Mary Shirley-Howell

Mary Shirley-Howell

Director of Business Recruitment

Mary Shirley-Howell

Phone: 256-327-9591
Location: 601 Genome Way, Huntsville, AL 35806

Mary Shirley-Howell is the Director of Business Recruitment for the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology. As part of the Institute’s Economic Development team, she recruits start-up, early-stage and established bioscience companies to the HudsonAlpha biotech campus. Shirley-Howell also engages with local, regional and state economic developers, national and international site selectors, and other key external partners to grow the biosciences hub at HudsonAlpha and Huntsville.

HudsonAlpha’s Economic Development mission is driven by the overarching goals of growing the biotech presence on the Institute’s campus and throughout north Alabama; leveraging the HudsonAlpha ecosystem for entrepreneurs, start-up companies and small businesses; creating opportunities for collaboration and for genomic services; and generating economic impact to local, state and regional stakeholders.

Today, over 1000 people work on the HudsonAlpha campus, which is home to the Institute’s non-profit genomic research laboratories and more than 45 biotech companies.

Shirley-Howell brings to the role more than ten years of area development experience, having served in multiple leadership roles in the Auburn University Office of Research and Economic Development. Shirley-Howell is a member of the International Economic Development Council along with the Economic Development Association of Alabama.

Shirley-Howell earned her Bachelors and MBA from Auburn University, and Master of Arts from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota. She is married to Huntsville native Jay Howell and together they have two children, two dogs, and too many canoes and kayaks to count.

“HudsonAlpha is a growth-oriented, supportive environment for innovative biotech companies creating health and abundance in our world. Companies locating here can expect to be immersed in a community of curious, driven, brilliant people in a dynamic city with a long history of putting science to work. Biotech businesses really thrive here because of the people and the culture.”


Bachelors and MBA from Auburn University, and Master of Arts from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota