Starkey Timeline

1967

1967

In August of 1967, Bill Austin purchased Starkey Labs in Minnesota from Harold Starkey for $13,000.

1976

1976

Starkey opens its first subsidiary in Manchester, England. Over the next five years, Starkey opened facilities in Toronto, Canada; Glencoe, Minnesota; Hamburg, Germany and Paris, France. Starkey now operates more than 25 facilities and works in more than 100 markets globally.

1977

1977

Austin creates the CARE program, a comprehensive series of booklets and videos that promotes the benefits of improved hearing. This work would later develop into national hearing healthcare plans.

1982

1982

Starkey releases the CE-5 series, the industry’s first canal hearing aids.

1983

1983

President Ronald Reagan is fit with Starkey INTRA hearing aids, encouraging a wider acceptance of hearing aids among the general public and boosting sales in the industry. Reagan was one of five U.S. Presidents fit with Starkey hearing aids.

1984

1984

Bill and his wife, Tani Austin, start Starkey Hearing Foundation to provide hearing health resources and the gift of hearing around the world. Together with thousands of global volunteers, they would eventually serve communities in more than 100 countries.

1994

1994

Starkey introduces the first Completely-In-Canal (CIC) hearing aid.

1999

1999

Starkey enters the digital age with the release of the Cetera and Aries digital hearing systems. Both instruments take a research-based approach to amplification.

2000

2000

The inaugural “So The World May Hear” Awards Gala is held, helping Starkey Hearing Foundation raise donations for international hearing missions. Through the years, the gala was attended by celebrities, humanitarians and dignitaries like Elton John and President Bill Clinton.

2002

2002

The Starkey Hearing Alliance network is established to offer a unique blend of technology and patient care while providing “Better Hearing with a Human Touch.”

2002

2002

Bill Austin is awarded the Albert Schweitzer Leadership Award from the Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership Foundation, given to individuals who are distinguished leaders in service and providing leadership opportunities to young people.

2004

2004

First William F. Austin Scholarship awarded to five students.

2007

2007

Bill Austin is awarded the Heroes Among Us Award from PEOPLE Magazine for his work giving the gift of hearing with Starkey Hearing Foundation.

2011

2011

Starkey is awarded the Jefferson Award for Outstanding Public Service by a Corporation.

2012

2012

Bill and Tani Austin are honored by His Holiness the Dalai Lama after a Starkey hearing mission in India.

2014

2014

Bill Austin is honored with the Twin Cities International Citizen Award.

2015

2015

Starkey Hearing Institute is opened in Lusaka, Zambia to provide education and hearing healthcare resources to local communities.

2017

2017

Bill Austin receives the First Goodwill Global Ambassador Award for Ear and Hearing Health by the International Federation for Peace & Sustainable Development at the United Nations.

2018

2018

Bill and Tani Austin are honored with a Lifetime Achievement award from the Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing.

2020

2020

Starkey revolutionizes the hearing aid with the release of Livio Edge AI – the world’s first hearing aid with artificial intelligence and integrated sensors to track brain and body activity, offering real-time language translation and advanced environmental detection.

2021

2021

Austin celebrates 60 years in the hearing industry, and Minnesota Governor Tim Walz declares February 10th, 2021, “William F. Austin & Starkey Day.”

2021

2021

To continue its long history of philanthropy, Starkey launches Starkey Cares, a corporate social responsibility arm to provide hearing help for the global community, employees and for first responders and healthcare workers.