Huntsman Alumni Magazine

Spring 2008

Huntsman's global business started as a small entrepreneurial firm

Jon Huntsman with Pope John Paul II
Jon Huntsman with Pope John Paul II

There was a time when Jon M. Huntsman, who was born in Blackfoot, Idaho, had to work three jobs to help support his family while his father earned his doctorate at Stanford.

He is now the founder and chairman of Huntsman Corporation, a global chemical manufacturer.

Huntsman with President Ronald Reagan

Huntsman with President Ronald Reagan

Twenty-seven years ago, Huntsman began a small entrepreneurial plastics packaging business, which is now a global manufacturer and marketer of differentiated chemicals. Originally known for pioneering innovations in packaging and, later, for rapid and integrated growth in petrochemicals, Huntsman today has 13,000 employees and operates from multiple locations worldwide. The company had 2006 revenues of more than $13 billion.

Huntsman with President Richard Nixon
Huntsman with President Richard Nixon

Huntsman earned his undergraduate degree at the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. He later earned an MBA from the University of Southern California. He has been awarded thirteen honorary doctorate degrees at various universities. Huntsman was a U.S. Naval gunnery officer and served under President Richard Nixon as special assistant to the president and as White House staff secretary.

Huntsman authored a book on corporate ethics entitled, Winners Never Cheat: Everyday Values We Learned as Children (But May Have Forgotten). In 2001, Huntsman was presented with Ernst & Young's Entrepreneur of the Year Award. In 2003, he received the Humanitarian of the Year Award from CNN's Larry King.

Jon and Karen Huntsman

Jon and Karen Huntsman

Huntsman and his wife, Karen, founded the Huntsman Cancer Institute in 1995 to accelerate the work of curing cancer through human genetics. The institute is now one of America's major cancer research centers dedicated to finding cures for cancer, as well as a state of the art clinic and treatment center for cancer patients.

Jon and Karen Huntsman are the parents of nine children and grandparents to 56.