March marked the 47th year that the College of Business family has met in Chicago to honor the achievements of outstanding faculty and College of Business alumni at the annual Spring Luncheon. This year’s audience included more than 600 individuals, the largest crowd in attendance to date.
Mark E. Peecher, Deloitte & Touche teaching fellow and professor of accountancy, received the Excellence-in-Teaching Award for Graduate Teaching. Peecher teaches assurance, financial-statement auditing, and doctoral seminars on behavioral research. He also conducts behavioral and psychological accounting research and has demonstrated a commitment to lifelong learning. He cares deeply about students learning, and he never stops learning himself.
Jeffrey R. Brown, associate professor of finance and a Julian Simon Memorial faculty fellow, was honored for his passion for teaching and service with the Excellence-in-Teaching Award for Undergraduate Teaching. Besides his full teaching schedule and the mentor role he takes with students, Brown is a presidential appointee to the U.S. Social Security Advisory Board. He teaches courses in employee benefits planning and financial economics.
James C. Cook, director of the Ernst & Young Global Consumer Products Center and accountancy alumnus, received the College of Business Appreciation Award. Over the course of his career that includes 35 years with Ernst & Young, Cook has developed a deep understanding of global business issues. He also has a long track record of service to the College of Business and the University.
Retired chairman and CEO of AT&T Wireless Services John D. Zeglis received the College of Business Distinguished Alumnus Award. Zeglis is a finance alumnus and is noted for his role as president of AT&T prior to the spin-off of AT&T Wireless in 2000.
Zeglis has been an active supporter of the University of Illinois throughout his career.
Keynote speaker and accountancy alumna Jocelyn Carter-Miller welcomed the Illini crowd to a rousing response. She shared highlights of her 20-year successful marketing career and her personal philosophy along the way that included what she calls the three R’s of life: Reclaiming dreams, reinventing one’s self and rewarding one’s self and community.
“Learn to recognize your own three R’s and honor them,” she advised. Apply resourcefulness and resistance when needed, and may you receive all that this wonderful life has to offer you,” she advised.
Dean Avijit Ghosh concluded the luncheon with his remarks on higher education and the future of the College of Business. He noted that the fall of 2008 will mark an important milestone when the College completes construction of the new Business Instructional Facility and use of its classrooms are underway. Ghosh called the pending milestone a true renaissance, and attributed its development to the College family of alumni and friends. "Winston Churchill said, 'We shape a building, and afterwards our buildings shape us.'"