GETTING TO KNOW US
Dr. David Howard
Executive Director & Fellow
Dr. David Howard has been with TowerJazz since joining Rockwell in Newport Beach, CA in 1997, followed by Conexant and Jazz Semiconductor. He has also held positions at IMEC and SEMATECH, and helped form the first ITRS Roadmap for MEMS.
Q. Please tell us about your position, focus areas, etc.
A. My role is to help drive new technology development and business opportunities from idea to demonstration and production.
My work contribution can be individual, but is primarily collaborative and cross-functional. It involves projects run out of the business units (BUs) or R&D with the fab, across groups, across sites, and of course involves developing business with customers and other industry partners (vendors, universities, and fabs). Project scope can involve tools, processes, devices, products, and business relations, working with the excellent people involved in each project.
My focus is to enable TowerJazz to have technological advantages, enhanced capabilities and product differentiation, with good margin, through the execution of very specific customer programs. These mostly fall under the RF/HPA and our Aerospace & Defense BUs.
Current areas of focus are:
- Getting our infrared process line to production and leveraging our partnership with FLIR
- Helping TowerJazz to gain a leadership position in RF technology through executing various technological developments, partnerships and demonstrations in RF SOI, SiGe, and even MEMS
- Seeking new technology initiatives, funding, and customers synergistic with our Commercial technical roadmap, often through our Aerospace & Defense customer base
- Taking part in some F3 duties involving our patent portfolio, and our new Technical Education Seminar (TES) series, which allow me to interact with clever engineers.
Q. What do you enjoy about your position and what challenges you?
A. I like the variation, the ownership. I especially enjoy the deeper interactions with individuals or teams that come from shared experience. I have some freedom and trust from above and around me. When helping to develop new business technology strategies, I believe the criteria should be greater and harder than the criteria necessary to approve “tweaks” to existing business technology…so choosing what new things to do, gaining consensus, and maintaining our focus will continue be a significant challenge, but when successful, it is ever-sweet! For example, having helped establish CMOS, SiGe and SOI has been good for us. Also the DARPA, US Army & Air Force programs have been good for the Newport Beach fab and our technical roadmap.
Q: What is your focus this year from a business standpoint?
- FLIR production deliveries, revenue
- New RF programs, key deliveries to our top customer
- Assisting with aggressive technological demonstrations and “firsts” for TowerJazz, e.g. achieving 20dB improvement in some RF switch metrics.
Q. What are some of your hobbies?
A: In addition to my job and my kids, I’m a fan of sports, especially soccer. I also like building things, backpacking, sharing meals. I am experimenting with golf.
Q: What is your favorite travel destination?
A: I lived in Belgium for a while, and have traveled in Europe and Asia. But, I have roots in Boston, MA and Vermont where I enjoy trout fishing, skiing, forest and family. More recently, I’ve been backpacking with friends in the mountains of the Sierra Nevada for vistas and shared peak experiences. But, any place with good food, good people and good cheer is nice.