James R. Messenger - Biography
James R. Messenger was affectionately known around the world for many years as “Mr. Network” in being a leading authority on the AT&T Worldwide Intelligent Network, where he served as head of AT&T’s premier customer visitor center in Bedminster, New Jersey. He and his staff taught both The Theory of the Information Age and Principles of Digital Network Management to the world’s leadership in telecommunications, Information Technology, business, government, education, and other fields.
Besides conceiving The Theory of the Information Age, James R. Messenger’s varied career includes serving as a producer of the first intercity television broadcast via laser beam over fiber optic cable; being the executive producer of the first coast-to-coast high definition television broadcast featuring David Crosby in Los Angeles and Graham Nash in Atlanta; winning the Public Relations Society of America’s “Corporate Identity Award” twice, for Exxon Corporation and AT&T; being an Emmy winner for “The Taj Mahal,” which Indira Gandhi called a lasting legacy of India; being nominated for two Academy Awards for “OF TIME, TOMBS, AND TREASURE: The Treasures of Tutankhamun” and “Koryo Celadon;” and being the on-camera host for some of the world’s first global video Webcasts during the SuperComm telecommunications trade show, during which he interviewed Nobel Prize Winner Arno Penzias and other industry leaders.
In 2002, he published “The next step in the creation of the Information Age: Moving to Broadband” in Telephony Magazine Online, which included a brief history of the Information Age, and issued the analysis “Broadband and Hollywood” the same year. He has published in Reader’s Digest, American Cinematographer, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and the Marietta Daily Journal, among others.
In 1984, Messenger traveled 18,000 miles across America with the Olympic Torch Relay while making his film portrait of America, “Carry the Fire,” where he looked upon the faces of 30-50 million Americans and spoke with many thousands. His work has included filming President Ronald Reagan at the White House, Dr. Henry Kissinger; and other notables.
He spent nearly 20 years with AT&T and Lucent Technologies, retiring in 2001.
Messenger has an A.B.J., in Journalism (with a double major in Computer Science), 1970, from the University of Georgia, and an M.B.A., 1994, Georgia State University, where he is a Past-President of the Executive MBA Alumni Club. He has also served as an Adjunct Professor at Kennesaw State University.
In 1994, he privately issued The Creation and Birth of the Information Age, a description of the methodology he applied and a collection of the primary documents he used in his work in creating the Information Age.
Jim Messenger with Professor Stephen Hawking, Centennial of the American Physical Society, Atlanta, March 1999 (Photograph by John Bacon)