North Central College - Naperville, IL

J. Guy Woodward

Class Year: 
1936

Physics major

How many of the scientists who have shaped our world can you identify? Here’s a few — all Nobel laureates: Harold Varmus. John Mather. Peter Agre. And their schools? Small liberal arts colleges.

At a time when new sound and recording technologies were changing the entertainment world, J. Guy Woodward was making his mark at RCA Laboratories in Princeton, NJ. He graduated from a small liberal arts college — North Central College, in Naperville, Illinois — with a bachelor’s degree in physics, went on to earn a doctorate from Ohio State University. At RCA he was involved in exploring and developing a variety of emerging technologies, including vehicular radio transmission, underwater sound, electromechanical feedback devices, musical acoustics, stereophonic reproduction, disc-phonograph recording, magnetic tape recording and digital magnetic tape recording.

In 1953, Woodward was part of team which publicly demonstrated video tape recording of television signals in color and black-and-white. Over his 40-year career at RCA, his research led to seven patents.