Hall of Fame, Paul Klipsch
For some, audio is a passion. Sometimes that passion turns into a career and, if you are fortunate, that career becomes a legend. One such figure that fits that mold is the late Paul W. Klipsch, the founder of Klipsch Audio Technologies and the inventor of one of the most recognizable speaker designs in audio—the Klipschorn. His hard work and dedication to improving audio ranks him as one of the most preeminent scientists, inventors and entrepreneurs in his field; his name will not soon be forgotten.
His interest in audio started at an early age with radio, even before it became a huge public hit. This interest led him to study electrical engineering at New Mexico A&M (now the New Mexico State University). Later, he furthered his education with a Masters Degree in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University. Throughout his early career, he worked in many capacities, from radio at General Electric to locomotive maintenance to geophysical (oil) exploration—in the latter, he registered eight patents. Yet, all the while he worked in his spare time, developing speaker designs. His goal was to create the sound of a live orchestra in a home environment.
But it wasn't until after World War II, in which Klipsch served, that he resolved to focus his career on loudspeaker design. In 1946, the Klipsch Associates name was registered (he founded the company in 1941, though it was only made up of himself). He began to receive approval on several patent submissions and, by 1948, was able to start hiring actual employees.