) and then triple the bandwidth (SDA 18000, May of 2006) provided by the core front-end amplifiers and ADCs, finally overtaking Tektronix as the supplier of the world’s fastest real-time oscilloscope (WaveMaster 830 Zi oscilloscope with 30 GHz of bandwidth, January of 2009). In October 2014, LeCroy released the world’s first real-time oscilloscope to reach 100 GHz of bandwidth (LabMaster 10-100Zi) — an achievement not yet matched by Tektronix as of this writing. LeCroy was also the industry leader in 12-bit high resolution oscilloscopes (HRO, 2010) and later trademarked as high definition oscilloscopes (HDO®) with the launch of the HDO4000 and HDO6000 Series in 2012). Walter was elected to the Electronic Design Hall of Fame in 2007.
In 2012, LeCroy Corporation was purchased by Teledyne Technologies and became the wholly owned division Teledyne LeCroy. Nonetheless, in Walter’s spirit, oscilloscope innovation has continued. Notably, Teledyne LeCroy shipped an 80-channel, 36 GHz bandwidth (40 channels at 65 GHz) oscilloscope in January of 2022 to the Telecommunications Research Organization (known as NICT) in Japan, which (as of this writing) is the highest bandwidth density oscilloscope (utilizing a single, high-speed clocking architecture) ever delivered to a customer.
The company he founded now employs more than 500 people in several US states and a dozen countries around the world.
Walter remained active on the board of LeCroy Corporation until the sale to Teledyne Technologies. He stayed involved with Teledyne LeCroy, visiting the Chestnut Ridge, NY headquarters and participating in strategic retreats. His annual visits to the company holiday party were much appreciated and loved by employees.