From the Chair, Urton Anderson

The faculty promotion odyssey

One of the most significant events of fall 2010 was the promotion of three Department of Accounting faculty members—Michael Williamson and Volker Laux to associate professor with tenure, and Michael Clement to full professor. Have you ever wondered what’s involved in the process? Basically, a professor’s career is examined under a microscope of multiple exacting eyes, and the scrutiny culminates in a final decision by the UT president. It’s a long and intense odyssey, and as expectations for faculty members continue to rise each year, the promotion process becomes ever more arduous.

Submission of a faculty member for tenure and promotion to associate professor typically comes after six or more years as a faculty member, and promotion to full professor occurs after ten or more years. The candidate’s work over that period is evaluated on three dimensions—scholarship/research, teaching and service. For tenure, the evaluation committee must come to a conclusion that the candidate not only has made contributions of appropriate magnitude and distinction in teaching, research and service, but that there is evidence that he or she can sustain these types of contributions through an extended career with the University. Promotion to full professor also looks at teaching, research and service, but with the additional expectation that the candidate be recognized by leading scholars as a top researcher in his or her area of expertise.

The assessment process is extensive. It begins when the candidate and the department put together evidence of his or her contributions to research. This material is then sent to seven outside reviewers from around the country, who assess the candidate’s standing in his or her field of study. Then, the packet of these recommendations, combined with teaching and service information, makes its way through multiple levels of the University. First, it is reviewed by the executive committee of the department and a vote is taken on whether the candidate should be tenured and/or promoted. If the vote is favorable, the department chair makes his or her evaluation and recommendation, which is added to the file with the executive committee’s vote. The packet is then forwarded to a college promotion advisory committee, composed of five senior faculty members, one from each department. This committee also votes on whether the candidate should be promoted and/or tenured. The dean is the next person to evaluate the information and then make a recommendation to the University president. At the University level, the packets are reviewed by the president, the provost, the vice president for research, the vice provost and dean of graduate studies, and the dean of undergraduate studies. This group meets with the dean of the McCombs School to discuss each candidate and makes their decision. The president makes his or her final decision based on the discussions of this group.

The final verdict is more than three months coming, and more than twenty-four people review each candidate’s file! We’re proud and gratified that those twenty-four folks agree with us that Professors Clement, Laux and Williamson add value to the educational experience of our McCombs School students, as well as to the world of accounting research. Please join me in congratulating them on this formidable accomplishment.

Accounting Times Goes Green- Electronic version now available!

Welcome to the new online Accounting Times newsletter! The electronic version contains all content in the paper version, and the Accounting Times webpage will also include a printable file for each issue.

If you choose this option, you’ll receive an e-mail twice a year to alert you when the new issue is available on the Web, and you’ll no longer receive a mailed paper version.

If you would like opt in to reading the Accounting Times online, please e-mail with the words OPT IN as the subject line. In the body of your e-mail, please type your full name. No other message is necessary.

Also, to make sure your contact information (including e-mail address) is current, take a moment to go to and you can update it online, quickly and easily. Or, drop us an e-mail with your updated information.

As always, thank you for your support of our great McCombs Accounting programs. We hope you’ll join us as we go green with the new online Accounting Times.

MPA Students Volunteer Tax Knowledge to Help Austin Community

From The University of Texas KNOW Website

Every year at the McCombs School of Business, Brian Lendecky teaches his students accounting skills through hands-on community volunteerism. His students use their in-depth tax knowledge to help low-income families get the most out of their tax returns.

As part of the curriculum, students complete 55 volunteer hours working with Community Tax Centers, a Foundation Communities program that partners with the Internal Revenue Service to implement the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program for low-income filers.

This year more than 210 students have taken Lendecky’s class to learn how to prepare taxes for deserving families. That’s nearly 50 percent of all volunteer tax preparers.

In 2009, volunteers at Community Tax Centers helped more than 17,000 people prepare their taxes. With the help of UT students, low-income families claimed more than $27 million in refunds and credits. You can get an inside look at our students in action, and see how feel about the experience, watch the great video by Christopher Palmer at .

Liz Yant, BBA ’77, MPA ’78, Inducted into the McCombs Hall of Fame

Elizabeth Yant, BBA ’77, MPA ’78, longtime member of the Department of Accounting and Dean’s Advisory Councils and winner of the Texas Star award, was recently the recipient of the highest honor bestowed by the McCombs School: she was one of three winners of the 2008-09 McCombs Hall of Fame award. Her fellow awardees were James Huffines, BBA ’73 and Joel Staff, BBA ’67.

Yant, a partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers in Houston, has more than 30 years of experience specializing in international and domestic taxation of multinational, mid-cap and start-up companies. She also has built and managed several tax and legal consulting practices. She is the firm’s relationship partner on one of the world’s leading oil and gas companies leading a team of business advisory as well as tax specialists. She also serves as engagement tax partner for several energy, services and investment fund clients.

She leads PricewaterhouseCoopers’ recruiting efforts at The University of Texas at Austin. “Liz is passionate about the success of the McCombs School, and her commitment is reflected in the abundance of time and support she has given to our activities over many years,” said Stephen Limberg, McCombs accounting professor. “This is especially impressive given Liz’s high and consuming leadership role in PricewaterhouseCoopers.”

Yant serves on the steering committee of the Greater Houston Partnership Executive Women’s Partnership Committee. She has been involved in many community not-for-profit activities in the U.S. and abroad.

Professor Florence Atiase Named TSCPA Outstanding Accounting Educator

Florence Atiase, McCombs Department of Accounting lecturer, has received the Texas Society of CPAs’ (TSCPA) Outstanding Accounting Educator Award for 2009. The award honors those who have demonstrated excellence in teaching and have distinguished themselves through active service to the accounting profession.

Ms. Atiase fits the profile perfectly. Since joining the McCombs faculty in 1993, she has taught a variety of courses at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, including introductory financial and managerial accounting, intermediate financial accounting and financial statement analysis.

Her dedication as a teacher is reflected in her students’ comments on her teaching evaluations. “She explains things really well,” one student wrote, “making a very difficult subject accessible to all students.”  Other comments characterize her as “a hard but a compassionate and dedicated teacher” and “one of the best professors I have had at UT so far.”

In 2001, she received the President’s Service Award in appreciation for exceptional dedication and service to the TSCPA’s Austin chapter. In 2007 she also received the CPA of the Year – Industry, Government and Education award from the Austin CPA Chapter of the TSCPA.

Ms. Atiase has done a lot of work to promote diversity, both within the McCombs community and the accounting profession.  She serves as a member of the TSCPA’s Diversity and Inclusiveness Committee and as faculty advisor to the University chapter of the National Association of Black Accountants. Since 1994, she has been the faculty coordinator/instructor and facilitator of the McCombs Accounting Career Awareness Program summer camp for underrepresented high school students interested in a career in accounting. In recent years, 90 percent of former ACAP participants have enrolled as University of Texas business majors.

Urton Anderson, professor and chair of the Department of Accounting, says, “Florence is truly an outstanding member of the accounting profession who has done much to pass on the values of the profession to a new generation of CPAs.” Ms. Atiase joins former McCombs TSCPA Outstanding Educator Award winners Professors Anna Fowler, Michael Granof, Ray Sommerfeld (deceased) and Ed Summers.

The Secret of Our Success: Support From Our Donors and Friends

We are proud to acknowledge here the generous donors who contributed to the Department of Accounting between September 1, 2008 and August 31, 2009. With their help, we’ve once again achieved our goal of being the top accounting program in the nation. McCombs accounting students, faculty and staff offer our sincere thanks to these alumni and friends whose support makes us No. 1.
Corporate and Foundation

  • Accenture Foundation Inc.
  • AT&T Inc. Foundation
  • BP Amoco Oil
  • Cemex Foundation Inc.
  • Chevron Corporation
  • Deloitte Foundation
  • Ernst & Young Foundation
  • Fidelity Foundation
  • GE Foundation
  • Genworth Foundation
  • Global Impact/Cisco
  • Grant Thornton Foundation
  • Homebuilding Community Foundation/Kimball Hill Homes
  • Jackson National Life Insurance Company
  • KPMG Foundation
  • Madison Charitable Foundation Inc.
  • Marathon Oil Company
  • PricewaterhouseCoopers Foundation
  • PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP
  • Raytheon Charitable Gift Fund
  • Ryan Inc.
  • Shell Oil Company
  • Shell Oil Company Foundation
  • Aubrey Smith Family Foundation
  • UHY Advisors TX LLC

$10,000 and over

  • Class of 1968
    • Mr. and Mrs. William P. O’Hara
  • Class of 1978
    • Mr. Craig B. Robertson
  • Class of 1982
    • Mr. Andrew F. Jacobs
    • Mr. Marc D. Levy
  • Class of 1983
    • Ms. Kathleen W. Farlow
  • Class of 1985
    • Ms. Norma L. Petrosewicz
  • Friends
    • Mr. William J. Ihlanfeldt

$5,000 to $9,999

  • Class of 1974
    • Mr. H. Douglas Bogart
    • Mr. John L. Kuhlman, Jr.
  • Class of 1977
    • Mr. Paul M. Kearns
  • Class of 1982
    • Mr. Jeffrey B. Ulbright
  • Class of 1983
    • Mr. Paul J. Knopp
    • Mr. Mark T. Lindig
  • Class of 1985
    • Mrs. Wendy B. Poole
  • Class of 1989
    • Mr. Michael T. Kelley
  • Class of 1993
    • Mr. Forrest E. Oglesbee

$1,000 to $4,999

  • Class of 1957
    • Mr. Charles A. Baker
  • Class of 1962
    • Mr. David G. Pope
  • Class of 1969
    • Mr. H. William Hardy
    • Mr. Charles R. Steadman
    • James M. and Linda L. Williams
  • Class of 1970
    • Mr. Reed G. Wood
  • Class of 1972
    • Mr. Donald E. Wagner
  • Class of 1973
    • Mr. Hansell N. York III
  • Class of 1974
    • Mr. William K. Wheeler
  • Class of 1975
    • Mr. John K. Bywaters
    • Mr. David L. King
    • Mr. John S. Worth
  • Class of 1976
    • Mr. Bryan D. Handley
  • Class of 1977
    • Mr. C. Wade Brannan
  • Class of 1978
    • Mr. Larry J. Haynes
    • Ms. Vicki G. Keiser, C.P.A.
    • Mr. Chris K. Kunz
    • Mr. David W. Leeds
  • Class of 1979
    • Mr. E. R. Giesinger, Jr.
    • Mrs. Denise A. Green, C.P.A.
  • Class of 1980
    • Mr. Michael R. Einspahr, C.P.A.
  • Class of 1981
    • Mr. Robert J. Goldberg
    • Mrs. Shari F. Stein
    • Mr. Jonathan G. Weaver
  • Class of 1982
    • Mr. Patrick A. Hyek
    • Mr. Darin A. McNelis
    • Ms. Sheri P. Toivonen
  • Class of 1983
    • Mr. Daniel O. Chesnut
    • Mr. David Dickson
    • Mr. James W. Vick
  • Class of 1984
    • Mr. Michael D. Moore
  • Class of 1985
    • Mr. Michael J. Blue
    • Mr. Ricky L. Richter
  • Class of 1987
    • Mr. Daniel P. Hudgens
  • Class of 1988
    • Mr. Scott R. Bub
    • Mr. Phillip A. Bullock
  • Class of 1989
    • Mr. Darrell L. McKown
  • Class of 1990
    • Mr. Craig B. Allen
    • Mr. Gerry L. Ridgely, Jr.
  • Class of 1991
    • Mr. Stephen T. Dabney
  • Class of 1992
    • Mr. Mark J. Bell
    • Mrs. Karen G. Blake
    • Mr. G. Wyndham Smith, Jr.
  • Class of 1993
    • Mr. Eric W. Hornsten
    • Jennifer I. Jordan
    • Mrs. Amy A. King
    • Mrs. Glenna B. Sharafeldin
  • Class of 1994
    • Mr. Tate K. Anderson
    • Mr. Gregory T. Endo
    • Mr. Joel W. Hermes
  • Class of 1995
    • Mr. Joseph J. Allen
  • Class of 1996
    • Ms. Katrina A. Kimpel
  • Class of 1998
    • Ms. Paula A. Montoya, C.P.A.
  • Class of 2000
    • Mr. Zachary C. Peek
  • Class of 2002
    • Mr. Kevin M. Zubel Friends
    • Ms. Amy W. Chronis
    • Mr. Manuel J. Fernandez
    • Mr. David A. Hayob
    • William R. Kinney, Jr., Ph.D.
    • Mr. Charles B. Randolph
    • Mr. Virgil Wade
    • Mr. Dennis T. Whalen

$500 to $999

  • Class of 1967
    • Mr. R. W. Fairchild, Jr.
  • Class of 1975
    • Mr. Mark E. Weiss
  • Class of 1976
    • Mr. Richard D. Trubitt
  • Class of 1977
    • Ms. Julie Cahoon
    • Mr. Peter M. Juve
  • Class of 1979
    • Mr. William M. Samuels
  • Class of 1982
    • Mr. John Bober
    • Mr. Thomas J. Edgeller
    • Robert M. Topp
  • Class of 1983
    • Ms. Leann F. Balbona
  • Class of 1984
    • Mr. Kevin J. Ryan
    • Mr. Ron D. Willis
    • Mr. Jon Alan Wolkenstein
  • Class of 1985
    • Ms. Mary B. Carlson
  • Class of 1986
    • Mrs. Judith K. Goldberg
  • Class of 1988
    • Mr. John D. Christian
    • Ms. Jean D. White
  • Class of 1989
    • Mrs. Georgene G. Britz
    • Ms. May Lin
  • Class of 1993
    • Nina X. Wang
  • Class of 1994
    • Mr. Jeffrey A. Deatsman
    • Mr. Gavin T. Roy
  • Class of 1995
    • Mr. John R. Boettiger, Jr.
    • Ms. Nichole A. Jordan
    • Mr. Brian L. Lightle
  • Class of 1996
    • Ms. L. Melisa Ware-McEwen
  • Class of 1997
    • Mr. Jason Thomas Rash
  • Class of 2000
    • Ms. Anna T. Szurgot
  • Class of 2002
    • Mr. Matthew M. Zagotti
  • Class of 2004
    • Mr. Timothy B. Brown Friends
    • Mrs. Delta A. Emerson
    • Mr. Scott Fields
    • Ms. Malinda P. Gerich
    • Mr. John W. Steffes
    • Mr. Thomas W. Watson

$250 to $499

  • Class of 1971
    • Mr. James L. Persky
  • Class of 1978
    • Mr. Douglas R. Wilkins
  • Class of 1982
    • Mr. Frederick I. Cohen
    • Mrs. Necia A. Dexter
    • Mr. Patrick A. Dunnahoo
    • Mrs. Delphine M. Swierc
  • Class of 1983
    • Mrs. Kelly A. Biar
  • Class of 1985
    • Ms. Annette E. Espinoza
  • Class of 1986
    • Mr. Bryan R. Lee
    • Mr. Daryl E. Raiford
  • Class of 1987
    • Mr. David Joe
  • Class of 1988
    • Ms. Sandra J. Vetter
  • Class of 1991
    • Mr. Steve T. Lyman
  • Class of 1992
    • Ms. Celia D. Cook
    • Mr. Mark H. Malooly
  • Class of 1993
    • Mr. Patrick C. O’Shea
  • Class of 1995
    • Mr. Miguel Carrillo
    • Mr. Jeffrey M. Hoffmann
    • Mr. Andrew E. Kostas
  • Class of 1997
    • Mr. William A. Wilson
  • Class of 1998
    • Ms. Heather H. Gaven
  • Class of 1999
    • Mark J. Kohlbeck, Ph.D.
    • Mr. Adam R. Oglesby
  • Class of 2000
    • Mr. Seth A. Abrams
    • Ms. Danae M. Dietiker
  • Class of 2001
    • Mr. B. Clinton Rain
  • Class of 2005
    • Mr. Yen-Po Lin Friends
    • Ms. Chia-Ling Chen
    • Ms. Wei-Chen Chiu
    • Mr. James H. Forson
    • Mr. Justin Gannon
    • Ms. Tiffany B. Kice
    • Ms. Erika Kozlowski
    • Mr. Jon A. Unroe

Up to $249

  • Class of 1966
    • Mr. M. Phillip Jenkins
  • Class of 1969
    • Mr. John C. Lere
  • Class of 1970
    • Mr. R. Scott Hood, C.P.A.
    • Mrs. Carol L. Willingham
  • Class of 1971
    • J. T. Ball, Ph.D.
  • Class of 1972
    • Mr. James R. Mobley
  • Class of 1975
    • Mr. William W. Lesikar
  • Class of 1976
    • Mr. Royce B. Thompson, Jr., C.P.A.
    • Mrs. Patsy T. Waldrop
  • Class of 1978
    • Mr. Mark L. Steadman
  • Class of 1979
    • Craig E. Reese, Ph.D.
  • Class of 1980
    • Mr. Fred H. Beerman
    • Mrs. Mary S. Dugan
  • Class of 1981
    • Ms. Delia A. Cervantes
    • Amy E. Dunbar and John D. Phillips
    • Mrs. Yu-Ju C. Sher
  • Class of 1982
    • Mrs. Sara H. Fox
  • Class of 1983
    • Mr. Richard K. Dyo
    • Ms. Nancy E. Wagner
  • Class of 1984
    • Miss Rebel G. Quillin, C.P.A.
  • Class of 1985
    • Mr. Kenny H. Leung
    • Mr. Brian H. Satterfield
  • Class of 1987
    • Mr. Charles L. Allen
    • Mrs. Ann S. Yett
  • Class of 1988
    • Mr. Edward G. Cackoski
  • Class of 1990
    • Craig E. Lefanowicz, Ph.D.
    • Ms. Sally W. Seelig
    • Ms. Kara P. Teuscher
    • John H. Williams, Ph.D.
  • Class of 1991
    • Mr. W. Andrew Bruner
    • Mrs. Lisa F. Stephens
  • Class of 1992
    • Mr. Stephen D. Brown
    • Mr. Robert M. Notley III
  • Class of 1993
    • Mr. Jason M. Belew
    • Mr. Joseph E. Huber
    • Mr. Thomas J. Palmisano
    • Mr. Robert L. Schock
  • Class of 1994
    • Mr. Steven J. Javinsky
    • Mrs. Laura M. Wilson
  • Class of 1995
    • Ms. Tracy L. Benedict
    • Mrs. Mary Q. Birnesser
    • Ms. Dengxiang Tan
  • Class of 1996
    • Ms. Saskia I. Fiallos Izurieta
    • Ms. Meredith A. Starr
  • Class of 1997
    • Mrs. Shannon Y. Horine
    • Mr. Christopher P. Ma
  • Class of 1998
    • Mr. Brian L. Fowler
    • Mr. Adam R. Hickey
    • Mr. Stephen D. Homan
    • Mr. Chetan C. Raniga
    • Mr. Maximilian T. Seewann
  • Class of 1999
    • Ms. Ann M. Marotta
    • Ms. Mindi L. McDaniel
    • Mr. Chinh X. Nguyen
  • Class of 2000
    • Ms. Pamela B. Dewey
    • Mr. Stephen T. Moose
    • Mr. A. Reed Swearingen
  • Class of 2001
    • Mr. Jason A. Coen
    • Ms. Alyssa M. Constant
    • Mrs. Rachel D. Ramon
  • Class of 2002
    • Ms. Katherine L. Jett
  • Class of 2003
    • Mrs. Laura M. Pinon
    • Mr. Kenneth P. Smith
  • Class of 2004
    • Mrs. Sarah L. Cyphers
    • Ms. Courtney A. Davidson
    • Mrs. Kara Y. Dudley, C.P.A.
    • Mr. Justin N. Jette
    • Mr. Pedro Noyola III
  • Class of 2005
    • Ms. Stephanie B. Brand
    • Ms. Anne D. Martin
    • Mr. Denzil R. Rogers
    • Ms. Sarah E. Sederholm
  • Class of 2006
    • Mr. Michael A. Cadena
    • Mr. Joshua E. Clifford
    • Mr. Kyle A. Coots
    • Mr. Jeffrey Alan Hoffman
    • Mr. Trey W. Tschirhart
    • Mr. Yeohoon Yoon
  • Class of 2007
    • Mr. G. Terence Balagia, Jr.
    • Mr. William Fred Fleming, Jr.
    • Mr. Ford A. Halbardier
    • Ms. Heidi A. Hicks
    • Ms. Duan Liu
    • Mr. Jurgen W. Oosthuizen
    • Mr. Grant R. Stanis
  • Class of 2008
    • Mr. Dimitrios T. Antoniou
    • Ms. Sirynda Charnsangavej
    • Ms. Carey L. Dalton
    • Ms. Eun J. Ji
    • Ms. Riley A. Rogers
    • Mr. Reid J. Schellhous
    • Mr. Zachary C. Schulte
    • Ms. Laura E. Thompson
    • Ms. Stacy D. Wages
    • Mr. Scott M. Warshaw Friends
    • Ms. Sherri W. Greenwood
    • Lillian F. Mills, Ph.D.
    • Mr. David Rohlmeier
    • Mrs. Deborah S. Scanlon
    • Mr. Gregory S. Sissel
    • Mrs. S. Lorraine Strowd
    • Ms. Christina W. Thetford
    • Mr. Greg Usry
    • Ms. Selina D. Wilbur
    • Mrs. Lisa W. Wilson

Lyra Burgess, BBA ’10, MPA ’10: Master of Metamorphosis

Lyra Burgess graduated with BBA and MPA degrees this spring. Considering the panache with which she’s handled the phases and changes of her life so far, she also deserves a master’s of metamorphosis.

At 16, Burgess left a troubled home life to travel the country with a Renaissance festival. Outfitted in a corset, flowing skirt and petticoats, she sewed medieval costumes, managed sales and inventoried merchandise for a clothier. “The Renaissance festival was a great support network of people, and a fascinating adventure for a teenager,” Burgess reminisces.

As the festival made stops in Texas, Colorado and Michigan, Burgess home-schooled herself throughout high school. When she retired from the festival circuit at 18, she was armed with newfound confidence, street smarts and the education to carry her toward her next goal: a college degree.

Settled back in Austin, Burgess got a job conducting public opinion polls for the Gallup Organization. “I can talk to just about anybody, so I was pretty good at it,” she laughs. When Gallup’s Austin office closed, she waitressed while looking for a trade that would give her the financial stability and flexibility for college. With a lifelong interest in fashion and beauty, she settled on cosmetology school.

After graduating and getting licensed, the then-24-year-old Burgess built a loyal client base. Working closely with the salon owner, she was surprised to discover that she enjoyed the business aspect even more than styling hair. Suddenly it clicked for her—she wanted to earn a business degree.

But she had niggling doubts about her ability to thrive at UT and McCombs. “I’d been away from school for so long, and I thought it was way too big, too serious, and that as an older student, it would be hard for me to cope,” Burgess says.

As fate would have it, Cole Holmes and CeCe Ridder of the McCombs Undergraduate Programs Office were among Burgess’ clients at the salon. As she snipped their hair and talked of her misgivings, they assured her she had what it took to make it at McCombs. Bolstered by their encouragement, she applied and was accepted as an undergraduate business student.

Burgess never imagined she’d find a passion for accounting—until she took Professor Florence Atiase’s Fundamentals in Accounting class. “She’s an amazing professor, and I discovered there was something about accounting that made sense to the way my brain works,” Burgess says. “I visualized it as the heart of business, pumping blood—money and resources—throughout the organism.”

Conversations with Professor David Platt ranging from the practical to the philosophical sealed her decision to apply to the MPA program. “For me, one of the most significant things about the program is that the professors are mentors in real-life matters, not just career plans. They are amazing people.”

She continued to do hair throughout her undergraduate coursework, but in anticipation of the rigorous MPA curriculum, Burgess set aside her scissors. “The trick is to learn how to be successful and still have a good quality of life. That’s the ultimate challenge, and I have started to learn how during this program,” Burgess says.

It’s a skill that will come in handy this fall, when Burgess begins a one-year postgraduate technical assistantship with the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB). Competition for the internships is intense, with only three applicants selected nationwide each year.

Platt says, “Lyra is a great choice for the GASB internship because she is not afraid to grapple with difficult conceptual issues – she was always the one who asked the tough questions in class.”

Burgess’ unusual career evolution has been a combination of gumption and fortune, and of heeding signs along the way. “After learning about the GASB assistantship, I got that same ‘ding’ I had when I decided on the MPA program, that inner sense that it was the right thing to do,” she explains.

Though her path has been roundabout, Burgess says she has no regrets. “Follow your heart and your passion; that’s the only way to live, and it usually works out.”

Southwest Airlines CEO Tells MPA Grads What it Takes to be a Leader

In his commencement speech for the Masters of Professional Accounting ceremony May 20, Gary Kelly, BBA ’77, chairman, president and CEO of Southwest Airlines, described five characteristics he believes leaders must exhibit: 1. Leaders must care. “Leadership is about people. Period. Great leadership is about inspiring people, serving people, caring for people, caring about people. You have to tell them you care.” More.

Letter from Former Chair Urton Anderson

As Accounting Department Chair, I was charged with helping to ensure that the accounting program retained its accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). The University of Texas McCombs School of Business is one of the only 5% of business schools worldwide that has achieved AACSB accreditation. Of these 607 schools, only 175 accounting programs are accredited. More.

Fred Phillips Honored With Prestigious National Teaching Award

Fred Phillips, Ph.D. ’96, was honored with Canada’s annual 3M National Teaching Fellowship in February. Sponsored by the Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education and 3M Canada, the fellowship honors Canadian university professors who exhibit “the highest ideals of teaching excellence and scholarship,” according to the award’s website. More.