Larry K. Wilson served in a large number of IEEE offices, including Vice President of Member and Geographic Activities (MGA), before his untimely death in 1983 at the age of 49. His service characterized the dedicated volunteer on which IEEE depends for its work.
Larry received the BSEE and MSEE degrees from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1955 and 1959. He served in the United States Navy after graduation and joined Sperry Microwave Electronics in 1959 where he was involved in the early development of microwave ferrite devices. He received the PhD from Vanderbilt University and joined the faculty there in 1964. He became Professor of Electrical Engineering in 1973 and served as Chair of the Division of Electrical and Computing Sciences from 1972 to 1975. As a faculty member, he taught courses in electronics, microwaves, and solid state. His activities in research included work in microwave integrated circuits and amorphous magnetic materials.
In IEEE, Larry served in many of the offices of the Nashville Section, including Chair, and also as Chair of the Huntsville Chapter of the Microwave Theory and Techniques Society. He served as Area 5 Chair for Region 3 and was elected Region 3 Director for 1976-77. He was a member of USAB in 1976-77 and again in 1982-83. In 1980-81, he was Vice President of Member and Geographic Activities. He also served as the IEEE representative on the International Affairs Council of the American Association of Engineering Societies and on technical committees for the MTT Society and for the Magnetics Society.
In 1979, Larry set up and conducted the first Student Professional Awareness Conference (S-PAC) at Vanderbilt University, a model soon promoted throughout IEEE. In 1981, his efforts resulted in the founding of POTENTIALS, the student magazine of IEEE.
Throughout his IEEE career, Larry supported student activities and rallied support for them at every level of the Institute. While he served at the IEEE level, he developed a sustained interest in the transnational activities of IEEE. In recognition of his work, two annual awards have been established. The Larry K. Wilson Transnational Award is given by MGA to honor "the most innovative activity related to Regions 7, 8, 9, and 10 that best exemplifies the transnational goals" of IEEE. The Larry K. Wilson Regional Student Activities Award honors a student in each Region for "an extraordinary accomplishment" in student activities.