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John Terry

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Information about John Terry

Profile image of John Terry

Profession

Category:
ScienceMakers
Occupation(s):
Technology Entrepreneur
Electrical Engineer

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Steak
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Costa Rica
Favorite Quote:
I came. I saw. I conquered.

Birthplace

Born:
9/29/1966
Birth Location:
Norfolk, Virginia

Profession

Category:
ScienceMakers
Occupation(s):
Technology Entrepreneur
Electrical Engineer

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Steak
Favorite Time of Year:
Spring
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Costa Rica
Favorite Quote:
I came. I saw. I conquered.

Birthplace

Born:
9/29/1966
Birth Location:
Norfolk
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Biography

Technology entrepreneur and electrical engineer John Terry was born on September 29, 1966 in Norfolk, Virginia. He grew up with his mother, Deborah Kathleen Terry, and his grandparents in the Liberty Park public housing project in Norfolk with his two younger siblings. Terry dreamed of becoming a professional basketball player. However, he could not stay on the school team because he had to work to help support his family. His high school guidance counselor helped him win a scholarship to Old Dominion University where he earned his B.S. degree in electrical engineering in 1988.

After graduation, he moved to Cleveland, Ohio to work at the NASA Lewis Research Center. He was an experimental research engineer whose work focused on satellite communications. Terry connected his signal processing undergraduate research with his NASA communications research for his master's degree on array signal processing, also known as MIMO technology. While working at NASA, Terry attended graduate school and earned his M.S. degree from Cleveland State University in 1993. After NASA, Terry worked at Texas Instruments as a satellite systems engineer in 1995. Next, he attended the Georgia Institute of Technology and received his Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering and research in 1999.

Terry started working at the Nokia Corporation's Research Center in Dallas, Texas just before he finished his Ph.D. degree. He worked his way up and eventually became one of Nokia's principal scientists where he worked to improve Nokia’s wireless service. In 2001, Terry founded his own company, Terry Consultants, Incorporated (TCI). The company specializes in helping businesses develop and apply new wireless technologies. Terry owns or co-owns more than seventeen issued and pending patents. In 2004, he spent a year as director of WiQuest Communications for baseband systems engineering and in 2005, he co-founded Witivity, which helps customer's use of broadband wireless technology.

Terry has published two books, Blind Adaptive Array Techniques for Mobile Satellite Communications (1999) and OFDM Wireless LANs: A Theoretical and Practical Guide (2001, with Juha Heiskala). He has received a number of awards including the 2002 Black Engineer of the Year Award for Outstanding Technical Contribution in an Industry. He has published several articles and taught classes at Southern Methodist University, the Georgia Institute of Technology and the University of Technology in Helsinki, Finland. Terry has also been very active in the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineering (IEEE). Terry and his wife, Barbara Terry, reside in Virginia. They have three sons, Amiel, William, and Shalamar and one granddaughter, Arianna.

John Terry was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on August 13, 2007.

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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of John Terry's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - John Terry shares his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - John Terry talks about his mother's side of the family, part 1
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - John Terry talks about his mother's side of the family, part 2
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - John Terry talks about his father
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - John Terry talks about his grandfather
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - John Terry recalls his childhood memories
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - John Terry describes some church experiences
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - John Terry remembers early troubles in school
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - John Terry describes his childhood friends and his elementary school
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - John Terry talks about attending integrated schools
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - John Terry describes the early computers
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - John Terry talks about his first two jobs, as a paper boy and at a neighbor's candy shop
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - John Terry remembers the men he knew in his neighborhood
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - John Terry talks about Lake Taylor Senior High School
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - John Terry talks about how experience on the basketball court taught him valuable life lessons
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - John Terry talks about the politics of basketball and his high school experience
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - John Terry recounts his awkwardness as a teenager
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - John Terry talks about how he continued to push himself academically which led to him being hired at NASA
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - John Terry describes how he was admitted to Old Dominion University
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - John Terry talks about his brother's feeling of competitiveness and inferiority
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - John Terry describes his experience at Old Dominion University
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - John Terry talks about his graduate work and NASA
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - John Terry describes his research about signal processing and satellite communications, part 1
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - John Terry describes his research about signal processing and satellite communications, part 2
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - John Terry explains wireless communication and matching electronic signatures between electronic devices and satellites
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - John Terry describes his early jobs at Texas Instruments and at Nokia Corporation
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - John Terry describes leaving Nokia for a start-up company
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - John Terry talks about starting his consulting business, part 1
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - John Terry talks about starting his consulting business, part 2
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - John Terry discusses why he did not want to use venture capital to fund his company
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - John Terry shares his plans for the future
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - John Terry talks about his heroes in the black business world
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - John Terry describes his hopes and concerns for the black community
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - John Terry describes his legacy
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - John Terry shares about his wife, son, and how he would like to be remembered