Dr Humphreys was born on 2 February 1942 in Wyandotte, Michigan, U.S.A., and was raised in a scientifically aware but non–Christian household. Not surprisingly, Russell himself always had a love for science, and in 1959, he was one of the 40 winners of the Westinghouse National Science Talent Search.
He received a B.S. degree in physics at Duke University, 1959–1963. After this, he moved to Louisiana State University (LSU) to study postgraduate physics. In 1969, while doing his dissertation research for LSU in the mountains of Colorado, he committed his life to Christ. In 1972, he was awarded a Ph.D. in physics, on cosmic rays and ultrahigh energy nucleon–nucleon interactions, by which time he was a fully convinced creationist due to both the biblical and scientific evidence. For the next 6 years he worked in the High Voltage Laboratory of General Electric Company, designing and inventing equipment and researching high–voltage phenomena. While there, he received a U.S. patent and one of Industrial Research Magazine’s IR–100 awards.
Dr Humphreys has been married since 1963, and they have three children.