In addition to being a successful real estate developer and owning several real estate companies, Howard is a lifelong serial entrepreneur. The second business he founded, at age 18 while in college, is still in business, under other ownership, today.
He founded Axner Co. Inc. out of his garage in 1978 and sold it in 2006. At the time of sale, Axner Co Inc occupied a 14,000 SF warehouse with 30 employees, enjoying annual sales approaching $4M. It continues to operate today, still carrying his name.
Howard is currently the broker and owner of Meridian Realty Advisors. He also owns, with Ryan, Meridian Capital Holdings, Meridian Homes, MCH Construction and Meridian Rentals. And, along with Ryan and Shane, he is an owner of A&R Meridian Real Estate Development Company. Howard and Ryan also both own significant shares of Ingenuity Air, a rising HVAC contracting company.
By way of background, Howard knew Ryan since he played little league baseball with his son Josh. When Ryan was in high school, he spent a summer working at Axner Co Inc. In 2009, Ryan and Howard formed Meridian Capital Holdings after Ryan completed his MBA and Howard completed all core CCIM (Certified Commercial Investment Member) courses and served as a director of the Central Florida CCIM chapter. They flipped roughly 50 homes during those early years of the distressed housing market, then moved into new construction, and finally into real estate development. While they have not been contractors as long as some lifelong others, their strong business acumen allowed them to quickly learn and implement the most-current best building practices, culminating in multiple awards and recognition.
Outside of work, Howard is a well know ceramic artist, draws, paints, and enjoys playing tennis. He is also very much involved in the lives of his three children and six grandchildren.