About the Honoree - 2020 Leadership Awards Dinner

Artis G. Hampshire-Cowan, Esq. is founder and principal of Leveraged Leadership Group, LLC and is a senior fellow of the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (AGB). During her 25-year tenure at Howard University, she served as the senior vice president and corporate secretary, an interim chief operating officer, and as the acting president.  A sought-after speaker and trainer, her specialties include organizational and leadership development; managing change and transition; diversity and inclusivity; board-CEO relationships, and board strategic development.  Prior to being promoted to senior vice president, Artis served as corporate secretary and vice president for human resource management with executive oversight of Howard University’s 6000+ workforce.

Before joining Howard, Artis spent 12 years working with the government of the District of Columbia as a congressional lobbyist; a consumer and regulatory administrator; a compliance officer; an attorney-advisor to the deputy mayor for economic development; and a senior advisor and counsel to the city administrator. Formerly a prosecutor in Philadelphia, Artis relocated to Washington, D.C. to join the first administration of Mayor Marion S. Barry, Jr. and rapidly advanced in leadership roles.  As general counsel of RFK Stadium, she led the District's negotiations with the Washington Redskins and subsequently joined Howard University while concurrently serving as special counsel to then County Executive Wayne Curry in his successful bid to relocate the football team to Prince George’s County, Maryland.

Artis is recognized not only for her impressive career accomplishments, but also for her profound concern for children and underserved populations, access to quality education, and the future of the Washington, DC metropolitan region.  Artis is a founding board member of Bright Beginnings, a daycare center for homeless children, and a founder of the Howard University-based Girls, Inc. DC.  

A past president of Leadership Greater Washington, Artis is a 2011 graduate of Leadership Maryland and director and former chair of The Community Foundation for Prince George’s County (“The Foundation”).  She is credited with revitalizing The Foundation with record growth and expanded influence.  Her donor-advised fund sponsors annual residential camping experiences for underserved girls.  In recognition of her stellar contributions, she was honored by The Foundation with its 2010 Lifetime Achievement Award.

With an active commitment to her community, she has served on the board of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) and the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC), and she was appointed by former Maryland Governor Parris Glendening to chair the legislatively-mandated Prince George's County Public Schools Management Oversight Panel.  Artis has also served as a county executive appointee to superintendent selection committees, including as the chair of the education transition for County Executive Curry.  More recently, she co-chaired County Executive Rushern Baker's transition and co-chaired County Executive Angela Alsobrook’s Organizational Development and Talent Management Transition Committee.

She currently serves on the CareFirst Board of Directors, the Greater Washington Community Foundation Board, and the Girl Scout Council of the Nation’s Capital Women’s Advisory Board.  She formerly served on the PEPCO Board of Advisors, the Prince George's Public Schools CEO's Advisory Council, and the boards of Teach for America and the Maryland Women's Heritage Foundation. She is a member of the International Women’s Forum; The Links, Incorporated; and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated, where she serves as the national legal advisor.

Artis has been recognized for her professional and civic achievements and contributions, including the 2010 Most Influential African Americans in Washington, DC and the 2010 and 2012 Prince George’s Suite Top 100 Who’s Who in Prince George’s County.  She was featured in the Washingtonian magazine’s Interesting Dinner Guests (2012), 100 Most Powerful Women (2009) and Power 150—People Who Make Things Happen (2007).  In 2008, she received the Women Who Mean Business Award from the Washington Business Journal.  She is the recipient of the 2013 Wiley Branton Award of the National Bar Association and a 2014 Washington Area Women's Foundation honoree.  In 2017 she received the Mary Church Terrell Award from Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated, the sorority’s highest and most esteemed honor.

She holds a certificate from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education, Institute for Higher Education Management and she is a graduate of the Stephen Covey Leadership Center with certification as a trainer for the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, Principle-Centered Leadership, and the Power Principle.

Artis is a graduate of Temple University Law Center and Morris Brown College (honors). She is an attorney licensed to practice in the District of Columbia, and holds certifications by the Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics. As an AGB senior fellow, Artis’ focus is on enhancing institutional operational efficiency and the effectiveness of higher education boards through strategic governance.