BSc Lond 1890, MB 1894, DSc 1909; MB ChB Manch 1893; FRCS Eng 1905; FRS 1930.
Stephenson began his career in medicine, but later became well known as a zoologist. He was born in Padiham, Lancashire on 6 February 1871 and was educated at Burnley Grammar School and Owens College where he gained a number of academic distinctions. He held house appointments at MRI and the Royal Chest Hospital London before serving in the Indian Medical Service from 1895 until 1906. In 1906 he was asked to temporarily fill a new chair of biology at the Government College, Lahore. This position became the turning point in his career, and he built up a leading school of zoology. He was appointed principal of the College in 1912 and in 1918 was made vice-chancellor of Punjab University. In 1919 Stephenson returned to England and became lecturer in zoology at Edinburgh University, a position he held until 1927 when he was made a Carnegie Teaching Fellow. Stephenson retired to London in 1929, but continued his zoological research as an unofficial worker in the National History Museum, and was zoological secretary of the Linnean Society. Stephenson died of a heart attack on 2 February 1933.