Distinguished Alumni, Hall of Fame 2015
Thomas R. McPherson, Jr.
Thomas R. McPherson Jr. is a successful entrepreneur who founded and led several successful high-tech companies. These efforts resulted in one IPO and two mergers. He held executive positions at Hughes Network Systems, Bay Networks and Nortel. Tom currently serves on several boards while pursuing his interest in golf, aviation and international travel.
McPherson played a leadership role in successfully establishing companies such as Picture Element Limited, Network Equipment Technologies, Rapid City Communications, Hatteras Networks, Inc., and most recently as CEO of Cognio, Inc., which was sold to Cisco.
McPherson is a 2004 Distinguished Engineering Alumnus and served as the first chairman of the Engineering Entrepreneurs Program Advisory Committee. He has also delivered NC State’s Entrepreneurs’ Lecture. He established the McPherson Family Distinguished Professorship in support of Engineering Entrepreneurship.
In addition to earning his BS EE and MS EE from the NC State College of Engineering, he received his BS in physics from Davidson College and his Engineer’s Degree from George Washington University.
McPherson resides in North Carolina with his wife Kathy where they enjoy a view of the renown Pinehurst No. 2. He is Chairman of the Given Tufts in Pinehurst and serves on the NC State Engineering Foundation as immediate past President.