Herbert Osborn was born March 19, 1856, at Lafayette, Wisconsin and died September 20, 1954, at Columbus, Ohio. Dr. Osborn received a B.S. (1879), M.S. (1880), and honorary Doctorate of Science (1916) degrees from Iowa State College. He received the L.L.D. degree (1930) from the University of Pittsburgh and the L.L.D. degree (1936) from The Ohio State University. Dr. Osborn was employed in various capacities as an entomologist at Iowa State College (1879-98). He was chairman of the Department of Zoology and Entomology at The Ohio State University (1898-1916). His reputation as an economic entomologist continued to grow and he attracted many graduate students from various parts of the world. Professor Osborn was appointed subsequently (1916-33) to a research professorship that provided more time for his own research and for advising and directing research of an ever increasing number of students. He was named emeritus professor in 1933 at Ohio State.
Professor Osborn's research interests were largely concerned with the taxonomy and biology of the Hemiptera, Anoplura, and Thysanoptera. He revised numerous genera and described many new species of Cecadellidae. A long list of insect species bear his name. He was author or coauthor of more than 500 publications.
Osborn was the recipient of many honors and awards. A charter member and one of the organizers of the American Association of Economic Entomologists, he was its tenth president (1898). He served also as President of the Iowa Academy of Sciences (1887), the Ohio Academy of Science (1904), the American Microscopical Society (1907-09), the former Entomological Society of America (1911), and the Society for the Promotion of Agricultural Science (1917-19). He was editor of the Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Sciences (1889-98), a vice-president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (1917), managing editor of the Annals of the Entomological Society of America (1908-29), and director of the Ohio Biological Survey (1912-54).