Howard Counts BIO

Howard CountsHoward A. Counts is a native Charlottean and holds a B.S. degree in Mathematics from Johnson C. Smith University where he graduated with honors. He has studied further in Statistics and Computer Science at the University of Georgia.

Howard has had an illustrious career having worked for IBM, the University of Georgia and Celanese Corporation. During his years at Celanese, Howard rose through the Information Technology organization from programmer analyst to Chief Information Officer managing thousands of people all over the world. He also spent six years developing marketing, business and environmental, health and safety strategies for the Acetate Division of Celanese. Howard traveled extensively during his career having spent time in on every continent except Antarctica planning for and implementing computer systems as well as presenting IT and business strategies. While at Celanese, Howard was best known for his out-of-the-box thinking, vision and ability to get the job done. Celanese was the direct beneficiary of many of his innovative ideas to make a more productive workplace in the competitive global textile market. Howard has had extensive experience with mergers, spin-offs and business start-ups from an Information Technology perspective.

In 2001, Howard founded ITS Consulting, a management consulting firm specializing in making its clients more efficient and cost effective through the use of technology. He was asked to start the company by Celanese’s senior management to complete a project he was implementing for them in Canada in tandem with KPMG, Hewlett Packard and Arinso International.

Howard is married to the former Stephanie Russell, an educator, school administrator, YWCA CEO and founder ow WIE.  They have one son, Jonathan, and is raising his grandson, Jaylin W. Counts. He is a member of Memorial Presbyterian Church in Charlotte where Howard has served as a Deacon and been Treasurer since 1994.

Howard has always believed in giving back to the community. He has mentored youth for many years through his affiliations with Kappa Alpha Psi, 100 Black Men of Charlotte, Sigma Pi Phi and the partnership between the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools and Celanese. In fact, not only was he a mentor and lunch pal to disadvantaged youth at the partner elementary school, but he developed a technology plan for the school, sold the concept for funding to Celanese management and oversaw the implementation to put 8–10 computers in each classroom with Internet access. Howard has also been very active in community sports programs having coached both youth baseball and basketball for over 14 years.

Howard has served on many boards and civic review committees including; Johnson C. Smith University Board of Trustees, Spirit Square for the Arts Board, Foundation for the Carolinas Board, the Mecklenburg County Computing Advisory Committee and the United Way Technology Advisory Committee. Recently, he was appointed by U.S. Congressman Mel Watt to serve on a Regional Economic Development Strategy Team to develop a strategy for nine counties in the Metrolina. This strategy is a direct result of the decline and/or closings of many manufacturing companies in the region. In addition, he has led fund raising efforts for the United Way, Arts and Science Council and the United Negro College Fund.

Howard enjoys golf and researching his ancestral heritage.