the university of
COLLINS COLLEGE OF
BUSINESS MAGAZINE â€¢ Winter 2017
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THE UNIVERSITY OF TULSA
COLLINS COLLEGE OF
BUSINESS MAGAZINE • Winter 2017
Features 7 Building a dream
8 9 10 11 12 14 15
Turning creativity on its head The secret ingredient Disrupting the status quo Investing in the future Success unwrapped View from the top Encore perfomance
16 Business leaders inducted into Hall of Fame
Departments 4 6 18 19 20 21 22 24 25 26
Message from the Dean and Letter from the Chair EAB Profiles Distinguished Alumna Profile College News Donor Profile Alumni Leader Profile Student Profiles News Faculty Profiles Faculty Research
On the cover: Katya Anaya (BSBA ϯ10)
The University of Tulsa does not discriminate on the basis of personal status or group characteristics including, but not limited to individuals on the basis of race, color, religion, national or ethnic origin, age, gender, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, genetic information, ancestry, or marital status in the administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, employment policies, scholarship and loan programs, athletic and other University sponsored programs. Questions regarding implementation of this policy may be addressed to the Office of Human Resources, 800 South Tucker Drive, Tulsa, Oklahoma 74104-9700, 918-631-2616. Requests for accommodation of disabilities may be addressed to the University’s 504 Coordinator, Dr. Tawny Rigsby 918-631-2315. To ensure availability of an interpreter, five to seven days notice is needed; 48 hours is recommended for all other accommodations. TU#16510
Message from the Dean A new year brings the promise of opportunity, and 2017 has already brought with it a number of exciting changes within the Collins College of Business as well as the university. In November, we welcomed Dr. Gerard “Gerry” Clancy as the TU’s 20th president following Steadman Upham’s retirement. We are grateful to Stead for his service to the university over the past 12 years, and for the many accomplishments TU celebrated under his leadership. We look forward to working with Dr. Clancy to continue the ]VQ^MZ[Q\a¼[XI\P\WML]KI\MTMILMZ[_PW_QTTUISMILQٺMZMVKMWVI global scale. Several new faculty members have joined the Collins College of Business, adding to the breadth of experience shared by our professors. After an accounting career in the energy industry that spanned the globe and included an expatriate stint in Argentina, IT]UV][*MV0WTUIV*;*)ϯ!5)KKϯZM\]ZV[\W<=I[ an assistant professor of professional practice in accounting in the school of Accounting and CIS. Assistant Professor of Finance and International Business Svetlana Orlova’s professional background also includes international work as an interpreter, as well as time as IÅVIVKQITIVITa[\NWZ1V\MT+WZXWZI\QWV)VL\PIVS[\W\PMOMVMZW[Q\aWN ,I^QL4I_[WV*;ϯ_PWXZM^QW][Ta[MZ^MLI[KPIQZWN the TU Board of Trustees, and his wife, Leslie, Tracy Suter was named the David R. and Leslie Lawson Chair of Entrepreneurial Studies. He brings a tremendous background in the development of creativity and innovation initiatives and curriculum. The college hopes to forge stronger relationships with the many downtown-based organizations focused on strengthening Tulsa’s MV\ZMXZMVM]ZKWUU]VQ\a\WM`XIVLW]ZMٺWZ\[QV\PQ[IZMIIVL
enhance the classroom experience for our students. We have a strong legacy of alumni who have taken the road to entrepreVM]Z[PQXIVLaW]¼TTÅVLXZWÅTM[ of some of these outstanding individuals in the magazine’s feature story, “Building a dream” (p. 7). TU also was recently recognized by Mosaic, the Tulsa Regional Chamber’s diversity business council, for our diver[Q\aIVLMVOIOMUMV\MٺWZ\[ Diversity and inclusion are not only priorities for the university, but also for many of the businesses that hire our graduates. We plan to continue making strides in this area by identifying opportunities for the college to recruit a diverse and inclusive mix of top students and faculty who represent the global culture in which we operate. Sincerely,
A. Gale Sullenberger Dean, Collins College of Business
Letter from the Chair As a group of business leaders who serve as a resource to faculty and students within the Collins College of Business, the Executive Advisory Board shares insights, best practices and ZMKWUUMVLI\QWV[_PMV_MKWV^MVM\_QKMIaMIZ1VIVMٺWZ\\W diversify and expand our network to include a variety of industries and companies, we’ve added several new board members. I look forward to learning from their collective expertise and hearing more about how we can prepare our students to successfully enter the workforce and meet the needs of their future employers. With U.S. collegiate enrollment declining in recent years, the college, along with the university as a whole, is taking a closer look at recruitment and retention strategies. In a highly competitive higher education landscape, attracting and retaining top students is more important than ever. Internships are a key part of the educational experience at TU, and our Business Career Center continues to build and strengthen relationships with alumni and employers to ensure our students have the opportunity to apply classroom concepts in a real-world setting. Experience gained during these internships set our students apart during the interview process and often lead to full-time job WٺMZ[<_W[\]LMV\[[PIZMQV[QOP\[WV\PM^IT]MWN \PMQZQV\MZV[PQX[ on pages 22-23. Finally, we are working to develop new programs that represent the evolving needs of businesses. Along with a minor in entrepre-
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neurship and innovation launched last year, the college is introducing a minor in data analytics and has worked with the College of Engineering and Natural Sciences to develop a minor in cyber security. For graduate [\]LMV\[QV\PMPMIT\PKIZMÅMTL_MIZM partnering with the Oxley College of 0MIT\P;KQMVKM[\WWٺMZIVMUXPI[Q[ on healthcare administration as part of the MBA program, which we hope to begin in the fall of 2017. We are always looking for ways to partner with employers to develop opportunities for our students, whether through internships, guest speakers or even providing feedback on ways we can better prepare our students for their careers. You are welcome to email ccb-eab@ utulsa.edu with any thoughts you have. Sincerely,
8I]TI3]aSMVLITT*;*)¼ Chair, Collins College of Business Executive Advisory Board
COLLINS COLLEGE OF BUSINESS EXECUTIVE ADVISORY BOARD
Mark Abbott (BS ‘79, MBA ‘85) Principal Project Manager Phillips 66
Bob Dennis (BS ’83)
Sean Alexander (BSBA ‘97) Principal Director of Application Platforms Microsoft
Jim Dilley (BS ’91)
Managing Partner KPMG, LLP
Chairman & CEO American Heritage Bank
Paula Kuykendall (BSBA ‘86)
John Lindsay (BS ’86)
Retired Senior Vice President & Chief Accounting Officer Hilton Hotels Worldwide
Director – ITO Account Delivery Hewlett Packard Enterprise
CEO and President Helmerich & Payne
Albert H. Myres, Sr.
Group Managing Partner & Chief Business Development Officer OCTCET Inc.
The Honorable Dewey F. Bartlett, Jr. Former Mayor City of Tulsa
Kim Fairchild (BSBA ’96)
Clint Dishman (BS ’92, MBA ’97)
Nate Lovelle (BSBA ’00)
Vice President-Wealth Manager Senior Portfolio Manager UBS Financial Services
Dax Craig (BS ’91)
Chris Crawshaw (BSBA ’88) CEO Advisory Research, Inc.
Chief Operating Officer Service King
A. Charles Funai (BS ’78)
Ralph Hill (MBA ’84)
Angela Kouplen (MBA ’02)
Senior Vice President, Risk Management, Bank of Oklahoma
Marcia MacLeod (BS ’75, JD ‘80)
Marc Maun (BS ’80) Chief Credit Officer BOK Financial
Retired Senior Vice President of Human Resources and Administration, WPX Energy
Antwane Owens (BSBA ‘96) Senior Finance Manager North America RetailFree Cash Flow Team Amazon
President and CEO Valen Technologies, Inc.
Assurance Partner HoganTaylor LLP
Senior Vice President Strategic Investment Advisory Group Bank of Oklahoma
Pam Peck (MBA ’89)
Retired Vice President and Treasurer Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group
Stu Crum (BSBA ’82)
President Cameron Glass
Jim Cameron (BS ‘66)
Nevyle Cable (BS ‘77)
President & Chief Executive Officer First National Bank of Okmulgee
(BSPE '88 MBA '95)
President, and CEO BlueStone Natural Resources, LLC
President Barga, LLC
Sharon McElroy (BSBA ‘86)
Chairman and CEO ETX Energy, LLC
Garrett Mills (BS ‘06)
Vice President Marketing McElroy Manufacturing
Associate Private Wealth Management Goldman Sachs
Warren Ross (MBA ’02)
SVP, CFO & Treasurer ONEOK
CEO The Ross Group
Vice President of Information Technology, WPX Energy
Emeritus Member: Jim Miller (BS ’66)
Retired Managing Partner, Arthur Andersen OK/AR
Director, University Relations & Recruiting Phillips 66
Mike Colby (BS ’92), Bridgewater Associates Suzanne Lucenta (BSBA ’92), CFO, American Waste Control
Bradley Stoots (BS ’81) Managing Partner Grant Thornton, LLP
Chantal Veevaete (MBA ’90) Retired SVP Human Resources Phillips 66
Donna Weinkauf (BS ’83) Weinkauf Petroleum
Sonja Wilson (BS ’82, MS ’83) CEO Strategy2Funding
The University of T ulsa Collins College of Business Magazine Winter 2017
The University of Tulsa Business Magazine is published by The University of Tulsa Collins College of Business, 800 S. Tucker Drive, Tulsa, OK 74104-9700.
The University of Tulsa Gerard P. Clancy, President A. Gale Sullenberger, Dean, Collins College of Business Ralph Jackson, Associate Dean, Collins College of Business Amy Gerald, Director of Development Amber Remke, Communications Specialist
Collins College of Business Mission Statement Our mission, through creating and disseminating knowledge, is to educate, mentor and transform business students for professional and leadership roles in all forms of organizations.
The University of Tulsa Mission The University of Tulsa is a private, independent, doctoral-degree-granting institution whose mission reflects these core values: excellence in scholarship, dedication to free inquiry, integrity of character and commitment to humanity. The University achieves its mission by educating men and women of diverse backgrounds and cultures to become literate in the sciences, humanities and arts; think critically, and write and speak clearly; succeed in their professions and careers; behave ethically in all aspects of their lives; welcome the responsibility of citizenship, service and leadership in a changing world; and acquire the skills and appetite for lifelong learning.
EXECUTIVE ADVISORY BOARD PROFILES Sharon McElroy In the 28 years since Sharon McElroy (BSBA ’86) joined the team at McElroy Manufacturing, the company has experienced remarkable growth. That growth has allowed her to shape the image of a family company that is now an undisputed leader in pipe fusion machines and fintube manufacturing equipment. As an undergraduate at The University of Tulsa, McElroy majored in management information systems, a field of study that incorporated her interests in organization and analysis. “I thought it was a great combination of business and computers,” she said. MIS, now computer information systems, also played to the logical and grounded side of McElroy’s personality. “It was a perfect fit for me.” An internship with Sooner Federal Savings and Loans beginning the summer before her junior year gave McElroy hands-on experience in setting up a series of processes and standards for the bank’s new programming system. She moved to a full-time position in the IT department after graduation, supporting the system’s back end. About a year and a half later, McElroy was ready to start a family with her husband Chip (BS ’85). Seeking a job that would allow more flexibility, she began working as a programmer for McElroy Manufacturing, the engineering and manufacturing firm founded by her father-in-law, Art, in 1954. As her kids grew older and her hours at the firm increased, McElroy sought out a new role within the company.
“I had some ideas for creating some specification sheets and advertising for a sister company that didn’t have anyone leading its marketing efforts,” she said. So, she pitched the idea to Chip (who had transitioned to president and CEO of McElroy Manufacturing in 1988), and soon found herself working on a series of improvements to marketing processes for Southern Specialties , a full-service manufacturing corporation. Project work evolved into the responsibility of managing marketing for the entire company; and today, as vice president of marketing, McElroy oversees a team capable of in-house services ranging from copywriting and ad design to producing training videos for customers. “I had a special opportunity to completely change what I was doing and find something I love even more,” said McElroy. “And, I still use my MIS degree in a lot of ways.” As one of the newest members of the Executive Advisory Board, McElroy looks forward to sharing some of the industry knowledge she’s amassed during her career as the college develops new programs. “To see a collective group of ideas and conversation that occurred in the spring woven into this year’s programing and know you were part of efforts to help the university in that regard has been a fantastic experience.”
Antwane Owens Antwane Owens (BSBA ’96) recalls a pivotal moment his junior year in high school. He knew he was college bound: His parents were college grads and expected him to be as well. But when the time came to explore options, a school guidance counselor asked whether he played sports. “I said, ‘I play basketball, but not well enough to get a scholarship.’ Her response was that maybe I should consider a trade school. That conversation has always stuck with me,” said Owens. A high ACT score and strong academic performance changed the nature of those conversations. TU topped his college list, though he knew it would be a financial stretch. On a recommendation from TU Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Services Earl Johnson (BFA ’89), Owens applied for and received a full scholarship from the National Association of Black Accountants (NABA) and Williams Cos. “That made it possible for me to attend TU,” he said. The scholarship included an internship at Williams, which Owens started the summer before his freshman year and continued until his senior year. “I had access to smart, successful people who always gave their time and advice,” he said. Internships with Samson Resources and Deloitte and Touche LLP rounded out his senior year. “My internships added value to my résumé because I could talk about the kinds of things I was doing when I interviewed for a position.” Owens focused on public accounting and set his sights on a Big Five firm. He received offers from four and began his career at Deloitte, where he became the company’s first African Amer6
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ican professional employee in Oklahoma to work as an auditor. His diligence was rewarded through his fast track promotion to senior auditor in less than 24 months. Soon after his promotion, he entered The Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth for an MBA and earned his degree as one of the youngest in his class. Subesquent to graduating from Tuck, he has held senior positions at a sports marketing start-up, Capital One Financial and the Boston Consulting Group before founding his own management strategy consulting firm, Excellence Through Insight, Inc. In October, Owens accepted a senior finance position at Amazon as a leader on their North American free cash flow initiative. Paying gratitude forward inspired Owens to become a partner for Dallas Social Ventures Partners, an organization that helps nonprofits focused on education and at-risk youth. He says, “Earning the TU scholarship has always been the impetus for my desire to stay involved with the university and to establish a pioneer gift early in my career. It’s a commitment that I made to myself that I would pay back my scholarship by providing the funding for future students to have that same opportunity.” He also is giving back to the Collins College of Business through his service on the Executive Advisory Board. “I was honored to be asked to be on the board,” he said. “I appreciate the opportunity to give back and hopefully help make the institution better.”
Building a Dream
iving the entrepreneurial dream
represents the ultimate business achievement for many. Who wouldn’t enjoy enviable perks like answering only to yourself, setting your own hours and going to work every day doing what you love while attaining selfmade millionaire status? The alluring rise of entrepreneurial icons like Steve Jobs, Oprah Winfrey and Mark Zuckerberg give hope that anyone could have what it takes to reach the pinnacle of success.
But, spend a few minutes talking to an entrepreneur about the realities of striking out on their own and they’re quick to share a hefty dose of reality: Success doesn’t happen suddenly, and it certainly doesn’t come without plenty of sleepless nights, hard lessons and financial sacrifices. These Collins College of Business alumni also say they wouldn’t have it any other way. Some had an entrepreneurial bent from a young age. Others took a less direct route, pursuing traditional careers before changing course. Yet, all have found success by daring to build their dreams.
Turning creativity on its head Professor Tracy Suter has always dared to think LQâ€ŤŮşâ€ŹMZMV\TaTWVOJMNWZMQ\_I[IXWX]TIZIL^MZ\Q[QVO slogan for Apple), though he didnâ€™t label himself as creative until a discerning student pointed it out. Early in his career, a wise student handed Suter a book â€” Gordon Mackenzieâ€™s Orbiting the Giant Hairball: A Corporate Foolâ€™s Guide to Surviving with Grace â€” and said, â€œEmbrace this philosophy. This is you.â€? The giant hairball illustrates the tangled mass of rules, processes and systems that can hinder creativity in an organization. â€œOrbiting the hairball means striving for creative outcomes in spite of those conventions,â€? said Suter. â€œI never thought of _PI\1_I[LWQVOI[JMQVO]VQY]M#Q\Âź[R][\_PI\1 did.â€? <PI\_I[QV!!<_MV\aaMIZ[TI\MZ;]\MZ[\QTTMUJZIKM[ creative outcomes and encourages his students to do the same. Suter was appointed to the newly established David and Leslie Lawson Endowed Chair in Entrepreneurial Studies in the Collins +WTTMOMWN *][QVM[[0M_QTTJ]QTLWVMâ€ŤŮşâ€ŹWZ\[\WM`XIVL\PMKWTTMOMÂź[ current programs, which include Studio Blue, the NOVA Fellowship program and a recently launched minor in innovation and entrepreneurship, all open to students from any major. In due time, he will IT[WXZWXW[MVM_XZWOZIU[\WKWVVMK\LQâ€ŤŮşâ€ŹMZMV\IZMI[WN KIUX][IVL advance the univerityâ€™s partnership with the community.
Suter explains that innovation serves as an MKWVWUQKLZQ^MZÂš.WZ\PMĂ…Z[\\QUMQVZMKWZLML history, more businesses have closed their doors than PI^MWXMVML\PMUÂˇ\PMLMĂ…KQ\Q[IZW]VL Ă…ZU[VI\QWVITTaÂşPM[IQLÂš1V\MZU[WN QVKZMI[QVO\PM number of independent business owners, we really need to catch up as a nation.â€? Adopting a mindset of innovation and entrepreneurship doesnâ€™t solely apply to those interested in hanging their own shingle. â€œSome of the coolest ideas with long-term appeal come from employees working within an existing structure or framework. Gmail is a great example; it was a pet project developed by a Google employee. We need to empower employees to innovate within their areas to bring that same level of WZQOQVITQ\a\WM`Q[\QVOĂ…ZU[Âş Empowerment is a cornerstone of Suterâ€™s classes. Not content to I[[QOV_WZS_Q\PIV[_MZ[MI[QTa^MZQĂ…MLJaI/WWOTM[MIZKPWZ;QZQ Y]MZaPMQV[\MILI[S[[\]LMV\[\W\PQVSQVLMXMVLMV\TaIJW]\Q[M[ QVIVMâ€ŤŮşâ€ŹWZ\\WJ]QTL\PMQZKWVĂ…LMVKMJMaWVLKTI[[QKITIKILMUQK KWV\M`\[Âš7N\MVWVMWN \PMUW[\KPITTMVOQVOY]M[\QWV[1PMIZQ[ â€˜What do you want regarding this assignment?â€™ My reaction is to \]ZV\PMY]M[\QWVJIKS\W\PMUIVLI[SÂť?PI\LWaW]_IV\\WOQ^M me?â€™ I like to give students opportunities to voice their perspectives and to decide how ideas are best presented.â€?
â€œSkeptics might say that creativity cannot be taught; a person is either born creative, born innovative, or theyâ€™re not. I disagree. All of us are born creative, and if we are not encouraged to use it, we often lose it.â€?
0Q[Ă…Z[\\I[S"<MIKPIXXTQMLKZMI\Q^Q\aIVLQVVW^I\QWV\W]VLMZgraduate students from across campus. â€œSkeptics might say that creativity cannot be taught; a person is either born creative, born innovative, or theyâ€™re not,â€? Suter said. â€œI disagree. All of us are born creative, and if we are not encouraged to use it, we often lose it.â€? His approach, then, is to rekindle more than instruct, illustrate more than tell and demonstrate as much as he asks. In the end, Suter said PQ[OWITQ[NWZPQ[[\]LMV\[\WPI^MIZMVM_MLKWVĂ…LMVKMQV\PMQZ creative abilities and the courage to orbit the giant hairballs they will eventually encounter. On the decision to call TU his new home, Suter said, â€œWhat better time than now to move TUâ€™s current successes and future opportunities forward into new territories, especially with Tulsaâ€™s entrepreneurial community continuing to grow? Fab Lab, Kitchen ,MOZMM[6WZ\P\PM.WZOM*M\I*TW`7VM5QTTQWV+]X[Â¸ these are not only shining examples of what local entrepreneurs have built, but also an entire ecosystem created to help people grow up within it. This kind of natural engagement allows TU to match Q\[Mâ€ŤŮşâ€ŹWZ\[_Q\P\PW[MWN \PMZZW]VLQVOKWUU]VQ\a5aPWXMQ[\PI\ _MKIVITT_WZS\WOM\PMZNWZIOZMI\MZJMVMĂ…\Âş 8
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Suter even turns the concept of failure on its head, impressing upon his students that missteps mark the route to success. He presented Blake Landon, a freshman in his applied creativity and innovation course, with the Fail Harder Award in recognition of a project failure that became an ultimate success. Landonâ€™s failure NWZUML\PMJI[Q[WN \PI\LIaÂź[TMK\]ZMWâ€ŤŮşâ€ŹMZQVO[\]LMV\[ILQâ€ŤŮşâ€ŹMZMV\ take on what they would typically perceive as a negative experience. The overarching message: Failing does not make one a failure. Quitting, giving up â€” or worse, not trying at all â€” are the truest markers of failure. Failing can be a great source of learning if persistence and tenacity follow. Itâ€™s not all creativity all of the time, though. Suter grounds his MV\MZXZQ[QVO[QLM_Q\PIĂ…ZUNW]VLI\QWVQVIVITa\QK[IVL[\I\Q[\QK[ He likens the dichotomy to the popular Mac versus PC commercials: â€œWhen Iâ€™m in my creativity and innovation classes, Iâ€™m the Mac guy. In my research classes, Iâ€™m the PC. We see them painted across that ILKIUXIQOVI[JMQVOLQâ€ŤŮşâ€ŹMZMV\IVLLQ[\QVK\J]\QVZMITQ\aaW]PI^M to do both. Data is everywhere, and those people who can look at \PI\LI\IQVI[TQOP\TaLQâ€ŤŮşâ€ŹMZMV\_IaIZM\PMXMWXTM_PWKIVQVVW^I\M I hope to be able to do that as I join the faculty here at TU.â€? Q
The secret ingredient . It’s 10 p.m. in Sahuayo, a city in the west Mexico state of 5QKPWIKIV.ZWU\PM[MKWVLÆWWZIXIZ\UMV\IJW^M\PMNIUQTa¼[ bakery, 10-year-old Katia Anaya smells the fresh conchas that have just come out of the oven. Children in Mexico often enjoy the sweet bread, which resembles a seashell, with a glass of milk as a bedtime [VIKS¹-^MZaVQOP\1_W]TLOWOM\WVMº[IQL)VIaI*;*)ϯ She would fall asleep to the familiar sounds of bakers practicing their craft: “Pans and trays hitting the wood tables, loud music, singing. I’ve never seen someone work the way they do, with the U][QKLIVKQVO[QVOQVOIVLUISQVORWSM[1\¼[IY]ITQ\a\PMaITTPI^M IVL[WUM\PQVO]VQY]M\PI\¼[IT_Ia[JMMVXIZ\WN UaTQNMº <PM)VIaINIUQTaNW]VLML\PMJISMZa¼[ÆIO[PQXTWKI\QWVQV !1V!! 3I\QI¼[NI\PMZ.ZIVKQ[KW¹8IVKPWº)VIaIPMIZL from a friend that there was a growing Hispanic population in Tulsa. “He told my dad about how it would be a great opportunity to open IJISMZa\PI\[MZ^MLOWWLY]ITQ\a5M`QKIVJZMILº[PM[IQL The family moved to Tulsa, bringing with them the traditional ZMKQXM[KWUUQ\UMV\\WY]ITQ\aIVLIZ\Q[IV\MKPVQY]M[\PI\UILM Pancho Anaya one of the largest bakeries in Michoacan. Katia Anaya recounts her father’s dedication to the business’s KKM[[¹0M_W]TLTMI^M\PMPW][MI\IU)N\MZ[KPWWT_M_W]TL ITTOW\W\PMJISMZaIVLKWUMPWUMI\IJW]\!XU<PMZM_I[R][\ a lot of hard work and discipline.” At 13, Anaya started working the register at the bakery after school, completing homework assignments between customers. Education was non-negotiable for Anaya and her siblings, who also share in the responsibilities of running the bakery today. “We always knew we would go to college and work never interfered with that,” she said. In high school, she took on more of the baking and also mastered the art of cake decorating. Choosing to attend TU allowed Anaya to continue working while earning her degree. She always knew she wanted to continue \PM\ZILQ\QWVWN PMZNIUQTa¼[JISMZaIVL<=WٺMZMLIUIVIOMUMV\ degree concentration in family-owned business and entrepreneur[PQX<ISQVOIP]UIVZM[W]ZKM[KW]Z[MTML\WIVQV\MZM[\QV\PMÅMTL and today it comprises a majority of her work at the bakery, which has expanded to three locations including one in the Kendall
Whittier neighborhood near TU’s campus. After completing her degree in 2010, Anaya took on the task of implementing new HR policies and procedures for the bakery. “Most of the time when you graduate, you go into a business that already has these things laid out for you; but for me, it was more challenging. I had to write the bylaws for the business and impleUMV\VM_XWTQKQM[KPI[ZMY]QZML]VQNWZU[º 1V\PMÅZ[\UWV\PWN PMZVM_ZWTM)VIaIPILNW]ZXMWXTMZM[QOV “I asked myself whether there was something wrong with me — was I too strict? But sometimes you have to make these kinds of changes, IVL]VNWZ\]VI\MTaVW\M^MZaWVM_QTTIKKMX\\PMU<PI\_I[ILQٻcult transition for me.” Anaya leaned on her parents’ mentorship to work through the challenges and ultimately, employees found a new rhythm under the updated policies. While some operations at the bakery may have changed, Pancho )VIaI¼[KWUUQ\UMV\\WXZWL]KQVOY]ITQ\aJISMLOWWL[ZMUIQV[\PM sole focus of the business. The bakers still prepare everything from [KZI\KP][QVO\ZILQ\QWVITPIVLKZIN\ML\MKPVQY]M[¹?M¼^M[MMV[WUM JISMZQM[[\IZ\\WWٺMZLQٺMZMV\[MZ^QKM[J]\[\IaQVONWK][MLWVW]Z product and continuing to improve it is our ultimate goal,” Anaya said. She is excited about partnering with local restaurants, which exposes the bakery’s products to a new audience. “We’ve started doing business with Mexican restaurants, providing bread for tortas, and also making baguettes and hot dog and hamburger buns for other restaurants in town. It’s a new market for us.” Anaya notes that being part of a family-owned business comes _Q\PQ\[W_V]VQY]M[M\WN KPITTMVOM[[WUM\PQVO[PMTMIZVMLL]ZQVO Professor Jim Senese’s entrepreneurship class. “He picked members of each team and placed complete opposites with one another,” she recalled. “It was a powerful illustration because in a family-owned business, you don’t get to pick your family. You have to learn to work \WOM\PMZIVLQ\¼[WN\MVLQٻK]T\\W[MXIZI\MNIUQTaNZWUJ][QVM[[ It’s not something we have down 100 percent, but we are always working on it. It’s truly satisfying to accomplish all of these goals and dreams together as a family.” Q
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Disrupting the status quo When asked how friends and colleagues would describe him, Jacob Johnson (BSBA ’06) doesn’t skip a beat. “Inquisitive is at the top of that list,” he says, “along with commanding, decisive, logical and systematic. I’m the person who will grab the steering wheel and take over if I’m unsure. I’m a fixer.” Those traits have served Johnson well as the founder of Tulsa-based Gitwit Creative, a team of innovators who translate ideas into actions that drive results for clients. In the nine years since he and Dan Fisher cofounded the agency, it has grown to 19 employees who manage projects for companies ranging from tech startups to an international manufacturer of power tools. As an undergraduate, Johnson cultivated his innate curiosity by exploring ideas and taking risks in the classroom. “TU gave me the ability to learn how to look for resources, ask questions, vet something and make good decisions. I could do anything. I could try anything. Smaller class sizes and the intimacy of TU’s campus breed the comfort required to be able to ask a question. That’s the culture we try to create at Gitwit.” He cites as his most formative class a creative marketing course taught by his future cofounder, Fisher. “It was the first class I took that enabled me to apply creativity not just to an advertising concept, but more upstream in areas like prototyping and testing. I knew within two weeks of starting that class that this was the path my career would take.”
all pieces of the process. Johnson describes his team members, who have been directly involved in launching nine ventures during the past five years, as technologists and voracious learners. Their appetites for continued learning keep the agency on the forefront of digital advancements and the types of problems those advancements seek to solve. “So many people go build stuff, but our process is to vet before trying to build,” explains Johnson. “Our job is to ask, ‘What are you trying to do? Why are we here? Why do we need this?’ Asking the right questions sets us apart.” Johnson’s management philosophy also sets Gitwit apart. Perks like unlimited vacation, no set office hours and paying 100 percent of health benefits allow team members to design the creative lifestyle each seeks. Among them are two who have amassed more than 100,000 Instagram followers, one who created a famous dry rub and one who paints dog portraits. “Most companies are afraid to empower employees’ ‘passion projects’ because they might leave,” he explains. “I want to enable them to fulfill those ventures, and I’ll be the first to invest if they want to pursue something outside of Gitwit.” Of course, building a successful agency hasn’t come without a few challenges along the way. Johnson recalls that in Gitwit’s early days, his natural reaction was to get frustrated by the little things.
“TU gave me the ability to learn how to look for resources, ask questions, vet something and make good decisions. I could do anything. I could try anything. Smaller class sizes and the intimacy of TU’s campus breed the comfort required to be able to ask a question. That’s the culture we try to create at Gitwit.” An idea at the center of a paper he wrote in Fisher’s class eventually materialized as Studio Blue, the creative greenhouse in Helmerich Hall on TU’s campus. Johnson proposed a new way of teaching creativity in a collaborative, flexible space that would give students the freedom to explore ideas. Professor Charlie Wood shepherded the project, and the space launched in 2008. Johnson did some consulting work after graduation and called on Fisher to help pitch a project for Hilti, with exceptional results. “That led to Hilti asking us to do more work, and us saying, ‘Let’s take this seriously.’” The pair founded Gitwit with a mission to offer creative services that extend beyond advertising. “We wanted to be an agency that understands the entire product cycle — advertising is just a small part of what we do.” From concept to market launch, Gitwit can manage any or
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“But you start to realize that as you progress in your career, those who make it through each level in the process have dealt with the same challenges. They’re not successful because they didn’t run into challenges, but because they overcame them.” He says that as a leader, his role has shifted to forecasting those issues and paving the way for what’s ahead. And what’s ahead for Johnson and Gitwit? It all traces back to that fundamental trait he cultivated at TU: an eager question-asking mentality. “The biggest disrupters were asking the most fundamental questions. TU does a good job of preparing students to ask those questions, and the most valuable business leader is someone who maintains an inquisitive nature. In a world full of answers, the best question wins.” ■
Investing in the future
Q^MaMIZ[IOW6WZIP;\MQVPW][M*;*)¼!!*;1*4¼!! MBA ’05) took a leap of faith, leaving her career as foreign exchange trader, vice president at BOK Financial to begin a real estate investment business with her husband, Tim. As a new mom, Steinhouse wanted the freedom IVLÆM`QJQTQ\a\W_WZSUW[\TaNZWUPWUM_PQTM[\QTTXZWL]KQVOI solid income source for her family. She found herself sketching out IJ][QVM[[XTIVW^MZIK]XWN KWٺMMMIZTaWVM;I\]ZLIaUWZVQVO Two-and-a-half hours later, she pitched the idea to her husband, and the idea for a business was born. While the company’s success wasn’t built overnight, Steinhouse had been laying the groundwork for her turn as an entrepreneur since high school. She grew up in a small town just outside of Chicago. Instead of the typical part-time job at a restaurant or retail chain, Steinhouse spent her afternoons compiling educational data for a research consultant. The opportunity to work independently and to manage her own projects from start to ÅVQ[PWٺMZMLIOTQUX[MQV\W\PMTQNMWN IVMV\ZMXZMVM]Z¹1\_I[ interesting and rewarding, but I saw the extensive hours my boss worked — I never thought I would work for myself,” she said. Though The University of Tulsa wasn’t on Steinhouse’s radar when it came time to choose a college, her dad convinced her to give it a second look. She applied to TU, as well as the University of Notre Dame and a couple of other universities in Illinois. ¹4Q\\TMLQL1SVW_QV!!\PI\KPWW[QVO<=_W]TLJMIKZQ\QKIT decision that would open up a 20-plus-year adventure and blessing after blessing in my life.” ;\MQVPW][MUIRWZMLQVÅVIVKMIVLIT[W_I[XIZ\WN \PMÅZ[\ WٻKQITKTI[[\WOZIL]I\M_Q\PILMOZMMQVQV\MZVI\QWVITJ][QVM[[ IVLTIVO]IOM,M\MZUQVML\WÅVQ[PQVNW]ZaMIZ[;\MQVPW][M mapped out an accelerated course of study with the help of her adviser, Professor Mark Collins. She fostered her love of Spanish language and culture at TU, immersing herself in Tulsa’s vibrant Hispanic communities, and cofounded the TU Global Network (TUGN). “All of my extracurricular activities complemented and enhanced the complex business and language concepts I was learning in the classroom,” she said. 0MZÅZ[\RWJW]\WN KWTTMOM_WZSQVONWZIVQV^M[\UMV\UIVIOMZ _I[V¼\IOWWLÅ\IVL+WTTQV[QVNWZUMLPMZ\PI\*IVSWN 7STIPWUI_I[TWWSQVO\WÅTTQ\[NWZMQOVM`KPIVOMIVITa[\XW[Q\QWV;PM QV\MZ^QM_MLIVL*73UILMPMZIVWٺMZ_Q\PQVIKW]XTMWN LIa[ At BOK, Steinhouse consulted with clients and tailored [WT]\QWV[\WÅ\\PMQZNWZMQOVM`KPIVOMVMML[*a\PMMVLWN PMZ 13-year tenure at the bank, she had a seven-state territory and was instrumental in helping grow foreign exchange sales and revenues exponentially. “I used all facets of my TU education; accounting IVLÅVIVKMKWVKMX\[_MZMIXXTQMLLIQTa1ZMO]TIZTa_WZSML_Q\P clients doing business globally so my international knowledge was critical, and I even periodically used my Spanish-speaking skills.” ;\MQVPW][MZM\]ZVML\W<=\WX]ZMIV5*)JMVMÅ\QVONZWU the corporate experience that enriched her time in the classroom. She was promoted midway through the program to foreign exchange trader. As part of an assigned class project, Steinhouse
revisited her high school job experience, using it as a foundation to write a business plan for a similar concept in Tulsa. That exercise planted the seed. Years later, she channeled her energy into starting a business she could manage herself. She and her husband already owned rental properties, so forming a real estate investment business felt like a natural progression. They hit the ground running after Steinhouse crafted her business plan that fateful Saturday morning and now own a portfolio of rental properties in Tulsa and Sand Springs. A property management company assists with leasing, repairs and making the homes ready to rent. Though Steinhouse’s husband has a full-time career outside of \PMQZJ][QVM[[\PMXIQZKWTTIJWZI\M[WVXZWXMZ\aIKY]Q[Q\QWV[IVL sales. “When there is a house to sell, Tim will generally meet with buyer prospects and I get involved with the negotiating process when someone prefers to communicate in Spanish,” said Steinhouse. She adds that, “Tim has been a critical asset and supporter of the business.” Steinhouse manages all of the day-to-day operations and needs of the business, noting that her time at the bank has proved beneÅKQIT\WQ\[KKM[[¹1\OI^MUM^IT]IJTMM`XWZM\WI^IZQM\aWN accounting applications, negotiating, banking loan terminology and ZMY]QZMUMV\[JIVSQVOWXMZI\QWV[[MMQVO[UITTJ][QVM[[M[QVIK\QWV and practical approaches when meeting with clients and prospects.” <PMXI[\Å^MaMIZ[PI^MVW\KWUM_Q\PW]\KPITTMVOM[IVL learning experiences. “To name just a few, we’ve had to learn how to address vacancies, a variety of tenant situations and myriad repair and make-ready issues.” The partnership of their property management team as well as valuable advice from real estate investor friends have seen the couple through tough situations along \PM_Ia¹-IKP\QUM_MPI^MMUMZOML[\ZWVOMZIVLMY]QXXML_Q\P more knowledge,” she said. ;\MQVPW][MPI[NW]VL\PMNZMMLWUIVLÆM`QJQTQ\a[PMQVQ\QITTa sought in transitioning to life as an entrepreneur. “It takes a lot WN PIZL_WZSIVLXTIVVQVOIVLZMY]QZM[IOZMI\LMITWN \QUMIVL KWUUQ\UMV\J]\PI^QVO\PMÆM`QJQTQ\a\WWKKI[QWVITTaZMIZZIVOM my work schedule to respond to what happens in life and be there for the needs of my family has been a real blessing,” she said. “It is very rewarding to know that you own what you are building.”
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Success Unwrapped .ZWU\PMKWVĂ…VM[WN I[UITTOIZIOMJMPQVLPQ[PW][MIVL_Q\P the few funds he could draw from his credit cards, Frank Fellers *;*)Âź [\IZ\MLIJ][QVM[[[MTTQVO^QVaTUI\MZQIT[\W[QOVKWUXIVQM[<PI\_I[QV! <PQZ\aaMIZ[TI\MZ.-44-:;PI[JMKWUM the worldâ€™s largest wrap supply company. Grit, determination and a steady diet of peanut butter and jelly [IVL_QKPM[LMĂ…VML\PW[MĂ…Z[\TMIVaMIZ[AM\\PZW]OP\PMP]UJTM beginnings and numerous challenges thrown his way, Fellers persevered. He had big dreams from a young age; one of which was to attend TU. â€œWhen I was in elementary school, we used to drive by the TU campus often. I thought it would be the most wonderful thing in the world to be born and raised in Tulsa and to go to TU.â€? He also knew he would one day start a business, or at the very least, hold a senior leadership position in one. It was only natural that he wanted to attend the best business school in this part of the country. Fellers admits that he didnâ€™t realize just how hard that transition from high school to college would prove. â€œI had to study more and do more on my own,â€? he said. â€œIt was harder than I thought, J]\\PI\_I[IOWWL\PQVOÂş0MKQ\M[\PMĂ…VIVKMIKKW]V\QVOIVL statistics classes as especially valuable for a business owner. â€œYou
The garage where Fellers founded the company in 1986.
A custom wrapped wall at the company's Tulsa, Okla., distribution center.
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have to understand numbers when youâ€™re in business,â€? he said. â€œHaving investors, paying taxes, reporting to your employees and to yourself about your businessâ€™ performance â€” all of those are critical.â€? )N\MZOZIL]I\QVO.MTTMZ[\ZQMLINM_LQâ€ŤŮşâ€ŹMZMV\RWJ[QV[MIZKPWN \PMXMZNMK\Ă…\0M_MV\\W_WZSNWZI[UITTKWUXIVa\PI\UILM awnings and discovered an interest in the sign industry. Thatâ€™s when he knew the time was right to hang his own shingle. From his garage, Fellers began selling supplies to companies that applied wraps to vehicles and made signs. He maxed out credit cards to OM\PQ[J][QVM[XIVLZ]VVQVO\PMV[MK]ZMLI TWIVNZWU his father and a $10,000 loan from his uncle â€” both of which he Y]QKSTaXIQLJIKSQVN]TT About a year and a half into his venture, Fellers began searching for a few investors with the intent to someday take the business public. He approached Dave Lawson (BS â€™70), who ran an investor group at the time. The group invested in Fellers, and Lawson sat on the companyâ€™s board of directors for the next aMIZ[Âš,I^MML]KI\MLUMWV\PMM`\ZMUMQUXWZ\IVKMWN J]LOM\QVOÂşZMKITT[.MTTMZ[Âš<PMĂ…Z[\\PQVOPMLQL_I[I[SQN _M had a budget. I didnâ€™t have one prior to that, but itâ€™s critical to any business, and I learned that â€” and more â€” from Dave and the investor group.â€? Growth came rapidly in the years that followed, augmented by IL^IVKMUMV\[QVKWUX]\MZ\MKPVWTWOaÂš1V\PMÂź![W]ZQVL][\Za realized you could put an inkjet nozzle on a cutter and print instead of cutting the vinyl. Printing on the vinyl material thatâ€™s used to wrap vehicles has been an evolutionary process.â€? TU connections once again proved invaluable to Fellers as he worked to establish the companyâ€™s management team. â€œYou canâ€™t build a business without recruiting and hiring great employees to help you,â€? he said. â€œYou go with your contacts and with what you know, and I developed a lot of contacts at TU.â€? Stacy Clausen *;*)Âź!5*)Âź!Q[^QKMXZM[QLMV\WN UIZSM\QVO<WU*ZWXPa *;*)Âź!Q[+.7IVL3IZT-VOMT*;*)Âź Q[^QKMXZM[QLMV\ of sales. All three have been with the company for more than 20 years. With an employee base of more than 300, FELLERS now has TWKI\QWV[IZW]VL\PMKW]V\Za)N\MZUISQVO[IKZQĂ…KM[IVLW^MZKWUQVOWJ[\IKTM[L]ZQVO\PW[MĂ…Z[\aMIZ[QVJ][QVM[[PMM`XTIQV[ that the next challenge is to sustain growth. â€œIf youâ€™re not growing, Q\Âź[^MZaLQâ€ŤŮťâ€ŹK]T\\WUIQV\IQVIJ][QVM[[<PI\Âź[\PMKPITTMVOM\W\PQ[ LIaaMIZ[TI\MZ0W_LW_MOZW_[ITM[IVLXZWĂ…\[VM`\aMIZ'Âş )[I^M\MZIVMV\ZMXZMVM]Z.MTTMZ[Wâ€ŤŮşâ€ŹMZ[\PZMMN]VLIUMV\IT principles that have served him well: â€œFirst, you have to be able to work extremely hard. If you havenâ€™t been genetically built with a strong work ethic, you better develop it. Second, you have to stay focused. Decide what your company is in the simplest terms possible. Third, you have to have a strong desire to succeed and believe in capitalism. You have to believe that making money and building jobs is contributing to this world in a positive way.â€? Q
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View from the top
f you watched a Monday Night Football game on ESPN during the NFL’s 2016 regular season, chances are, you spotted Sam Walker’s handiwork. A video camera ace since his first TV production course in high school, Walker (BSBA ’14) now spends his days operating mobile robotic cameras that capture aerial footage during televised events. “I bought my first camera in high school and loved taking pictures,” he recalls, “which progressed into videography.” Walker started doing freelance video work as a senior in high school, and continued working throughout his time as a student at TU. Initially a petroleum engineering major, it only took one semester before he decided it was not for him. He discovered management information systems (now computer information systems) in the Collins College of Business, which was a much better fit. And any time he wasn’t in class, Walker could be found honing his directing skills by capturing video of all Golden Hurricane football and basketball games, as well as working for local production companies. As drone technology emerged, Walker knew demand for aerial video would skyrocket. He purchased a drone and added to his quickly expanding skillset, and also became certified to fly a helicopter. “I got hooked when I took my girlfriend on a Valentine’s Day helicopter tour,” he said. “I hadn’t been in one since I was 8, and I wanted to be able to fly it myself the next year on Valentine’s Day. Three months later, I had my license.” His long-term goal is to earn a commercial license, so that he can one day own his own helicopter and camera system.
“When you’re flying a 50-pound camera over Tom Brady’s head at 20 miles per hour, you want the system as safe as you can make it.” Walker says that after getting a taste of having the flexibility to choose his own projects and set his own schedule, he knew he wanted to go into business for himself. By the time he graduated in 2014, Walker had filed the paperwork to incorporate his company, Over the Top Aerial Productions. Walker’s work centers primarily on sports events, which means he may only stop at his home in Tulsa just long enough to do a few loads of laundry and re-pack for the next destination. “I like the thrill of live TV,” he said. “The event happens and then it’s over. You may mess up, but you get to do it again the next day.”
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In 2015, Walker landed a contract as a pilot with SkyCam, a formerly Tulsa-based company that developed a computer operated, stabilized aerial camera supported by four wires and suspended over a playing field to capture close-range footage of athletes. He traveled to SEC football games with CBS in 2015 and to Monday night football games for ESPN in 2016. A few days before a game is scheduled to air, Walker and the SkyCam team arrive to set up the system, which involves running miles of cable and constructing a series of virtual walls that control the camera’s placement. Walker says his MIS telecom courses often come into play, particularly when understanding the signal paths he uses to control the camera. “When you’re flying a 50-pound camera over Tom Brady’s head at 20 miles per hour, you want the system as safe as you can make it,” he said. “Being an aircraft pilot really helps, since you’re used to constantly checking gauges while focusing on what’s happening inside and outside. It’s the same type of environment in the control booth when we operate the SkyCam.” The team disassembles its equipment immediately following the game, typically wrapping up around 3:30 or 4 in the morning. “It’s a pretty cool feeling to leave the stadium and be in the airport by 6 a.m., watching SportsCenter highlights and the work we did the night before.” Besides the gratification that comes with seeing his work on national television, Walker says he also enjoys the freedom that comes with selecting the projects that interest him. And he constantly pushes himself to stay on top of the latest technology. “I want to learn everything I can,” he said. “Any opportunity I have to learn something new, I’m going to do it. I always want to be able to bring something to the table that makes it hard not to hire me.” ■
Encore performance Drawn to the bright lights of Hollywood at a young age, Isabell Estes (BSBA ’88) envisioned one day performing before crowds of thousands as a pop star. But she also had the foresight to realize that in addition to raw talent, she would need strong business acumen. “I majored in business because I read a story about Elvis having to share 50 percent of his earnings with his manager,” she recalls. “I wanted to be a performer and to know everything about music, but I also knew that I needed to understand the business side of things so that I didn’t end up sharing a larger portion of my earnings with a manager,” she said. Fortunately for Estes, she loved business. When faced with the decision on whether to pursue a career in music, she contemplated the meaning behind the phrase “starving artist” and instead set aside aspirations of fame for the practicality of making a solid living. Estes hails from a family of TU grads, and ultimately chose TU over her other top contender (the University of Kansas) because of its smaller feel. “I felt like I could really blossom at TU, and I did.” Her memories of TU include the supportive professors and opportunities to practice theory through applied case studies and real-world projects. In one of her marketing classes, she worked on a campaign for the Ansa Baby Bottle, a product originally developed in Muskogee, Okla. “It was a great experience to see it go from a startup business to being sold to a larger company,” Estes said. She also values the liberal arts foundation TU’s curriculum provided. “My professors encouraged me to think instead of just ZMO]ZOQ\I\QVOQVNWZUI\QWV)ZO]QVOIVLY]M[\QWVQVOQLMI[_MZM actually cherished. I was in my element at TU.” ?PQTM-[\M[LQLV¼\MVL]XX]ZQVONIUM[PMLQLÅVLPMZ[MTN climbing the corporate ladder within the entertainment industry
as a marketing and public relations executive for TCI of Oklahoma, TV Guide Channel and Tele-Communications, Inc. (now Cox Communications). Once the trend toward cable consolidation began, Estes decided the timing was right to explore other options. She also felt a pull to spend more time with her three children. “At that point, in my mid-30s, I didn’t think there were a lot of options for someone who wanted to be a big part of her kids’ lives at the level I was at and within the corporate culture I was part of,” she said. She made the leap to strike out on her own and founded Estes Communications, providing marketing and public relations consulting services to corporate and small J][QVM[[KTQMV\UXQVOQVNMM\ÅZ[\[PM learned a few lessons the hard way. “I did _PI\ITW\WN MV\ZMXZMVM]Z[LWÅO]ZQVO1 would just go out and make money with no business plan,” she said. “I would not suggest that to anyone. While I made money, I left a lot on the table.” That experience led to her opening the Tulsa branch of EntreXZMVM]Z¼[;W]ZKMIJ][QVM[[\PI\WٺMZ[I[[Q[\IVKM\WQVLQ^QL]IT[ considering franchise opportunities. “I learned a lot about what it means to be a business owner versus being the technician, and making the business work for you rather than working for your business,” said Estes. She even helped place her husband, Scott -[\M[*;*)Տ QVPQ[W_VNZIVKPQ[MJ][QVM[[IN\MZPM_I[TIQLWNN from a 20-year career in the pharmaceutical industry. “He trusted me to help him launch Enviro-Master of Tulsa and truly was the wind beneath my wings as I found my calling.” )ZUML_Q\PIZMVM_MLKWVÅLMVKMIN\MZ[XMVLQVOaMIZ[I[ a franchise coach, Estes returned to entrepreneurship for a repeat performance. She launched Encore WorkLife in January 2015 to PMTX\PW[MI\IKIZMMZKZW[[ZWIL[ÅVLKKM[[WVKMIOIQVR][\I[ she did. Q
“As a career strategist, I target people who have experienced success and have found themselves in a rut,” Estes explained. “I want to show them that they can have that encore work life by rethinking, refining and reinventing. That’s why I called my business Encore Worklife — it all ties back to being a performer. You want to perform so well that everyone calls you back out for that encore performance. It is possible to be successful again. You just have to have the courage to make a change.”
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Business leaders inducted into Hall of Fame
Left to right: Former TU President Steadman Upham; Jake Henry Jr.; Robin F. Ballenger; Doug McMillon (MBA ÓŠ!; Collins College of Business Dean Gale Sullenberger
The college inducted three business leaders into its Hall of Fame during a special ceremony on Oct. 6 at Gilcrease Museum. Robin F. Ballenger, Jake Henry Jr. and Doug McMillon were named outstanding business leaders for 2016. The Business Hall of Fame annually honors the widespread contributions of outstanding business leaders who shape and strengthen the university, community and economy. The University of Tulsa Collins College of Business Hall of Fame has inducted 50 individuals since its establishment in 2000. 16 T H E U N I V E R S I T Y O F T U L S A
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ROBIN F. BALLENGER Robin F. Ballenger is the chairwoman of Flint Resources Company, LLC, and president of the Flint Family Foundation. She was the third generation of the Flint family to lead Flintco, a diverse, national construction KWUXIVa_Q\PWâ€ŤŮťâ€ŹKM[QV[M^MVKQ\QM[ until its sale in January 2013. She served as chair of the board of Flintco, LLC and its subsidiaries. Her special interest was Flintcoâ€™s Native American work; under her leadership, the company did construction for more than 25 Indian nations across the United States. Through Ballengerâ€™s leadership, Flintco consistently ranked in Engineering Newsâ€™ top 100 contractors in the nation and won \PM=;,MXIZ\UMV\WN +WUUMZKM*][QVM[[,M^MTWXUMV\ Agencyâ€™s Minority Construction Firm of the Year Award. Her distinguished leadership was further evidenced by the National +MV\MZNWZ)UMZQKIV1VLQIV-V\MZXZQ[M,M^MTWXUMV\Âź[ American Indian Business Owner of the Year Award and the /ZMI\MZ<]T[I1VLQIV)â€ŤŮşâ€ŹIQZ[+WUUQ[[QWVÂź[+PIZTM[+PQJQ\\a +WUU]VQ\aKWV\ZQJ]\WZI_IZLNWZPMZMâ€ŤŮşâ€ŹWZ\[\WQUXZW^M6I\Q^M American lives. Ballenger won The Journal Recordâ€™s prestigious 2007 Woman of The Year Award; and in 2010, she was inducted into the Tulsa Hall of Fame. An enrolled member of the Cherokee Nation, Ballenger served as president of the Cherokee Nation Foundation, a \ZQJITTaKPIZ\MZMLVWVXZWĂ…\IVLPI[[MZ^MLWV\PM+PMZWSMM Nation Citizensâ€™ Compensation Committee. She is a past board member of the Cherokee Heritage Center. Current board memberships include Tulsa Community College Board of Regents, River Parks Authority, Clarehouse and the Tulsa City-County Library Trust.
JAKE HENRY JR.
Jake Henry Jr. was appointed XZM[QLMV\IVLKPQMN M`MK]\Q^MWâ€ŤŮťâ€ŹKMZ of Saint Francis Health System (SFHS) on July 1, 2002. Henry and his executive team have led SFHS through a time of tremendous growth and success. Since 2002, SFHS has reinvested UWZM\PIV JQTTQWV\WM`XIVL update and replace facilities and MY]QXUMV\6M\_WZ\PWN \PMKWUXIVaPI[QVKZMI[MLNZWU UQTTQWVQV\WUWZM\PIV JQTTQWVQVIXMZKMV\ QVKZMI[M.ZWU\WI\W\ITJMVMĂ…\WN UQTTQWVPI[ been returned to the Tulsa community and surrounding region. Henry obtained his bachelorâ€™s degree from Texas Tech University in Lubbock, and his masterâ€™s degree in health administration from Trinity University in San Antonio, where he was president of his class and received the Distinguished Student Award. [He served as an Army combat medic with the 1st +I^ITZa,Q^Q[QWV)QZUWJQTMQV;W]\P>QM\VIU!ÂˇE 0MVZaPI[UWZM\PIVaMIZ[ÂźM`XMZQMVKMQVPMIT\PKIZM administration. Prior to his time at SFHS, he served as president
IVLKPQMN M`MK]\Q^MWâ€ŤŮťâ€ŹKMZWN \PM[Q`PW[XQ\IT;XWPV0MIT\P System in Corpus Christi, Texas. Before that, he served a long tenure with the St. Joseph Health System of Orange, California, where he was responsible for the systemâ€™s hospitals in Texas and northern and southern California. Henry served as president of the University Health System in Lubbock and had PQ[Ă…Z[\+-7XW[Q\QWVI\IOMQV;IV)VOMTW<M`I[_PMZM he built the 125-bed Angelo Community Hospital. Henry has served as chair of the Tulsa Area United Way (2007) and the Tulsa Regional Chamber of Commerce (2013). He is a director of the Childrenâ€™s Hospital Foundation board, the William K. Warren Medical Research Center and Montereau, Inc. He is chair of the board of directors of CommunityCare Managed Healthcare Plans of Oklahoma and a member of the American Bank and Trust board of directors. He has served as a member of the American Hospital Associationâ€™s House of Delegates and is a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives.
DOUG MCMILLON As CEO of Walmart, Doug McMiTTWV5*)Ő?!TMIL[I[\ZWVO management team that is working to deliver the companyâ€™s mission of saving people money so they can live better. Under his leadership, Walmart is bringing together its stores, logistics network and digital commerce capabilities in new ways to empower customers to shop whenever, wherever and however they want. .ZWU.MJZ]IZa!\W.MJZ]IZa5K5QTTWV[MZ^ML I[XZM[QLMV\IVLKPQMN M`MK]\Q^MWâ€ŤŮťâ€ŹKMZWN ?ITUIZ\1V\MZVItional, a fast-growing segment of Walmartâ€™s overall operations, _Q\PUWZM\PIV[\WZM[IVLVMIZTa I[[WKQI\M[QV KW]V\ZQM[W]\[QLM\PM=VQ\ML;\I\M[.ZWU\W!PM [MZ^MLI[XZM[QLMV\IVLKPQMN M`MK]\Q^MWâ€ŤŮťâ€ŹKMZWN ;IUÂź[+T]J IVWXMZI\QVO[MOUMV\WN ?ITUIZ\_Q\P[ITM[WN UWZM\PIV billion annually during his tenure. McMillon is a longtime champion of Walmartâ€™s customers, Q\[I[[WKQI\M[IVL\PMKWUXIVaÂź[K]T\]ZM1V! PM[\IZ\MLW]\ as an hourly summer associate in a Walmart distribution center. 1V!!_PQTMX]ZQVOPQ[5*)PMZMRWQVML\PMKWUXIVaI[ an assistant manager in a Tulsa Walmart store before moving to merchandising as a buyer trainee. He went on to serve in successful senior leadership roles in all of Walmartâ€™s business segments. He remains a merchant at heart and understands where customers around the world are heading next. McMillon has served on the board of directors for ?IT5IZ\;\WZM[1VK[QVKM!IVLK]ZZMV\TaQ[\PMKPIQZ of the Executive and Global Compensation committees. In addition, he serves on the boards of directors of the Consumer Goods Forum, the U.S.-China Business Council and Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. He also serves on the advisory board of the Tsinghua University School of Economics and Management in Beijing, China, the executive committee of Business Roundtable and the Deanâ€™s Advisory Board for the Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas.
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Distinguished Alumna Profile
Caron Lawhorn Caron Allen Lawhorn (BS ’83) began charting the course of her successful career at a young age. “It’s kind of embarrassing to say it out loud,” she says with a smile, “but I always knew I wanted to be an accountant. Since grade school, that’s what I had my sights set on, so that’s what I did.” Lawhorn hails from Dallas, but considers herself an Oklahoma girl at heart after moving to the Tulsa area at the age of 10. The Broken Arrow High School graduate initially chose to attend a state university, though it didn’t take her long to realize that sitting in a classroom with 200 other students wasn’t for her. She transferred to The University of Tulsa her sophomore year, joined Chi Omega and soon settled in to life on campus. Fond memories of TU include the friendships she formed living in the sorority house, participating in intramural sports (she [\QTT[XWZ\[IKZWWSMLZQVOÅVOMZKW]Z\M[aWN IJZMIS[\IQVML _PQTMXTIaQVOIOIUMWN ÆIONWW\JITTIVLKPMMZQVOWV\PMUMV¼[ JI[SM\JITT\MIU\WIV61<KPIUXQWV[PQX^QK\WZaL]ZQVOQ\[ÅZ[\ year under then-head coach Nolan Richardson. In the classroom, accounting Professor Bill Jarnagin stands out as one of Lawhorn’s favorites. “He was one of those professors who really cared about students, not just about research.” After graduation, she contemplated leaving Tulsa for a larger city and explored options in Dallas. “It turned out, the job opportunity I wanted was in Tulsa, so I stayed, and I’m certainly glad that I did.” Lawhorn landed a position in public accounting with KPMG as an auditor, a position she felt absolutely prepared for thanks to the solid business education she received at TU. “Early on as an accounting major, there was a lot of emphasis on writing, and I didn’t get it. Accounting is numbers; why do we have to write? But as an auditor, you must document your work, and it became crystal clear to me how important that aspect of the job really was.” Lawhorn’s next career move took her to Emergency Medical ;MZ^QKM[)]\PWZQ\a-5;)I[KPQMN ÅVIVKQITWٻKMZ;PM\PMV RWQVML76-73QV!! I[UIVIOMZWN I]LQ\QVOIVLY]QKSTa advanced to other corporate roles, including senior vice president IVLKPQMN IKKW]V\QVOWٻKMZIVL[MVQWZ^QKMXZM[QLMV\WN KWZXWrate planning and development, before moving into the operations side of business as president of ONEOK’s distribution company. Following ONE Gas’ split from ONEOK about two years ago, she became a member of the executive management team and is responsible for customer service, gas supply, rates and regulatory IVLJ][QVM[[LM^MTWXUMV\¹1\¼[Y]Q\MI^IZQML[M\WN ZM[XWV[QJQTQties, which is why I enjoy it so much. No one day is like another.” 4I_PWZVQ[Y]QKS\WKZMLQ\I[\ZWVOMUXTWaMMK]T\]ZMIVLIV executive team that fosters a collaborative work environment for making ONE Gas a great place to work. :MÆMK\QVOWV\PMKW]Z[MWN PMZKKM[[N]TKIZMMZ4I_PWZV says that although she didn’t initially envision herself in the role she holds today, it highlights the importance of remaining open \WVM_WXXWZ\]VQ\QM[IVLVW\TQUQ\QVOaW]Z[MTN \WI[XMKQÅKKIZMMZ path. “When I mentor young people, I tell them, ‘The best thing you can do is excel at the job you have and the opportunities will present themselves.’ I’ve been fortunate to have those opportunities in my career, and I’m very grateful.” Lawhorn is married to her best friend and husband of 30 aMIZ[;PI_V2,¼ !I\MIKPMZIVLNWW\JITTIVLOWTN KWIKPI\
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The TU Alumni Association annually presents accomplished alumni with The Distinguished Alumni Award. This award is given to recognize outstanding achievement by an alumnus or alumna in a particular discipline, organization or cause. Lawhorn was honored along with Don Hoose (BS ’59) and Jim Wallis (BS ’62, JD ’65) at the 2016 Distinguished Alumni Celebration held during Homecoming. Tulsa’s Bishop Kelley High School. Sons Austin and Adam, both Bishop Kelley graduates, chose to pursue degrees at TCU. “Family is important to us,” said Lawhorn. “We have great kids, and we’re blessed to have most of our extended families here in Tulsa.” The couple is adjusting to life as empty nesters: Lawhorn jokes that ;PI_VILR][\MLU]KPY]QKSMZ\PIV[PMLQL<PMaMVRWa\ZI^MTQVO and are about two-thirds through their goal to visit all 50 states. Work and family keep her calendar full, but Lawhorn still makes time to give back through professional and charitable activities. She is a member of the board of regents for Tulsa Community College and a member of the boards of directors of the Southern Gas Association, the Tulsa Area United Way, and Saint Simeon’s Foundation. She is also a former chair of TU’s Collins College of Business Executive Advisory Board and a past president of Ronald McDonald House Charities of Tulsa. On being named a Distinguished Alumna, Lawhorn said, “I’m very honored, and it’s completely unexpected. I’m in great company this year and with those who have gone before. I just couldn’t be more proud to be associated with TU. The university continues to excel at educating students and preparing them for the world.”
College News TU’s marketing program named among best in the country College Choice has named The University of Tulsaʼs marketing program is one of the best in the country ranking it No. 20 on the Best Bachelor’s in Marketing Degrees for 2017 list. Criteria for selection included survey responses rating academic reputation, financial aid offerings, overall cost of the school and graduate success rates, weighed with data from other publicly available sources. College Choice is an independent online publication dedicated to helping students and their families find the right college. The site publishes rankings and reviews along with resources to help students evaluate college choices.
TU to Host Annual Conference of Accountants May 22-23 The School of 71st Annual Conference of Accountants Accounting and Computer Information Systems will hold the 71st annual Conference of AccounShaping tants May 22-23 at the the Lorton Performance Center. Attendees can expect discussions from notable speakers representing corporations and organiMonday, May 22 & Tuesday, May 23, 2017 zations across the nation. Lorton Performance Center, The University of Tulsa Collins College of Business Topics cover all functional School of Accounting & Computer Information Systems areas of accounting within www.utulsa.edu/coa a broad business context, including financial, managerial, systems, auditing and tax areas. More than 400 accounting professionals and educators are expected to attend the conference. The Conference of Accountants evolved from a series of annual meetings initiated in 1947 by Professor Emeritus Paul J. Graber. Funds allocated from the net proceeds of each year’s conference provide awards and educational support for undergraduate and graduate accounting students at TU. Cosponsoring organizations include the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners; Financial Executives Institute; The Institute of Internal Auditors; Beta Alpha Psi, Eta Rho Chapter; Institute of Management Accountants; Tax Executives Institute; and Tulsa Chapter, Oklahoma Society of CPAs. Attendees can earn up to 16 hours of CPE for CPA or other certification continuing education requirements. For more information or to register, visit www.utulsa.edu/coa, or contact Jennie Dugger at 918-631-3194.
New tuition structure in place for Master of Energy Business degree The School of Energy Economics, Policy and Commerce announced a new tuition structure for all students enrolled in the Master of Energy Business program beginning. In recognition of the continuing economic downturn within the energy industry, the new tuition rate for MEB courses (all courses carrying an MEB prefix) is $900 per credit hour, which represents a 27 percent decrease. The $900-per-credit-hour rate is fixed for three years. Current MEB students and students who will begin the program during the 2017 calendar year have three years to complete the program at this rate. “With this change, we believe that TU’s MEB program is the best value for the money among all energy-focused graduate management degrees,” said Professor Tim Coburn, director of the School of Energy Economics, Policy and Commerce and the Master of Energy Business program. “Despite recent economic conditions, it’s still a great time to pursue advanced training that can fill talent gaps as a result of older employees retiring. We hope this tuition reduction will give more students the opportunity to enhance their skills and experience to meet a critical need in the energy industry.” TU’s online MEB degree provides broad-based training designed to help professionals already employed in the energy industry advance into managerial jobs and other positions of corporate leadership and responsibility. The online format gives working professionals flexibility while earning a graduate degree from a Top 100 university. The MEB program offers spring, summer and fall starts. For more information on the program, visit utulsa.edu/meb.
Beta Alpha Psi earns Distinguished Chapter recognition TU’s Eta Rho Chapter of Beta Alpha Psi has once again been recognized as a Distinguished Chapter for exceeding the baseline requirements of the organization and excelling in the areas of academics, professionalism and leadership. Beta Alpha Psi is an international honorary and service organization for financial information students and professionals. The organization’s primary mission is to encourage and give recognition to scholastic and professional excellence in the business information field. In addition to promoting the study and practice of accounting, finance and information systems, Beta Alpha Psi provides students with opportunities for self-development, service and association among members and practicing professionals, and also encourages a sense of ethical, social and public responsibility. Beta Alpha Psi was founded in 1919 and the Eta Rho Chapter was established at TU in 1990. The group holds monthly professional meetings featuring a speaker from a firm or organization and also coordinates opportunities to network with local professionals throughout the semester. Anna McColl, applied associate professor of accounting, has served as faculty adviser for TU’s Beta Alpha Psi chapter for two years. “Beta Alpha Psi continues to have a strong presence on campus,” said McColl. “At Beta Alpha Psi events, our students have been able to network with professionals, leading to both internship and full-time positions. Recognition by the national organization acknowledges the high standard of excellence that our student leaders maintain for our chapter.” W I NT E R 2 01 7
Ashley Lewis Jackson An adage states, “We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” As a rising young professional at General Electric, Ashley Jackson (BSBA ’08) wholeheartedly embraces this philosophy. In the eight years she has worked for General Electric, Ashley Jackson has held multiple roles and received three promotions. She hopes to continue the ascent toward an executive leadership position while giving her time and resources to inspire others to do the same. Jackson’s mom and sister were both practicing accountants, and she \PW]OP\Q\UQOP\JMIOWWLÅ\NWZPMZ too. An internship as a freshman at TU cemented her choice to major in accounting. Jackson also added a second major in management specializing in J][QVM[[TI_IKMZ\QÅKI\MQV)NZQKIV American Studies and a minor in sociology to round out her academic foundation. On campus, Jackson sought to gain as much leadership experience as she could. “When you attend a smaller university, you’re not only able to join groups as a member, but you can also take leadership roles,” she said. Having smaller class sizes also meant professors served as mentors, including accounting Professor Dennis Hudson, who also sponsored TU’s chapter of the National Association of Black Accountants (NABA). “He was a great person in terms of mentoring in the classroom and leveraging his experience when I began M`XTWZQVOLQٺMZMV\KWUXIVQM[NWZMUXTWaUMV\º Jackson pledged Delta Sigma Theta and found a sisterhood that further enhanced her involvement at TU. As graduation approached, Jackson was selected by her sorority as one of 50 participants for the national Leadership DELTA program, which GE sponsors annually. She met HR leaders and other employees and learned about the multinational KWZXWZI\QWV¼[ÅVIVKQITUIVIOMUMV\XZWOZIU “I got in touch with an HR manager, who told me to apply,” said Jackson. “GE fast tracked my interview since I had to respond \WIXMVLQVORWJWٺMZNZWU8?+\PMNWTTW_QVO_MMSº)N\MZI XPWVMQV\MZ^QM_[PMÆM_\W+WVVMK\QK]\IVLPILIVWٺMZJa the time she got back home. GE valued the diversity in Jackson’s academic background, as well as her leadership and internship experience. “It’s not just about being able to execute. You have to be able to lead others and work in a team environment.
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These are attributes GE saw in me based on my experiences at TU.” <PMKWUXIVa¼[\_WaMIZÅVIVKQIT management program gives employees the opportunity to rotate positions every six months. Within that time, Jackson _I[IJTM\WM`XMZQMVKMNW]ZLQٺMZMV\ZWTM[ across GE’s capital business, expand her VM\_WZSIVL\ZI^MT\WLQٺMZMV\[Q\M[_Q\PQV the company. She then chose another leadership program to focus on auditing, which sent her across all of GE’s businesses, including oil and gas, aviation and transportation. “I moved every four months and worked in the United Kingdom twice,” she said. “The experience allowed me to see LQٺMZMVKM[QVPW__MWXMZI\MLWUM[\QKITTa and internationally, and also gave me a look at the operational side of the business.” In 2013, Jackson was promoted to KWUUMZKQITÅVIVKMUIVIOMZKW^MZQVO\_WWN \PMKWUXIVa¼[ North American oil and gas businesses. Part of her job included reviewing contracts for the business’s regional deals. “I love it,” she said. “I get to work with sales managers and the legal team to negotiate contracts with customers. I’m able to leverage my accounting background and business law degree, and even my sociology minor in reading and persuading people.” Through GE’s Women’s Network and African American forum, Jackson has connected with mentors who have been instrumental in helping guide her career path. “Surrounding myself with knowledgeable mentors has helped me navigate the corporate world, and helped me to understand what additional experience I need in order to step into an executive leadership role one day,” she said. Jackson stresses the importance of giving back as a way to help others have the same opportunities she’s had the good fortune to experience. It’s one of the reasons she established a Pursuit of Excellence book scholarship soon after graduating from TU. “Whether it’s through your time in mentoring others or by giving of your resources, we can have a major impact on future generations if everyone does their part.” Editor’s note: Jackson has once again been promoted and is now the customer success integration manager for GE Digital.
Katie Neville Ahrens Katie Ahrens (BS ’01, MSF ’02) thrives in the fast pace of the trading floor. As a petroleum risk and compliance manager for QuikTrip, one of Oklahoma’s largest private companies, she helps guard against losses and unnecessary risk associated with commodities transactions. “With so much money and product moving all of the time, we want to help protect the company and our position by assessing the market and understanding the risk involved,” she said. Though she couldn’t have envisioned the career path that would eventually take her to QuikTrip, Katie Ahrens traces it all back to the experiences she had and connections she made during her time at TU. The Oklahoma City native chose TU because she liked its size and proximity to home. Ahrens majored in math as an undergraduate, a subject at which she excelled. She felt a business degree would complement the technical background she gained as a student in the College of Engineering and Natural Sciences. )VQV\MZV[PQXWV\PM\ZILQVOÆWWZI\ Williams cemented her desire to pursue a career in risk management. “It was an amazing work environment — fast paced, with a lot of smart people involved,” said )PZMV[;PMÅVQ[PMLPMZOZIL]I\MLMOZMM while interning in the trust department I\IÅVIVKQITQV[\Q\]\QWVI[TW_MZXIKML environment that contrasted sharply with her time at Williams. With few full-time job prospects in Tulsa, Ahrens moved to Kansas City to work for a small company that did brokerage work and advising for credit unions. “After about a year and a half, I wanted to get back into the trading and risk management side, and back to Tulsa,” she said. Ahrens returned to Williams — and familiar territory — in risk control for the company’s power and natural gas trading group. When Williams sold a majority of its trading portfolio in 2008, she again relocated, this time to Houston with her husband, ;M\P*;¼;PM\WWSIXW[Q\QWV_Q\PIVMVMZOaJ[QLQIZaWN *MIZ;\MIZV[_PQKP_I[TI\MZIKY]QZMLJa285WZOIV The Houston chapter of TU’s Alumni Association kept Ahrens connected to the university she loved. “Having that network and being able to grow our community in Houston was
important to me,” said Ahrens. “I still wanted to stay involved with TU even though we weren’t living in Tulsa.” )N\MZÅ^MaMIZ[QV0W][\WV\PM couple began seeking new job prospects in hopes of returning to Tulsa. A friend told Ahrens about a rare opening at QuikTrip, which typically promotes from within. The position aligned with her experience and career goals. “For me to be able to do the job I want to do in a great environment and for a great company shows how much the relationships I’ve built have helped me throughout my career,” said Ahrens. She also stayed active in the Alumni Association and earned a nomination to lead the group for a two-year term as president starting in 2015. “As part of \PMVI\QWVITJWIZLaW]PI^MI]VQY]M opportunity to see how things work from the inside out as opposed from the outside in,” she said. “This also is one way to give back and serve the university that has given so much to me.” Under Ahrens’ leadership, the board is building a strategic plan for the Alumni Association to evaluate current activities and help shape the future of the organization. For the third year, chapters participated in a day of service to extend campus initiatives to communities across the country, which helps alumni stay connected to the university. The group is also working to provide opportunities for students and alumni to network with one another based on mutual career interests. Ahrens says that while the TU alumni base may not be as large as those of state universities, it feels more like a family. “It doesn’t matter where you are or where you go — you’ll always have a member of your TU family nearby.”
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Resilience in the face of adversity Amanda Calhoun never imagined she would choose to major in energy management, but four years marked by valuable internship experience and lessons learned along the way have shown the resilient senior that she’s ready to conquer the industry when she graduates in May. Growing up and attending high school in Broken Arrow, Amanda Calhoun was familiar with TU. “I visited during Tulsa Time and there was a seminar about the energy management program,” she said. “I’d never heard about it before, and it intrigued me. The program focused on applying classroom concepts through internships, and I appreciated a degree that was going to prepare me to work in the energy industry.” Calhoun took the initiative to secure an operations internship with Direct Energy, an electricity and natural gas marketing company, for the summer after her freshman year. That experience laid the foundation for a land internship with Devon Energy the following summer. “I wanted to give land management a shot because I felt like it would be a natural fit for me,” said Calhoun, “and it was a fantastic opportunity.” Part-time jobs with Paladin Land Group LLC during the school year provided technical skills to complement her work in land management. Though she accepted an offer to return to Devon after completing her junior year, a downturn in oil prices meant the company had to make cuts to its internship program. With just a couple of months to search and few prospects in sight, Calhoun got creative. “I cast my net broadly and looked everywhere,” she said. A query on Indeed’s job board turned up an opportunity with the North Dakota Department of Trust Lands in Bismarck. Calhoun applied, thinking the job description sounded perfect. TU connections extend throughout the U.S. and internationally, and North Dakota is no exception. Drew Combs (MEB �16), director of minerals management and also a student in TU’s online Master of Energy Business program, happened to be in charge of the hiring decision. “The way our interview process works, I don’t see the applications until they’ve already been vetted,” he said. “Amanda’s application was among the top three, and she was by far the best candidate.” Combs then called Professor Tom Seng, who coordinates TU’s energy management program, for a reference. Calhoun had a phone interview and accepted an offer with just days to secure housing before packing her car to head north for the two-day drive to Bismarck. Calhoun’s work with the department offered her an entirely new perspective on the industry. The department owns and manages about 3 million acres of land, much of it located in the heart of the Bakken Formation, one of the largest contiguous deposits of oil and natural gas in the U.S. Calhoun was in the minerals division and spent the summer working on projects like assisting with a land auction, helping with applications for lease assignments and analyzing trust fund allocations. “A lot of the work we do just fit right into what Amanda
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brought to the table,” said Combs. “It was nice to have someone we didn’t have to train and who already knew what a spacing unit was.” “My experience in North Dakota ultimately benefited me more than going back to the same company,” Calhoun said. “It taught me to be open and not be afraid to go out on a limb. Innovation is bred by necessity, and our energy management students have had to get creative. Whether it’s going to work for a state agency or in other segments of the energy industry, our students are doing a great job searching out different opportunities.” Combs couldn’t have asked for a better outcome, either. “We would have given her a full-time job if she had already graduated,” he said. “My hope is to continue hiring TU students as interns since this worked out so well.” Calhoun recently accepted a position in Tulsa-based Magellan Midstream’s professional development program and has already started working part-time for the company while completing her final semester at TU. She will transition to her full-time position following graduation.
Determination leads Syria native to new opportunities Half a world away from the civil war taking place in her home country, Rawan Al-Zarrad recently completed the two graduate degrees she has worked toward for the past two and a half years. She left Syria amid a financial climate marked by widespread poverty and economic instability, searching for a better opportunity, and found just that during her time at TU. Al-Zarrad’s journey to the U.S. began when her husband was applying for admission to a doctoral program. With a destination set once he accepted a spot at OU-Tulsa, Al-Zarrad initiated her own search for a graduate program and enrolled in TU’s dual MBA and Master of Finance degrees. In addition to her studies, she jumped right in to campus involvement by joining the Student Finance Association. The group makes an annual trip to Chicago to tour the Federal Reserve and the Chicago Board of Options Exchange. Advisory Research CEO Chris Crawshaw (BSBA ’88) also invited the students to visit PQ[QV^M[\UMV\ÅZUIVLTMIZVUWZMIJW]\I[[M\UIVIOMUMV\¹1 fell in love with the city and the whole experience,” said Al-Zarrad. With a desire to learn more about the investment work at Advisory Research, Al-Zarrad set out to secure an internship with \PMÅZU;PMTMIZVML+ZI_[PI__I[^Q[Q\QVOKIUX][IVLUILMI XWQV\\WQV\ZWL]KMPMZ[MTN IVLQVY]QZMIJW]\_WZSQVO\PMZML]ZQVO the summer. “She was the picture of perseverance and determination, which is what it takes to succeed in this environment,” said Crawshaw. “This industry is hyper-competitive — not only for full-time jobs, but also internships. She’s a great example of making a decision and pursuing it.” Al-Zarrad interviewed for the position and was hired for a summer internship. Though she faced initial challenges — like ZMTWKI\QVO\WIV]VNIUQTQIZKQ\aÅVLQVOIZWWUUI\MIVLTMIZVQVO to navigate the public transportation system — the experience she gained through the process was invaluable. )[XIZ\WN \PMÅZU¼[QV\MZVI\QWVIT\MIU)TBIZZIL[XMV\ much of her time researching potential investment targets. She [\]LQML\PMKWUXIVQM[¼ÅVIVKQIT[XMZNWZUIVKMIVLN]\]ZMXZWRMK\[ ¸IVa\PQVO\PI\_W]TLIٺMK\N]\]ZM[\WKSXMZNWZUIVKM¸IVL XZM[MV\MLZMXWZ\[UUIZQbQVOPMZÅVLQVO[¹1\_I[UaÅZ[\ \QUM][QVO*TWWUJMZOIVLINM_W\PMZ\WWT[XT][UaÅZ[\\QUM being exposed to real-life analysis,” said Al-Zarrad. “I was able to improve my communication and presentation skills while gaining exposure to the international market.” +ZI_[PI_[Ia[\PI\PQZQVO)TBIZZILJMVMÅ\MLPQ[ÅZUI[_MTT “She did a nice job understanding the academic underpinnings and being able to apply those in a real-world scenario. That’s not always easy to do. This was nothing but a positive experience for all.” ,]ZQVOPMZÅVIT[MUM[\MZ)TBIZZIL_I[MTMK\ML\W[MZ^MI[ ;\]LMV\-`MK]\Q^M7ٻKMZWN \PM;\]LMV\1V^M[\UMV\.]VL<=¼[
student-managed investment portfolio that stands at more than
UQTTQWV1VNIK\[PMQ[\PMÅZ[\NMUITM\WTMIL\PMOZW]X¹1\¼[ very similar to what I was doing during my internship,” she said. “It’s been a great bridge between my time at Advisory Research IVLÅVQ[PQVOUaLMOZMMI\<=1\¼[IT[WIVPWVWZ\WJM\PMÅZ[\ female chosen to lead the Student Investment Fund.” She took and passed Level I of the Chartered Financial Analyst exam in Syria, and soon hopes to complete Level II. “The courses you take at TU prepare you to study for the CFA exam,” she said. “You get exposed to the material and can practice before taking the exam — it’s very helpful.” Al-Zarrad leaves TU having extended her network by staying involved in organizations like Friends of Finance and participating in TU’s mentorship program. “I’ve met so many great people, and TU has been fantastic. I came here knowing no one, and now I have a huge network.”
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Faculty News Collins Professor of Marketing Saeed Samiee was selected as the 2017 recipient of the American Marketing Associationâ€™s Significant Contributions to Global Marketing Award, also known as the Lifetime Achievement Award. The award is given annually to a global marketing scholar who has made exceptional contributions to the advancement of the global marketing research field and recognizes the best of the best within the field of marketing. Samiee will be honored Aug. 6, 2017 at the AMAâ€™s summer conference.
In November, Tracy Suter, the David and Leslie Lawson Chair in Entrepreneurial Studies, served as chair of the Society for Marketing Advances Doctoral Consortium in Atlanta. As chair, Suter worked to recruit outstanding doctoral candidates and accomplished consortium faculty for the two-day event.
Faculty Publications Patty Bick, Matthew Crook and Brian Walkup, â€œDoes ,Q[\IVKM5I\\MZQV5MZOMZ[IVL)KY]Q[Q\QWV['Âş_Q\P)VLZM_ Lynch. Forthcoming in the Journal of Financial Research.
Matt Crook and Brian Walkup, â€œRankings and Trends in Finance Publishing: An Iterative Approach;â€? Journal of Financial Research!!Âˇ
Robert Russell and Tim UrbanÂš7â€Ť[Ůşâ€ŹM\\QVOQV^MV\WZaZMXTMVishment cycles,â€? European Journal of Operational Research Âˇ
Matt Crook and Brian WalkupÂš<PM+I[MWN \PM=VQLMV\QĂ…ML -VMZOa+WUXIVQM[Âş_Q\P5IZS/ZQâ€Ť\Ůťâ€ŹP[Journal of Finance Case Research
Wen-Chyuan Chiang and Tim Urban, â€œBalancing stochastic two-sided assembly lines,â€? with Chunyong Luo, International Journal of Production ResearchÂˇ
Brian Walkup, â€œA Graphical Approach to Teaching the Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM) in Introductory Finance Courses,â€? Journal of Economics and Finance EducationÂˇ
Mike Troilo, Adrien Bouchet and Tim Urban, â€œPerception, reality, and the adoption of business analytics: Evidence from North American professional sport organizations,â€? with William A. Sutton, Omega â€“The International Journal of Management Science!) Âˇ
Mary Dana Laird, â€œA Development of the Dimensions of Personal Reputation in Organizations,â€? with Robert Zinko and William Gentry, Ed. Peter Stokes. International Journal of Organizational Analysis
Tim Urban and Wen-Chyuan Chiang, â€œDesigning energy-efĂ…KQMV\[MZQITXZWL]K\QWVTQVM["<PM]VXIKML[aVKPZWVW][TQVMJITancing problem,â€? European Journal of Operational Research !Âˇ
24 THE UNIVERSITY OF TULSA
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Akhilesh Bajaj and Wray BradleyÂš-[\QUI\QWVWN ,MĂ…KQMVKa Risk and Prioritization of Information Security Controls: A Data-Centric Approach,â€? with Firoozeh Rahimian, International Journal of Accounting Information Systems Âˇ Lori Leonard, â€œDesired Skills for Entry Level IS Positions: Iden\QĂ…KI\QWVIVL)[[M[[UMV\Âş_Q\P32WVM[IVL/4IVOJournal of Computer Information SystemsÂˇ
Svetlana Orlova The Collins College of Business welcomes Svetlana Orlova as I[[Q[\IV\XZWNM[[WZWN QV\MZVI\QWVITJ][QVM[[IVLÅVIVKM)VI\Q^MWN Russia, Orlova holds a bachelor’s degree in linguistics and worked as an interpreter for Chevron-Kazakhstan’s joint venture before moving \W\PM=;_Q\PPMZP][JIVLL]ZQVO:][[QI¼[ÅVIVKQITKZQ[Q[ Looking to leverage her employment prospects, Orlova enrolled in the MBA program at Northern Arizona University. “I didn’t know _PI\Ua[XMKQITQbI\QWV_W]TLJMJ]\1\WWSIÅVIVKMKTI[[IVLTW^ML Q\º[PM[IQL¹1MVLML]X\ISQVOITTWN \PMOZIL]I\MTM^MTÅVIVKMIVL accounting classes that I could.” Orlova also had the opportunity to take a couple of researchbased classes, which sparked her initial interest in academia. Rather than head straight into a doctoral program, she decided that professional experience would enhance her eventual role as a professor and IKKMX\MLIVWٺMZNZWU1V\MT+WZXWZI\QWVI[I[MVQWZÅVIVKMIVITa[\ after completing the MBA program. Orlova conducted budget and planning analysis for two groups within the commercial contracts division of Intel, and then was XZWUW\ML\W[\ZI\MOQKIVITa[\XZW^QLQVOIVITa\QKITÅVIVKQITXXWZ\ for product and supplier selection decisions as well as contract negotiations. Despite her successful career at Intel, Orlova knew the time was right to return to the classroom and pursue a Ph.D. degree.
She chose Oklahoma State University and after defending her dissertation, accepted a position as visiting professor at Ohio University while she sought a tenure track position. <=ZIVSMLPQOPWVPMZTQ[\WN WٺMZ[ “I had a great feeling after I came for my campus visit,” said Orlova. “Everyone was so collegial and friendly. And my original degree is in linguistics, which Å\[_MTT_Q\P<=¼[QV\MZVI\QWVITJ][QVM[[IVLTIVO]IOM[XZWOZIUº Orlova enjoys integrating her corporate experience into classZWWULQ[K][[QWV[¹1\ITTW_[UM\WMٺMK\Q^MTaZMTI\MPW_ÅVIVKQITIVL economic theories are applied and to demonstrate the importance of ][QVOÅVIVKQITKWVKMX\[NWZ[W]VLJ][QVM[[LMKQ[QWVUISQVOº <PI\JIKSOZW]VLIT[WXZW^M[JMVMÅKQIT\W7ZTW^I¼[ZM[MIZKP MٺWZ\[0MZK]ZZMV\ZM[MIZKP\WXQK[QVKT]LMQV\MZVI\QWVITÅVIVKMIVL \PMK]T\]ZITMٺMK\[WVKI[PPWTLQVO[ She hopes to keep her students engaged by examining current topics reported in publications such as the Wall Street Journal and The Economist. “I want to help students explore those topics in a UWZMQVLMX\P_Ia_PQTMZMTI\QVO\PMU\WÅVIVKQITIVLMKWVWUQK concepts.”
Ben Holman *MV0WTUIV*;*)»!5)KK»LM^MTWXMLIVQV\MZM[\QV learning Spanish as a grade-schooler. In fact, he arrived at school early each morning for extra instruction time. A passion for the language carried Holman through high school and would eventually construct a career path he never could have been imagined. When he chose to attend The University of Tulsa, Holman’s dad (a banker) advised him that majoring in accounting would provide solid job opportunities. Holman couldn’t give up Spanish, though, so he added it as a second major. He jumped at the chance to study abroad in Malaga, Spain, as part of a six-week exchange program the summer of his sophomore year. “I loved the history, the food, the families we lived with and communicating with locals,” he said. Holman would often help the other students when it came to speaking Spanish, which didn’t go unnoticed by Professor Christopher Anderson. He later took Holman on as an undergraduate teaching assistant. In that role, Holman would prepare students for and accompany them on exchange trips. By that time, he had added a minor in international business. During a trip to Argentina his senior year, Holman made connections with employees at Amoco who would one day become his colleagues. Holman began his career as an auditor at Arthur Andersen. “Before I even started my job there, the partners asked me what industry I wanted to work with, and I said oil and gas because of its importance to the global economy.” He was assigned to the Vintage 8M\ZWTM]UIKKW]V\#IVL_PQTMKWVL]K\QVOIJMVMÅ\XTIVI]LQ\QV\PM KWUXIVa¼[<]T[IPMILY]IZ\MZ[WVMLIa0WTUIVPMIZLIVI[[WKQI\M speaking Spanish. He later rode in the elevator with the person he had overheard, and Holman casually mentioned that he also was Æ]MV\QV;XIVQ[P “The next day, Vintage’s controller comes to me and says,
‘Let’s talk about your future.” At that time, Vintage was expanding into South America and the Middle East and had a need for someone with Holman’s background. “Within six months, using the skillset I gained at TU, I was traveling to Ecuador, Yemen and all over the world. Everything I did during college prepared me for that role — the study abroad programs are just invaluable.” After Vintage was sold to Occidental, Holman joined Tulsa-based Williams to work in operations for its subsidiary, Apco Oil and Gas International. Most of Apco’s employees were based in Argentina; and Holman’s in-depth understanding of the industry, coupled with his language and writing skills, allowed him to advance his career and ZMIKP\PMXW[Q\QWVWN KPQMN ÅVIVKQITWXMZI\WZKPQMN IKKW]V\QVOWٻKMZ and controller of Apco. ?PMV?QTTQIU[[X]VWٺQ\[M`XTWZI\QWVIVLXZWL]K\QWV]VQ\\W ?8@QV0WTUIVXXWZ\ML\PMKWUXIVa¼[MٺWZ\[\W[MTTQ\[ controlling stake in Apco. The transaction was completed in January 2015, leaving Holman to contemplate his next move. He said, “After 18 years in the oil and gas industry, I wanted to share my experiences in some way.” A chance meeting with Professor Karen Cravens at TU’s Conference of Accountants took his career in precisely that direction. After completing the Master of Accountancy program at TU, Holman joined the faculty of the School of Accounting and MIS and JMOIV\MIKPQVOIKKW]V\QVOKW]Z[M[QV\PMNITTWN 0MPWXM[\PI\ his experiences inspire other students to pursue unconventional paths within the profession. “Accounting is so much more than debits and credits,” he said. “I want to help students have a broader understanding of accounting career options.”
W I NT E R 2 01 7
According to a 2015 Centers for Disease Control report, more than half a million individuals diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are currently entering adulthood. And while support and resources for children through adolescence have expanded in recent years, what happens when individuals with ASD make the transition to the workplace?
Mary Dana Laird, associate professor of management and 2Mٺ8I]TNWZUMZI[[Q[\IV\XZWNM[[WZWN UIVIOMUMV\IVLMVMZOaQV the Collins College of Business, set out to explore this very topic in a research paper coauthored for a special issue of the Journal of Business and Management dedicated to autism in the workplace. Laird teaches employment law as part of her human resources management class, and exploring the topic of autism in the _WZSXTIKMWٺMZMLI]VQY]MTMV[\PZW]OP_PQKP\W[\]La\PW[M areas. “The statistics regarding autism diagnoses are staggering and as these children grow up and enter the workforce, it changes what we as managers and human resources professionals do,” said Laird. As the father of a child diagnosed with ASD, Paul’s interest in autism research hit close to home. “You don’t hear much about \PQ[\aXMWN ZM[MIZKPQV\PMKWV\M`\WN J][QVM[[IVLQ\XQY]MLUa interest,” he said.
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Laird and Paul sent a proposal to develop a case study based on a TU student’s experience with ASD. The journal liked the case [\]LaIXXZWIKP_PQKP_W]TLTMVLIXMZ[WVITÅZ[\PIVLIKKW]V\ of a young adult navigating his way through the complexities of college life and beyond. <PMaZMY]M[\MLXMZUQ[[QWVNZWU;PQTWP<]VM*;*)¼\W [PIZMPQ[[\WZaI[XIZ\WN \PMZM[MIZKPMٺWZ\<]VMIOZMMLPWXQVO others could learn from his situation and is named as the third coauthor of the paper. “I was pretty interested after Professor Paul explained there wasn’t much research done for people in my age group — college-age students going into a career,” he said. “Most research has gone into much younger people, but this is a lifelong condition, and there should be research covering the whole life.” Expanding awareness of the topic also highlights people who
have experienced ASD their entire lives, but have never had a \MKPVQY]M[\W[MM\PQVO[NZWU\PMQV\MZ^QM_MZ¼[XMZ[XMK\Q^M_PQKP name for it. “This has been slow in coming, but there is now a big helps mitigate his fear of failure. push for more research around this issue,” Paul said. “We need to 1V\PMM^MV\\PI\IVMUXTWaMZM`\MVL[IVWٺMZQVLQ^QL]IT[_Q\P have just as much consideration for older people on the spectrum ASD must evaluate whether to disclose the diagnosis. “There is a JMKI][MXZWJTMU[LWV¼\[\WX_PMVaW]\]ZV!º stigma related to disclosing your diagnosis,” Laird said. He also However, conducting research on autism in the workplace notes that individuals with ASD fall under the Americans with comes with challenges. “People are reluctant to disclose a diagDisabilities Act (ADA), so an employer would need to make any nosis,” said Laird, “and organizations won’t disclose it unless they necessary accommodations in accordance with federal regulations. have permission, so there is very little empirical data. This caseHowever, Laird says many organizations have begun to driven study is just one example, but it gives a perspective on what recognize the value that individuals on the spectrum can bring to someone with ASD experiences.” I_WZSXTIKM¹1VLQ^QL]IT[_Q\P);,TWWSI\\PM_WZTLLQٺMZMV\Ta Autism is a broad term for a group of complex disorders IVL\PMZMQ[OZMI\JMVMÅ\\W\PI\<PMaR][\VMML\PMZQOP\Å\º of brain development, and the subtypes of autism were later When researching potential employers, Tune seeks out autismgrouped together under the umbrella of ASD. Manifestations of friendly businesses. He cites Marvel Comics and Walgreens as );,KIVQVKT]LMLQٻK]T\QM[QV[WKQITQV\MZIK\QWVVWV^MZJITIVL examples of companies that see advantages in the detail-oriented verbal communication and repetitive behaviors. Individuals on nature of individuals who might be more comfortable with repetithe spectrum are distinct, and no one diagnosed with autism has tive or monotonous tasks. characteristics or abilities that match another’s, which also presents <PW]OP<]VMSVW_[PQ[M`XMZQMVKM[IZM]VQY]MPMPWXM[ a challenge for compiling data. that sharing his story can raise awareness for employers, coworkers Tune was diagnosed with autism at age 5, and though he knew and others with autism. “For the research article, I tried to give PM_I[LQٺMZMV\NZWUPQ[XMMZ[PMLQLVW\LQ[KW^MZPQ[LQIOVW[Q[ some advice for others like me,” he said. “Patience has been until nearly 15 years later, during his sophomore year at The really important for me in my life. Sometimes, because of the University of Tulsa. Armed with this new information, Tune could way my mind works, I am way ahead of everyone else. I have to access resources that allowed him to better understand his experibe patient with them and explain things calmly and respectfully ences, particularly when it came to navigating social situations. He so we can be on the same page. Ten minutes later, I could be way NW]VL_WZSJW\PWVIVLWٺ JMPQVLJMKI][MWN UaLQٺMZMV\ campus and also held summer perspective and that person, in internships, which provided turn, has to show me that same concrete experience that patience so I can see what allowed for learning how to they’re talking about. If you’re handle complexities within the patient with others, they will be One in 68 American children is on the workplace. Campus involvepatient with you.” ment gave him opportunities He also says that it’s autism spectrum. (U.S. Centers for to practice interacting with important to stay open to Disease Control and Prevention) others. career possibilities. “Even if However, the job search you get a degree in something Autism is more common among process can prove daunting for [XMKQÅK\PI\UIaVW\JM_PI\ boys than girls. It is estimated that individuals with ASD. After you end up doing in your identifying a job that takes KIZMMZIVL\PI\¼[ÅVM?PI\1 in 42 boys and 1 in 189 girls will be individual strengths and weakever you end up doing should diagnosed with autism in the United nesses into consideration, the be something you really enjoy. States this year. (CDC) next hurdle to overcome is the If an opportunity seems good, interview. Standard interview pursue it.” ASD currently affects 3 million children protocols such as asking about As a result of his particihypothetical situations or how pation in the case study, Tune and adults in the U.S. (CDC) someone handled a situation in has grown more comfortable the past can present challenges discussing his diagnosis. “I’m The prevalence of autism has for individuals with ASD, so proud of the contribution that continued to increase by 10-17 percent extensive preparation is key. I made to this research article, each year, making it one of the fastest Prior to an interview, Tune and that it will be published spends time reviewing the job in such a prestigious journal,” growing developmental disorders. description and his résumé he said. (Autism Speaks) \WUI\KPPQ[[SQTT[\W[XMKQÅK ZMY]QZMUMV\[WN \PMXW[Q\QWV Approximately 40 percent of and then prepares several “Autism at Work: Calvin’s individuals with ASD have average to Y]M[\QWV[\WI[S\PMQV\MZJourney of Living and Working viewer. In the case study, he above average intellectual abilities, with Autism” was published describes the discomfort that including exceptional academic, visual in the Journal of Business and sets in during an interview, Management, Vol. 22, No. 1, and music skills. (Autism Speaks) which he views as a high stakes situation. He uses reframing
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s an audit partner and member of BKD’s national health care group, Carley Williams (BSBA ’98) provides audit and consulting services to hospitals, physicians, medical facilities and other healthcare provider groups. Thanks to the rigorous educational foundation he received in the Collins College of Business, Williams felt prepared to step into the field of public accounting after graduation. As a dedicated alumnus, he’s giving those same opportunities to students in the School of Accounting and CIS. Gifts matched by his employer help fund scholarships for future accounting practitioners, while time spent recruiting and interviewing students, speaking at Beta Alpha Psi meetings and in accounting classes, hosting faculty internships and helping plan TU’s annual Conference of Accountants demonstrates his commitment to the profession.
Gifts like Williams’ make it possible for students to share in the same experiences that helped shape his own success. To make a difference in the life of a TU scholar, please contact Amy Gerald, director of development, at 918-631-3733, or firstname.lastname@example.org.