Richard (Dick) Morley was considered the "father" of the programmable logic controller (PLC) since he was involved with the production of the first PLC for General Motors, the Modicon, at Bedford and Associates in 1968. The Modicon brand of PLC is now owned by Schneider Electric. The PLC has been recognized as a significant advancement in the practice of automation, and has an important influence on manufacturing industry.
An inventor, machinist, author, consultant and engineer, his peers have acknowledged his contributions with numerous awards from groups such as Inc. magazine, the Franklin Institute, the Society of Manufacturing Engineers and the Engineering Society of Detroit . He has also been inducted into the Manufacturing Hall of Fame.
The Society of Manufacturing Engineers offers the Richard E. Morley Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineer Award for outstanding technical accomplishments in the manufacturing profession by engineers age 35 and under.
Mr. Morley works out of his barn in New Hampshire where he and his wife have been home to 40 foster children.
- 2016 Control System Integrators Association (CSIA) Lifetime Achievement Award
- 2007–2008 SME Manufacturing Enterprise Council Member
- 2006–2008 NH Judge - Hi Tech Council Product of the Year
- 2006 Process Automation Hall of Fame (Control magazine)
- 2005 SME Board of Directors
- 1996 Automation Hall of Fame Prometheus Award
- 1995 SME Fellow
- 1993 Parallel Processor Design — Flavors
- 1991 Howard N. Potts Medal
- 1990 Entrepreneur of the Year
- 1981 Gould Science & Engineering Fellow
- Boeing Technical Excellence Award
- "Dick Morley - 'Father of the Programmable Logic Controller' ", The Extension, vol 4 issue 2, March-April 2003
- http://www.sme.org/cgi-bin/get-press.pl?&&20100019&PR&&SME& 2010 SME Richard E. Morley Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineer Award Recipients Announced