Interest is rapidly growing in solid-state lasers emitting from 1500-nm to 2100-nm with applications in eye-safe range finding, LIDAR, infrared countermeasures, medicine, dentistry, and others. Traditionally, these solid-state lasers have been pumped by flash lamps or more recently, by semiconductor diode lasers. In the case of the latter, the diodes of choice have been those emitting below 1-μm. The sub-micron class of semiconductor diode lasers is highly mature and has enjoyed recent rapid advances in power and efficiency. Unfortunately, the quantum defect generated when converting to the desired wavelengths results in large amounts of excess heat generation leading to costly and heavy, expensive cooling systems and performance problems related to thermal lensing. System complexity adds further cost and weight when intermediaries, such as optical parametric oscillators, are required to reach the desired longer wavelengths. Recent advances in laser diodes emitting from 1400-nm to over 1900-nm now enable the near resonant pumping of such solid state media as Er:YAG, Ho:YAG and Cr:ZnSe. Record results in the peak output power and electrical-to-optical conversion efficiency of diode lasers emitting around 1470-nm, 1700-nm and 1900-nm are presented here.