Robert W. Galvin: The Independent Institute

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Robert W. Galvin
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Robert W. Galvin

Over a sixty-year career, Robert W. Galvin (1922–2011) had a profound effect on the public and private sectors in the United States and around the world. In positions that have included President, Chairman, Chief Executive Officer, and Chairman of the Executive Committee, Mr. Galvin led Motorola Corporation from a few hundred million dollars in annual sales to tens of billions. He is credited with leading the company as it made innovations in television receivers, dispatch mobile communication, transistors, paging, cellular technology, and other work. In 1988, Motorola was the first large company-wide winner of the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award.

Mr. Galvin is also recognized for his public-service work as chairman of the Task Force on Alternative Futures for the Department of Energy National Laboratories, which came to be known as the “Galvin Commission.” His other public-service achievements included chairing the U.S. Trade Negotiations Advisory Committee, Commission on the Future for the National Science Foundation, Task Force on Alternative Futures, Navy for the 21st Century, and President’s Advisory Council on Private Sector Initiatives. He has also been President of the Electronic Industry Association, Vice Chairman of the Universities Research Association, member of the President’s Council of Economic Advisors, Vice Chairman of the American Heritage Foundation, Chairman of International SEMATECH, member of the Foreign Intelligence Board, member of the President’s Commission on Trade and Investment, member of the Chairman’s Committee for the Computerworld Awards for the Smithsonian Institution, and Chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Illinois Institute of Technology, IIT Research Institute, and Santa Fe Institute. He was a member of the board of directors of Harris Trust and Savings Bank, International Executive Service Corporation, Chicago Museum of Science and Industry, California Institute of Technology, and Conference Board, and he was an Honorary Advisor for Beijing University.

Mr. Galvin attended Notre Dame University and the University of Chicago, and he was elected to the National Business Hall of Fame. The many other awards he received include the Bower Award and Prize in Science from the Franklin Institute, Business Leadership Award from the University of Michigan, Champion of Workplace Learning and Performance Award from the American Society of Training and Development, Excellence in Management Award from Industry Week, Bernard H. Falk Award from the National Electrical Manufacturers Association, Henry Ford II Award for Distinguished Achievement, Founders Medal from the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), French Legion of Honor, Henry Laurence Gantt Medal Distinguished Achievement in Management from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, Golden Omega from IEEE, Gold Award-Best Chief Executive from the Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA), Golden Plate Award from the American Academy of Achievement, Great American Award from B’nai B’rith, Industry Leader of the Year Award from the Automobile Hall of Fame, Joseph M. Juran Medal for Distinguished Performance in Quality Leadership, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Corporate Leadership Award, Korean Order of Industrial Service Merit, John Woodworth Leslie Humanitarian Award, Man of the Year from the American-Israel Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Medal of Achievement from the American Electronics Association, Medal of Honor from the Electronic Industry Association, Meritorious Service Award from the Army and Air National Guard, National Medal of Technology, Robert N. Noyce Award from SIA, Semper Fidelis Award from the U.S. Marine Corps, Sword of Loyola Award, Washington Award from the Western Society of Engineers, and World Trade Award. He received honorary doctoral degrees from Arizona State University, DePaul University, Midwest College of Engineering, Quincy College, St. Ambrose College, St. Xavier College, University of Arizona, University of Edinburgh, University of Limrick, and L’Universite de Technologie de Compiegne. He further authored the book, America’s Founding Secret: What the Scottish Enlightenment Taught Our Founding Fathers (Rowman and Littlefield).