IEEE Life Fellow Irwin M. Jacobs, cofounder in 1985 of Qualcomm, is the recipient of this year’s IEEE Medal of Honor. He was recognized for “leadership and fundamental contributions to digital communications and wireless technology.”
A semiconductor company in San Diego, Qualcomm designs, manufactures, and markets digital wireless telecommunications products and services globally. As CEO in the 1990s he oversaw the development of Qualcomm’s code division multiple access for cellphones, wireless base stations, and chips. The company’s CDMA technology was adopted as one of the standards for 3G wireless networks.
Jacobs retired from Qualcomm in 2009. He is currently chair of the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, a nonprofit scientific research organization in La Jolla, Calif.
He is scheduled to receive the Medal of Honor, which is sponsored by the IEEE Foundation, on 29 June in San Diego at the annual IEEE Honors Ceremony.