Find a Member:

1985 Horatio Alger Award Winner

Allen E. Paulson*

Chairman Emeritus, Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation
Paulson Enterprises

"I never met a lucky lazy person."

Allen Paulson was born in 1922 on a farm in Clinton, Iowa. On his own at 13, he supported himself by selling newspapers and cleaning a hotel's lobby and restrooms. At 15, a winning lottery ticket enabled him to buy a bus ticket to California, where he worked on a dairy farm while attending school. After graduating from high school, he moved to West Virginia in 1941. He worked at least two jobs at a time while studying engineering. During World War II, he served with the Army Air Corps and then returned to TWA as a flight engineer. In 1952, he formed California Airmotive, which eventually became Learjet's main distributor. In 1978, he created the modern Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation by combining Rockwell's general aviation division with the Grumman Aerospace corporate jet division.

* Deceased