The idea of a Hall of Fame for the paper industry germinated in May 1992 when a group of current and former paper industry executives in Wisconsin’s Fox River Valley met to discuss how the importance of paper, and particularly some of the giants of the industry, could be recognized. They especially felt that the industry deserved recognition as the cornerstone of the Valley’s economy, and that of the world as well. Later in 1992, formal meetings were held with the Neenah Historical Society in Neenah, Wisconsin, USA, to develop the concept and format for the Paper Industry International Hall of Fame, Inc., which was formally registered with the Bureau of Patents and Trademarks in Washington, D.C., USA, in 1993. Annual ceremonies for inducting individuals to the Paper Industry International Hall of Fame began in 1995 with a slate of six honorees. In 1999 the Paper Industry International Hall of Fame, Inc. was offered Kimberly-Clark Corporation’s former Atlas Mill in Appleton, Wisconsin, USA, to serve as its home. Its size also provided the opportunity to adequately tell the story of paper. A portion of the renovated Atlas Mill opened in February of 2005 as the Paper Discovery Center, a paper-related science and technology museum, inside which is housed the Paper Industry International Hall of Fame that honors the esteemed paper industry honorees. Today the Paper Industry International Hall of Fame, Inc., a non-profit organization, continues to recognize people who have made preeminent contributions to the paper industry worldwide by inducting them into the Paper Industry International Hall of Fame and oversees the operation of the Paper Discovery Center. Its location in Appleton, Wisconsin, USA, is due to the fact the Fox River, running through the east-central part of the state, has the greatest concentration of paper mills in the world. Wisconsin also ranks number one in papermaking in the United States.
To celebrate all things paper – the wonder and the legacy.