Edwin Turney

Last updated

Edwin James Turney (March 26, 1929, Brooklyn, New York - October 15, 2008 [1] ) is best known as one of the founders of Advanced Micro Devices serving as the Vice President of Sales and Administration from 1969 to 1974.


Early life

Ed Turney was born in Brooklyn, New York. His early years were spent in Ridgewood and later in Huntington, Long Island. At the age of 18, he enlisted in the US Navy where he received his first training in electronics. Turney graduated 3rd in his class from the U.S. Naval School, Electronics Technicians at the U.S. Naval Training Center in Great Lakes, Illinois.


After leaving the Navy, Turney worked for a brief time back on his native Long Island for the Long Island Lighting Company. His next stop was at Philco as a TechRep Field Engineer.

Turney's career took off when, in 1969, he joined Fairchild Semiconductor as Sales Engineer. Within two years, he was promoted to Director of Sales and Marketing, Computer Market based in corporate headquarters, Silicon Valley, California.

In 1969 Fairchild Semiconductor was taken over by Motorola management. This was the impetus for the founding of Advanced Micro Devices (AMD).

AMD was founded by Jerry Sanders, John Carey, Sven Simonsen, Ed Turney, Jack Gifford and three members of Gifford's team, Frank Botte, Jim Giles and Larry Stenger.

As Vice President, Sales and Administration, Turney was responsible for worldwide sales, purchasing, material, customer service, plus numerous diversified administrative and contractual functions. Under Turney's reign, sales grew incrementally at 20% per quarter to approximately $65,000,000 from first production in April 1970 through December 1974.

Ed Turney's next position was as Vice President, Worldwide Marketing and Sales at Electronic Arrays. In Turney's two-year stint from 1974 to 1976 he increased sales from $6M to $22M propelling the company into becoming the world's largest Read-Only Memory manufacturer at the time. The company was subsequently acquired by NEC of Japan.

In December, 1976, Ed joined Intersil as Vice President, Worldwide Marketing and Sales. He had been solicited by the Board Chairmen of both companies at the time of acquisition of Intersil by Advanced Memory Systems to integrate sales and marketing for the combined companies and to formulate and execute consolidated business plans. Turney developed and implemented a multi-year, award-winning advertising campaign to create a new image for the company. He received the EFFIE Award, given for the most effective advertising commercials. At that time, Intersil was the only semiconductor company in the nation to have received the award.


Turney died on October 15, 2008, of brain cancer at age 79. He was buried on October 18 at the Gate of Heaven Cemetery, 22555 Cristo Rey Drive, Los Altos. He is buried in St. Theresa’s Court next to his mother, Rose. [1]

Related Research Articles

Advanced Micro Devices American multinational semiconductor company

Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (AMD) is an American multinational semiconductor company based in Santa Clara County, California that develops computer processors and related technologies for business and consumer markets. While initially it manufactured its own processors, the company later outsourced its manufacturing, a practice known as going fabless, after GlobalFoundries was spun off in 2009. AMD's main products include microprocessors, motherboard chipsets, embedded processors and graphics processors for servers, workstations, personal computers and embedded system applications.

Intel American semiconductor chip manufacturer

Intel Corporation is an American multinational corporation and technology company headquartered in Santa Clara, California, in Silicon Valley. It is the world's largest and highest valued semiconductor chip manufacturer based on revenue, and is the inventor of the x86 series of microprocessors, the processors found in most personal computers (PCs). Intel ranked No. 46 in the 2018 Fortune 500 list of the largest United States corporations by total revenue. Intel is incorporated in Delaware.

Microprocessor Computer processor contained on an integrated-circuit chip

A microprocessor is a computer processor that incorporates the functions of a central processing unit on a single integrated circuit (IC), or sometimes up to 8 integrated circuits. The microprocessor is a multipurpose, clock driven, register based, digital integrated circuit that accepts binary data as input, processes it according to instructions stored in its memory and provides results as output. Microprocessors contain both combinational logic and sequential digital logic. Microprocessors operate on numbers and symbols represented in the binary number system.

Robert Noyce American businessman and engineer

Robert Norton Noyce, nicknamed "the Mayor of Silicon Valley," was an American physicist who co-founded Fairchild Semiconductor in 1957 and Intel Corporation in 1968. He is also credited with the realization of the first monolithic integrated circuit or microchip, which fueled the personal computer revolution and gave Silicon Valley its name.

National Semiconductor was an American semiconductor manufacturer which specialized in analog devices and subsystems, formerly with headquarters in Santa Clara, California, United States. The company produced power management integrated circuits, display drivers, audio and operational amplifiers, communication interface products and data conversion solutions. National's key markets included wireless handsets, displays and a variety of broad electronics markets, including medical, automotive, industrial and test and measurement applications.

Fairchild Semiconductor American company

Fairchild Semiconductor International, Inc. was an American semiconductor company based in San Jose, California. Founded in 1957 as a division of Fairchild Camera and Instrument, it became a pioneer in the manufacturing of transistors and of integrated circuits. Schlumberger bought the firm in 1979 and sold it to National Semiconductor in 1987; Fairchild was spun off as an independent company again in 1997. In September 2016, Fairchild was acquired by ON Semiconductor.

Federico Faggin Italian physicist and electrical engineer

Federico Faggin is an Italian-American physicist, engineer, inventor and entrepreneur. He is best known for designing the first commercial microprocessor, the Intel 4004. He led the 4004 (MCS-4) project and the design group during the first five years of Intel's microprocessor effort. Faggin also created, while working at Fairchild Semiconductor in 1968, the self-aligned MOS (metal–oxide–semiconductor) silicon-gate technology (SGT), which made possible MOS semiconductor memory chips, CCD image sensors, and the microprocessor. After the 4004, he led development of the Intel 8008 and 8080, using his SGT methodology for random logic chip design, which was essential to the creation of early Intel microprocessors. He was co-founder and CEO of Zilog, the first company solely dedicated to microprocessors, and led the development of the Zilog Z80 and Z8 processors. He was later the co-founder and CEO of Cygnet Technologies, and then Synaptics.

Traitorous eight Group of Shockley Semiconductor employees who left to found Fairchild Semiconductor

The traitorous eight was a group of eight employees who left Shockley Semiconductor Laboratory in 1957 to found Fairchild Semiconductor. William Shockley had in 1956 recruited a group of young PhD graduates with the goal to develop and produce new semiconductor devices. While Shockley had received a Nobel Prize in Physics and was an experienced researcher and teacher, his management of the group was authoritarian and unpopular. This was accentuated by Shockley's research focus not proving fruitful. After the demand for Shockley to be replaced was rebuffed, the eight left to form their own company.

Walter Jeremiah Sanders III is an American businessman and is a co-founder and was a long-time CEO of the American semiconductor manufacturer Advanced Micro Devices (AMD).

Hector Ruiz Mexican businessman

Hector de Jesus Ruiz Cardenas is the chairman and CEO of [ Advanced Nanotechnology Solutions, Inc.] and former CEO & executive chairman of semiconductor company Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (AMD).

Vinod Dham is an engineer, entrepreneur and venture capitalist. He is known as 'Father of the Pentium Chip' for his contribution to the development of Intel's Pentium micro-processor He is a mentor, advisor and sits on the boards of companies, including startups funded through his India-based fund Indo-US Venture Partners, where he is the founding managing director.

Bob Widlar American electrical engineer

Robert John Widlar was an American electronics engineer and a designer of linear integrated circuits (ICs).

John Haslett Hall was a pioneer in the development of low power CMOS integrated circuits. Hall was a pioneering semiconductor process and device design expert. He founded or co-founded multiple innovative Silicon Valley companies, including Intersil, MicroPower Systems, Linear Integrated Systems, Inc., and Integrated Wave Technologies, Inc.

Semiconductor Industry Association trade association

The Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) is a trade association and lobbying group founded in 1977 that represents the United States semiconductor industry. It is located in Washington, D.C.

Silicon Hills Tech hub in Texas, United States

Silicon Hills is a nickname for the cluster of high-tech companies in the Austin metropolitan area in the U.S. state of Texas. The name is analogous to Silicon Valley, but refers to the hilly terrain on the west side of Austin. High tech industries in the area include enterprise software, semiconductors, corporate R&D, biotechnology, the video game industry, and a variety of startup companies.

Ze'ev Drori is an Israeli-born American technology entrepreneur currently residing in California. Drori was the founder and Chief Executive of Monolithic Memories, before the company merged with Advanced Micro Devices (AMD). He helped engineer the turnaround of struggling electric carmaker Tesla Motors as President and CEO from 2007 to 2008.

Jack Gifford American businessman

John "Jack" F. Gifford was an American engineer and businessman best known as a founder and former CEO, President and Chairman of the Board of Maxim Integrated Products, an analog semiconductor company, located in San Jose, California. He served as the company's CEO until his retirement in 2007.

Bruce Claflin is an American businessman and board member of the American semiconductor company Advanced Micro Devices and director of Ciena, a global supplier of telecommunications networking equipment, software, and services.

Lisa Su American electrical engineer and CEO of AMD (born 1969)

Lisa Su is a Taiwanese American business executive and electrical engineer, who is the CEO and president of Advanced Micro Devices (AMD). Early in her career, Su worked at Texas Instruments, IBM, and Freescale Semiconductor in engineering and management positions. She is known for her work developing silicon-on-insulator semiconductor manufacturing technologies and more efficient semiconductor chips during her time as vice president of IBM's Semiconductor Research and Development Center.


  1. 1 2 Steven Schwankert (2008-10-17). "AMD co-founder Turney dies". Network World. Archived from the original on 2012-04-02.

Further reading