Editor’s Note: I am profoundly sad sharing this news. John was a friend, client, and inspiration to me and not only is the MR industry lessened by his sudden passing but so is the world as a whole. His legacy should be a lesson to us all. On behalf of the entire GreenBook team we offer our deepest condolences and heartfelt sympathies to John’s family, team, colleagues and friends.
Beloved Leader in the Marketing Research Industry Leaves Profound Legacy
AUBURN HILLS, MI – July 26, 2012 – Gongos Research is deeply saddened to announce the sudden passing of John Gongos, its beloved founder and CEO, on the morning of July 25, 2012. Gongos, 51, was surrounded by his family at William Beaumont Hospital, in Royal Oak, Michigan. He was diagnosed with metastatic melanoma in his hometown of Rochester Hills on Tuesday, July 17.
Sorrowed by the turn of events, COO and current acting president Camille Nicita stated, “There are simply no words to describe the loss of our mentor, friend and leader. Twenty one years ago he set out to creajte a company that was an expression of who he was as a person. His essence is reflected in all of us at the company and because of that, his legacy will live on.”
Gongos was a hands-on CEO, actively leading the company up until July 10. Beyond providing strategic oversight, Gongos made a personal impact on every member of the company. In addition to meeting prospective employees before hire, he individually met with them to solidify their understanding of the company’s deeply rooted culture. Gongos also had an uncanny ability to recognize the unique strengths of his employees and actively position them to succeed. In 2009, he formed “Gongos Gives,” a program that provided employees with a platform for community volunteerism and the opportunity to give back.
As a lifelong market researcher, Gongos remained a practitioner and consultant to clients he had worked with over the course of his career. His passion for research and desire to create a great place for people to thrive professionally and personally triggered the launch of his own company. Early on, Gongos foresaw the pivotal role innovation would play in market research and befittingly set the course for it to flourish within the company.
As an active steward of the marketing research industry, Gongos served on the Board of Directors for the Council for American Survey Research Organizations (CASRO), and recently co-chaired its Management Conference in June. He also served on the Board of Directors and Compensation Committee for The Albrecht Companies, Inc. As an alumnus of Miami University-Ohio he regularly addressed students on marketing research and played an active role in the recruitment of fellow alumni.
Gongos is survived by his loving wife of 22 years Anne; daughter Ali (20), son Austin (17), daughter Olivia (12); and mother JoAnn, sister Laura, and brother Jim.
Visitation will take place at Modetz Funeral Home in Orion, Michigan on Saturday, July 28 from 2:00pm – 6:00pmand Sunday, July 29 from 5:00pm –8:00pm. Funeral services will be held at Kensington Community Church in Troy, Michigan on Monday, July 30. In observance of his life, Gongos Research will be closed for business that day.
Donations in his honor may be made to Kensington Community Church in Troy, Michigan.
For a glimmer of the legacy Gongos leaves, we invite you to view this once internal-only video produced last year in celebration of the company’s 20th anniversary.
Based on a desire to create impact for its clients, Gongos Research uses both innovative and foundational approaches to consumer research. Its research practice areas blend a hands-on, yet consultative style to synthesize findings and shape consumer stories. Proprietary offerings, including gongos Mobile andConsumer Village, are guided by its research innovation team which continually develops new ways to gain consumer perspective in a changing world.
Gongos Research has worked with companies such as Hallmark Cards, MasterFoods, Best Buy, U.S. Bank, Visa, GM and Chrysler. In 2007, the company was first named to the Inc. 5000 list of “The Fastest Growing Companies in America,” and is among the Honomichl Top 50 U.S. marketing research organizations. For further insight into the Gongos culture, visit gongos.com.
John Gongos, our steadfast leader & friend.