JERRY R. JUNKINS
BY MARK SHEPHERD, JR.
JERRY R. JUNKINS, chairman, president, and chief executive officer of Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI), died on May 9, 1996, of a heart attack while on a European tour of TI manufacturing facilities.
Jerry was born December 9, 1937, in Fort Madison, Iowa, to Ralph and Selma Junkins. He was one of four children the couple reared in Montrose, Iowa, a town of about 600 that hugs the Mississippi River. During the summers, Jerry worked at his father's automotive garage, fixing tires, polishing cars, and pumping gas. During the school months, he played on the school baseball team and delivered the town newspaper.
He graduated salutatorian among a class of twenty-five students. His future wife, Sally Schevers, was valedictorian. The couple was married for thirty-seven years at the time of his death.
Jerry earned a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from Iowa State University in 1959, and a master's in engineering administration from Southern Methodist University in 1968. He also received an honorary doctorate of engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1989 and was member of the National Academy of Engineering.
Jerry worked his entire adult life at Texas Instruments in Dallas, Texas. Joining TI in 1959, Jerry spent most of his operational career in the company's defense business as a manufacturing engineer and supervisor, and he eventually became manager of