From 1960 through 1990, Paul Henson played a major role in every event, proposal or development of significance in the telephone industry.
His career spanned more than 50 years, starting at the Lincoln Telephone and Telegraph Company while he was still in high school.
Following his World War II service as a fighter pilot, Henson returned to Lincoln Telephone as engineer-district manager and then chief engineer. He left in 1959 to join United Utilities (now Sprint Corp.) as vice president.
It was in the 1960s and 1970s that Henson emerged as an industry champion, proving to be a man of extraordinary insight and vision. Succeeding Carl A. Scupin as president and then chairman and CEO, Henson led his company through three decades of growth, modernization and diversification.
Henson’s career included 21 years with USITA. He was director for 16 years, member of executive committee for 12 years and served as president in 1964. He also held some 32 committee assignments with USITA. Most noteworthy were his tenure as settlements and separations chairman, during which time major improvements were achieved for the Independent Industry and his role in establishing the engineering committee. In 1970, Henson received the Association’s first Distinguished Service Medallion. TE&M Magazine named him Telecommunications Leader of the Year in 1985. He currently serves as chairman of the National Network Reliability Council and is past chair of the National Security Telecommunications Advisory Communications Advisory Committee.
Henson’s civic and philanthropic contributions mirror his industry achievements. His list of honors is diverse ranging from ITPA Director Emeritus, to honorary consul to Sweden, to Scouting’s Silver Eagle Award. He died in 1997