A career spanning 50 years, multiple industries

  • April 24, 2017
  • By Melody Walker
  • 1 minute read

“I’ve had a great career and I’ve enjoyed every year of it, every minute of it.” How many people can say that? Howard Wood, BSBA’47, started out as an accountant at Arthur Anderson…for 26 years. Then he wanted to see what it was like on “the other side of the desk” and partnered with fellow Olin alum Jerry Kent to manage a cable TV company called Cencom Cable Associates.

They sold Cencom to Hallmark Cards Inc. in 1991 for an estimated $1billion, bought it back from Hallmark in 1995, and renamed the company Charter Communications. Wood and Kent sold Charter to Paul Allen in 1998 for $4.5 billion, according to the St. Louis Business Journal.

Wood’s ventures in the cable and communications industry included more than $25 billion in acquisitions and launching startups which Wood says is not for everyone. “You can’t be too risk adverse,” he says about entrepreneurship, but adds he doesn’t think of himself as an entrepreneur. “I think we’ve been professional managers.”

Olin Alumni: Howard Wood

Howard reflects on his career and connections to Olin Business School.

About the Author

Melody Walker

Melody Walker

My nickname around the office is "Scoops" because I always have the latest news from the halls of Simon, Starbucks, or the STL startup scene. Thanks to staff and student bloggers, I'm not alone in reporting on the Olin community here on the Blog. Don't be shy, post a comment or send us your story. New bloggers always welcome!

Contact Us

For assistance in finding faculty experts, please contact Washington University Public Affairs.

Monday–Friday, 8:30 to 5 p.m.

Sara Savat, Senior News Director, Business and Social Sciences


Kurt Greenbaum,
Communications Director

Twitter: WUSTLnews