AE alumnus Larry Howell to receive College of Engineering award
Howell earned three degrees from the University of Illinois in aeronautical and astronautical engineering: a B.S. ’66, an M.S. ’68, and a Ph.D. ’71. He met his wife Katherine when they were both undergraduate students at U of I.
He began his career at General Dynamics Corporation as a senior dynamics engineer and was a principal investigator on NASA contracts focused on the structural dynamics of the Space Shuttle.
Later, at General Motors, Howell was head of the engineering mechanics department in research and development. He was responsible for research in vehicle structures and materials, vehicle noise and vibration, vehicle aerodynamics, and vehicle safety including vehicle crashworthiness and occupant protection.
For many years, Howell was a member of GM’s safety sub-committee and eventually became Executive Director, Science, of General Motor’s R & D Center. In that position, he served as chief scientist for GM, overseeing the R & D Center’s six science labs. Howell had global responsibility for joint research with universities, government agencies, and GM’s Board of Directors on technology matters.
Howell retired from General Motors in 2001. Post-retirement, he has served as a consultant to industry and government, specializing in the management of research for business innovation, automotive technology, and vehicle structures and materials.
Over the years, Howell has served on both the University of Illinois and Western Michigan University, College of Engineering advisory boards. He was also a technology management consultant to industry, advising on vehicle telematics and electrification for John Deere, and he served on several studies of fuel economy for the National Research Council of the National Academy of Engineering.