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IEEE Foundation is leading a special campaign across IEEE’s expansive network to raise awareness, forge partnerships, and fund Priority Initiatives, and is partnering with IEEE Day to promote the final phase of the Campaign as we celebrate IEEE Day 2020 on 6 October.
Forty Years of Continuity and Change at the IEEE History Center

On Monday morning, 18 August 1980, Dr. Robert Friedel, director of IEEE’s new Center for the History of Electrical Engineering, arrived at the IEEE headquarters on 345 East 47th Street in New York City. Given a desk, a typewriter and telephone, he began fulfilling the mission set by the IEEE History Committee: to preserve, research and promote the histories of electrical science and technology for 220,000 members, scholars and the public. Over forty years with IEEE’s true globalization, near doubling of membership, and the digital revolution, the Center has grown in size, scope and influence for the benefit of members, remembering and recognizing their contributions to our world.


Recognize and Remember: IEEE History Center’s Service to Members

Since its inception, the IEEE History Center has recognized and remembered IEEE members and their predecessors through many forums beyond the IEEE Archives and the Milestones program. Outreach has often depended on philanthropic support, and has the added benefit of making public IEEE members’ contributions to society.

In 1981, the Center made its debut at IEEE’s premier conference, Electro.


IEEE’s Network Node for Historians

Some professionals solve technical challenges, and other professionals explain how and why they did. The IEEE History Center has always served as a network node--in former director Ron Kline’s description--between members, scholars and others interested in IEEE history. Historians who publish on IEEE topics are trained to use primary and secondary sources to give context to stories of technical innovation. Throughout its 40 year history, the Center has ensured that the resources necessary and incentives to write histories relevant to IEEE members are widely available and easy to access.


The History Center's newsletter reports on the activities of the Center and on new resources and projects in electrical history.
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Alfred Goldsmith, born in New York City on this date in 1888, was a pioneering radio and motion-picture engineer. He was one of the founders of the Institute of Radio Engineers (IRE) and president in 1928. He was a Fellow of AIEE, as well as IRE, and instrumental in the eventual merger of the societies to form IEEE. He and his wife, Gertrude, left a lasting legacy for the profession when they bequeathed approximately US$4 million IEEE Foundation. The IEEE Goldsmith Legacy League, our legacy giving group, is named in their honor.
Three electric utility companies—Philadelphia Electric, Public Service Electric & Gas, of New Jersey and Pennsylvania Power and Light—established the Pennsylvania-New Jersey Interconnection on this date in 1927. It linked two of the world’s largest electric power systems into a single “grid” that dwarfed other systems of the time.
Join us for a free IEEE Foundation Spotlight Webinar presented in cooperation with the IEEE History Center at 1:00 pm EDT: Edison Invented a Practical Incandescent Lamp, So What? Prepare for an enjoyable hour as Institutional Historian and Archivist Mary Ann C. Hellrigel, Ph.D. shares about one of her favorite eras of history.
Michael E. Pupin, co-inventor of the loading coil (used in long-distance telephone communication) was born in Idvon, now part of Serbia on this date in 1854. He was president of the Institute of Radio Engineers in 1917 and the American Institute of Electrical Engineers in 1925-1926. In 1924, he received the IRE Medal of Honor, which today is known as the IEEE Medal of Honor and is supported by the IEEE Foundation.
IEEE Day celebrates the first time in history when IEEE members worldwide gathered to share their technical ideas in 1884. Worldwide celebrations demonstrate the ways thousands of IEEE members in local communities join together to collaborate on ideas that leverage technology for a better tomorrow. Take the tour of the IEEE Archive recorded for IEEE Day 2018.

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This Campaign Update provides news on the Realize the Full Potential of IEEE Campaign and the individuals and organizations whose charitable gifts make the Campaign a success.
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