2006 Compensation: $31,430,000
Paul Jacobs took over as CEO of Qualcomm from his father, Irwin Jacobs, who founded Qualcomm in 1985. Irwin Jacobs still serves as chairman of the company.
Jacobs has held numerous engineering and management positions since joining Qualcomm fulltime in 1990 as a development engineer leading the cellphone digital signal processor software team. He brought considerable technical and operational experience to his role as CEO. Dr. Jacobs has been granted more than 25 patents for his inventions in the area of wireless technology.
One of Jacobs' positions at Qualcomm before taking over as CEO was running QCP, which developed and manufactured some of the wireless industry's first CDMA digital handsets in the 1990s. Qualcomm sold the handset business to Kyocera Wireless in 2000.