Joe Yaver was editor-in-chief for Optical Engineering in 1970–1971, but this was only a small part of his foundational contributions to SPIE. He served as executive director of the society from 1969 to 1993, a period of substantial growth in its scope, membership, and reputation. His accomplishments over this time period included increasing the membership tenfold, establishing SPIE’s current headquarters in Bellingham, Washington, and starting what now are two of SPIE’s largest conferences: Photonics West (PW) and Defense and Commercial Sensing (DCS). Reflections from his many SPIE colleagues paint the picture of an exceptional professional and model for all of us, and it is clear that SPIE would not be the society it is today without him. He will be missed.