Learn about the key steps in SRI's founding and rise to prominence as a world-class research institute and innovation center.
|1925||Dr. Robert E. Swain, Stanford University professor of chemistry, championed the idea of an interdisciplinary research institute within the University. Early supporters included Stanford alumnus and trustee, Herbert Hoover, the 31st U.S. President.|
|1927||Stanford President Ray Lyman Wilbur recommended that an institute plan be developed.|
|1929||Stanford's annual report presented a faculty proposal for a research institute. The institute idea was tabled in 1930 as the Great Depression spreads.|
|1939||Stanford's faculty committee discussed the institute idea while meeting at the Bohemian Grove in Northern California. Ray Lyman Wilbur presented the idea to University trustees.|
|1941||The institute idea was again tabled when the U.S. enters World War II.|
Plans for a research foundation were presented to Stanford President Donald Tresidder and Vice President Alvin Eurich, and to California Governor Earl Warren (later the 14th chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court). San Francisco businessman Atholl McBean and Ernest Black of the Pacific Research Foundation in Los Angeles met with Eurich at Stanford.
|1946||Atholl McBean continued to campaign for a foundation dedicated to research in science, technology, industry, economics, and management. His dedication led to his eventual acknowledgment as the founder, along with the Stanford University Board of Trustees, of Stanford Research Institute.|
|1946||Stanford University trustees approved in principle the proposal for a research institute. Articles of incorporation for Stanford Research Institute were signed and filed with the state of California on November 6, and SRI was granted nonprofit status. Stanford University trustees elected 11 SRI directors.
SRI's first research project began in this year—an investigation of improving of the guayule plant as a source of rubber.
The institute moved from the Stanford University campus to Stanford Village, the former site of the U.S. Army's Dibble Hospital in Menlo Park, California—still SRI's headquarters today.
Weldon B. "Hoot" Gibson joined SRI as its third staff member and first chairman of business and economics. He held numerous executive roles, including senior director emeritus from 1988 until his death in 2001. Known as "Mr. SRI", Gibson is credited with building SRI’s international programs and bringing SRI to worldwide prominence.
|1948||SRI inaugurated the International Division. The institute had 60 active research projects and 198 staff members. Jesse E. Hobson was named SRI's executive director.|
|1950||SRI opened its Washington, D.C. facility.|
|1953||SRI's Poulter Laboratory, named after researcher and explorer Thomas Poulter, was founded, marking the beginning of 60 years of research in the response of materials and structures to impacts, fatigue, explosions, and fractures.|
|1955||E. Finley Carter became SRI's executive director (a title to be changed to president in 1958).|
|1955||SRI began a 13-year series of transactions to purchase from Stanford University all the land it presently occupies in Menlo Park, California.|
|1956||SRI's Molecular Physics Laboratory is founded. The lab performs fundamental and applied research in laser sensors, mass spectroscopy, and atmospheric processes. By year's end, the institute had 742 research projects and a staff of 1,408.|
|1963||Karl A. Folkers was appointed SRI's president, and SRI opened its Tokyo, Japan office.|
|1966||SRI's pioneering Artificial Intelligence Center was founded.|
|1968||Charles A. Anderson became SRI's president.|
|1970||Stanford Research Institute became independent from Stanford University on January 13.|
|1977||Stanford Research Institute was renamed SRI International on May 16.|
William F. Miller was named SRI's president.
SRI established the SRI Fellows Award to recognize the technical, scientific, and professional contributions of SRI staff members.
|1987||Sarnoff Corporation (then known as RCA Laboratories) became a wholly owned subsidiary of SRI. In 2011, Sarnoff was integrated fully into SRI.|
|1990||James Tietjen was appointed SRI's president.|
William P. Sommers was named SRI's president.
SRI established the Mimi Award as the highest recognition for staff members who have fostered the personal and professional growth of their co-workers.
|1996||Commemorating SRI's 50 years, the SRI Alumni Association was established to recognize former staff members whose professional contributions have had significant impact for staff, management, or clients.|
BusinessWeek dubbed SRI "Spin-off City"—an innovation engine that creates new businesses to capitalize on SRI technology developments and move them into the marketplace.
Curtis R. Carlson became SRI's president and chief executive officer.
|1996||SRI established the Gibson Achievement Award to honor staff members whose contributions have had a noteworthy impact on the standard of living and on the peace and prosperity of society.|
|2000||SRI Senior Technical Advisor Emeritus Dr. Doug Engelbart, inventor of the mouse and other foundations of personal computing, received the National Medal of Technology and Innovation—the U.S.' highest technology honor.|
|2007||With support of state and regional funds, SRI opened new research facilities in Harrisonburg, Virginia and St. Petersburg, Florida.|
SRI sold off its spin-off venture Siri to Apple.
|2011||SRI subsidiary Sarnoff Corporation, a leader in vision, video, and semiconductor technology innovations, was fully integrated into SRI on January 1.|
|2012||SRI has conducted more than $4 billion in R&D in the last decade.|
|2013||SRI has 2,300 employees at 20 locations.|
William Jeffrey became SRI's president and chief executive officer.
SRI's Phase 1 Clinical Trial and Strategic Development Services facility opened in Plymouth, Michigan.
|2015||To expand its capability to meet strategic U.S. Army needs, SRI established a facility in Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland.|