University of Tennessee

Karen Matthews

Department: Supply Chain Management

Title: Clinical Associate Professor

Karen Matthews, a native of Baltimore, Maryland, began her academic career at the U.S. Naval Academy. She received a bachelor’s in electrical engineering from Morgan State University and a master’s of engineering and a doctorate in electrical engineering and an MBA from Cornell University. Matthews is the founder and CEO of Purpose-Driven Consulting (PDC), a provider of tailored technical, business and career development services and training. Before founding PDC, she held senior positions in Corning Incorporated’s Science and Technology Division, most recently working in early-stage markets, innovation and disruptive technologies for the optical communications sector to identify and help implement new growth opportunities in both wired (fiber, cable and connectivity) and wireless. Her focus on moving concepts through to commercialization remains, with a current emphasis on agile technology transfer, digital transformation, 5G, the Internet of Things and Industry 4.0 Innovation.

Matthews has authored numerous publications and patents and is a member of several technical and professional organizations. She has served as an executive board member of Georgia Tech’s Center for the Development and Application of Internet of Things Technologies, sitting on its research work group and leading its thought leadership work group. Most recently, she has been invited as keynote speaker, technical Subject matter expert, moderator, panelist, open forum discussion leader and trainer at various 5G, Internet of Things, smart manufacturing, digital transformation, technical, business and diversity conferences.