Charles K. Watt, Ph.D.

Dr Charles K Watt

Dr. Watt currently is a professor at Clemson University and chairs the University’s Watt Family Innovation Center Board of Advisors

He provided leadership for development and initial operation of this new center and prior to stepping down as its Founding Director, he served as Dean of the University’s College of Business and Behavioral Science. Additionally, he continues to serve as a board member or consultant for several advanced technology private as well as public organizations.  Before retiring from industry, he founded and provided initial leadership for Watt Systems Engineering and Scientific Research Corporation. He subsequently formed Electronic Systems Support Company, a small business organized under the laws of South Carolina.   

His College of Business and Behavioral Science duties included providing leadership in formulating educational policy and serving as the collegiate faculty’s agent in execution of academic programs. Among other duties, he reviewed departmental recommendations for appointment, renewal, promotion, tenure and termination and provided periodic performance evaluations of department chairs, school directors and staff.

Research and management activities at other organizations have ranged from analysis, modeling, and conceptual research to the development of highly complex systems.  While serving as an Executive in the Office of Secretary of Defense, Dr. Watt’s responsibilities included: (1) management of global test range resources; (2) preparation and submission of assessment reports on major weapon systems requiring a decision by the Secretary of Defense; and (3) direction of joint service research, development and test programs.  Navy Department experience has included providing leadership and technical direction for major defense electronic organizations as well as completing special assignments for the U.S. Congressional Office of Technology Assessment. 

Earlier in his career, Dr. Watt worked for the Bell System, where he formed a unique task force to expedite development of the Navy's first fully automated secure communication switching system.  He began his engineering career in 1959 with Bendix Corporation, where one of his early accomplishments was development of an accurate phase tracking system for one of the nation's first electronically steerable array radars.  Additionally, during this period, he directed integration of national assets to form an innovative Scientific Technical Intelligence Center for the U.S. Government.

Dr. Watt is a graduate of Clemson University (BSEE), the Industrial College of the Armed Forces (MBA), and George Washington University (M.S. & DSc.).  He has served on the Foundation and President's Advisory Boards at Clemson University and Chaired Utah State University Research Foundation Board of Trustees. Academic service also has included membership on the Emory University Graduate Council and the George Washington University SEAS National Advisory Council.  Professional associations have included serving as President and Chair of the Board of Directors for the International Test and Evaluation Association, Chair of the Department of Defense "National" Committee on Technology Transfer and membership on the SCRA Board of Trustees as well as the South Carolina Launch Board. 

Dr. Watt is a senior member of IEEE, Tau Beta Pi, and sigma Xi, and he frequently lectures at universities and professional societies on technology trends and their impact on society.  His career has been distinguished by numerous honors and commendations, including the Secretary of Defense Meritorious Distinguished Service Award, a Commendation for Special Service to the U.S. Congress on Telecommunications, the George Washington University Alumni Achievement and Hall of Fame Awards, the International Test and Evaluation Association (ITEA) Allen R. Matthews Award and Clemson University Alumni Distinguished Service and Thomas Green Clemson  Academy of Engineers and Scientists Award.  One of his several corporate affiliated community recognitions was the Atlanta Business Chronicle's Gazelle Award which honored Atlanta's fastest growing high-tech companies.

In summary, Dr. Watt has held executive level positions in private industry, government, and academic institutions.  His leadership and commitment to scientific and engineering advancements have been demonstrated repeatedly in global forums with results recognized in numerous publications and awards.