William Redington Hewlett

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William Redington Hewlett

Birthdate: (87)
Death: January 12, 2001 (87)
Immediate Family:

Son of Albion Hewlett and Louise Hewlett
Husband of Flora Lamson and Rosemary Bradford
Father of <private> Hewlett
Brother of Louise Hewlett

Managed by: Private User
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Immediate Family

About William Redington Hewlett



William R. Hewlett Born May 20 1913 - Died Jan 12 2001

Variable Frequency Oscillation Generator Audio Signals Patent Number(s) 2,268,872

Inducted into National Inventors Hall of Fame in 1992

Cofounder of the electronics giant Hewlett-Packard, William R. Hewlett invented the audio oscillator, the first practical method of generating audio signals needed in communications, geophysics, medicine, and defense work.

Invention Impact

Until Hewlett's invention, scientists and researchers had no simple and accurate source for low-frequency signals essential to their work. One of Hewlett-Packard's first customers was Walt Disney Studios, which ordered eight of the Model 200B oscillators to use in producing the soundtrack for the film 'Fantasia.'

Inventor Bio

Hewlett was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan. His father was a professor of medicine at the University of Michigan and, later, at Stanford University. The younger Hewlett attended Stanford, receiving a B.A. in 1934 and an electrical engineering degree in 1939; his master's degree was awarded by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1936.

Hewlett met partner Dave Packard while both were in undergraduate school at Stanford. While in graduate school Hewlett developed the design for the product that later launched the Hewlett-Packard company-the model HP200A audio oscillator.

Hewlett served as an Army officer during World War II and was named vice-president of the newly incorporated Hewlett-Packard upon his return to civilian life. He served as president of H-P from 1964 to 1977 and as chief executive officer from 1969 to 1978. He is now director emeritus of the board of directors. In 1989 an old garage in Palo Alto, the first home of Hewlett-Packard, became a California historical landmark. The state dedicated it as the birthplace of Silicon Valley.


William Reddington Hewlett (May 20, 1913 – January 12, 2001) was an engineer and the co-founder, with David Packard, of the Hewlett-Packard Company (HP). He was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan but moved to Oak Brook, Illinois, when he was two. Less than one year later, he moved to San Francisco at the age of 3 years. He attended Lowell High School and was accepted at Stanford University as a favor to his late father, Albion Walter Hewlett, a former faculty member at the Stanford Medical School who had died of a brain tumor in 1925.

Hewlett received his Bachelor's degree from Stanford University in 1934, an MS degree in electrical engineering from MIT in 1936, and the degree of Electrical Engineer from Stanford in 1939. He joined the Kappa Sigma fraternity during his time at Stanford.

Hewlett attended classes taught by Fred Terman at Stanford and became acquainted with David Packard during his undergraduate work at Stanford. He and Packard began discussing forming a company in August 1937, and founded Hewlett-Packard Company as a partnership on January 1, 1939. A flip of a coin decided the ordering of their names. The company incorporated in 1947 and tendered an initial public offering in 1957. Also in 1939 he married Flora Lamson, and the couple eventually had five children: Eleanor, Walter, James, William and Mary. There are 12 grandchildren.

He was President of HP from 1964 to 1977, and served as CEO from 1968 to 1978, when he was succeeded by John A. Young. He remained chairman of the executive committee until 1983, and then served as vice chairman of the board until 1987.

In 1966, he and his wife founded the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. Flora Hewlett died in 1977. In 1978, Hewlett married Rosemary Bradford.

He died of heart failure at Portola Valley, California on January 12, 2001 and was interred at Los Gatos Memorial Park, San Jose, California.


Vermilye Medal (1975)

Lemelson-MIT Prize Lifetime Achievement Award (1995)

The 3rd Annual Heinz Award Chairman's Medal (with David Packard) (1997)[

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William Redington Hewlett's Timeline

May 20, 1913
January 12, 2001
Age 87