Howard Frank

Professor and Former Dean

Decision, Operations & Information Technologies
Ph.D., Northwestern University

Howard Frank was dean of the University of Maryland′s Robert H. Smith School of Business from 1997-2008. Frank is currently a professor of management science in the school's decision, operations and information technologies department. Frank led the transformation of the school's curriculum and research agenda, integrating core business disciplines with such subjects as information technology, supply chain management and e-commerce. Today, the Smith School is recognized as a world leader in management education and research for a global economy powered by technology and entrepreneurship.

Frank is widely recognized as a world-class information technology expert whose accomplishments include fundamental contributions to the development of the Internet. He has been a member of the board of directors of nine telecommunications and computer companies and has experience in the venture capital and mergers and acquisitions fields, having led the acquisition or sale of a number of companies.

Franks accomplishments in the public sector include:

  • Director of the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency's Information Technology Office, where he managed a $300 million annual budget aimed at advancing the frontiers of information technology. In this capacity, he administered over $1 billion of research contracts with the nation's leading universities and companies.
  • Founding director of the Defense Department's Advanced Information Technology Services Joint Program Office, established to transfer advanced technologies into operational defense systems. He chaired the Administration's Technology Policy Working Group and he had a significant role in national technology policy in such areas as high definition television and adoption of commercial standards for government procurement.
  • Member of the Committee on Information, Computing and Communications of the White House's National Science and Technology Council. Frank was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal by the Secretary of Defense (the Defense Department's highest civilian honor) for his contributions during his four years at DARPA.
  • Visiting consultant within the Executive Office of the President of the United States in charge of its network analysis activities.

Franks accomplishments in the private sector include:

  • Founder, Chairman and CEO of Network Management Inc.
  • President and CEO of Contel Information Systems (a subsidiary of Contel Corporation).
  • President, CEO and founder of the Network Analysis Corporation.

Frank is:

  • A member of the board of directors of the AACSB and president of the Mid-Atlantic Association of Colleges of Business Administration and Vice Chancellor for the Americas of the International Academy of Management.
  • A member of the Advisory Board of Carnegie Mellon's Heinz School.
  • A member of the Executive Committee of the Global Technology and Management Consortium.
  • Fellow of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS).
  • Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers, and a recipient of its 1999 Eric Sumner Award.
  • A member of the National Academy of Engineering.
  • A member of the Strategy Council of the Washington Board of Trade.
  • A member of the Board of Directors of the Macklin Institute of Montgomery College.
  • A member of the Federal Advisory Committee of the National Institute of Standards and Technology's Advanced Technology Program.
  • Senior Fellow at the Wharton School's SEI Center for Advanced Studies in Management and currently serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the Center.

Frank is a prolific author, having written over 190 articles and chapters in books on technology and the management of technology. He has been a member of seven editorial boards and a featured speaker at hundreds of business and professional meetings.

Frank was an adjunct professor of decision sciences at the Wharton School and an associate professor of electrical engineering and computer sciences at the University of California at Berkeley. He received his MS and PhD from Northwestern University and his BSEE from the University of Miami (Florida).

Distinguished globally, Frank and his wife, Dr. Jane Frank (an adjunct professor at Smith), have the largest and best collection of fantasy and science fiction art. They have published two books, "Great Fantasy Art Themes from the Frank Collection" and  "The Frank Collection," showcasing their world-class collection. (Purchase the Frank′s books via the links above to, where the referral fees support Smith School scholarships.)