He was born in St. Louis, Mo., and came to Princeton after graduating from Evanston Township High in Evanston, Ill. At Princeton he majored in basic engineering and wrote his thesis on “An Analysis of Successful Labor Relations Policies.” He was a member of Quadrangle Club and was active in IAA competition.
After graduation Houghton reported to the Navy at Newport, R.I., where he spent four months in Officers’ Candidate School before being assigned to the Bureau of Weapons in Washington, D.C., where he spent three years in a procurement and engineering capacity involved in the Navy’s guided-missile programs. After discharge from the Navy, Houghton returned to the Chicago area and became a sales engineer with the Elgin National Watch Co. He went on to hold management positions with a wide array of organizations and finally with his own small business.
In retirement he was able to pursue an interest in golf and develop an extensive knowledge of Native American art, amassing a collection of traditional art objects and meeting with many artists.
Houghton was predeceased by his wife, Carolyn. He is survived by two sons, a grandson, and two granddaughters.