1999 Commerce Alumni Association Awards


Janie and Larry Austermiller just before
 the start of festivities.
The Commerce Appreciation Award was given to Larry L. Austermiller, who earned bachelor's and master's degrees in marketing from Commerce, in 1963 and 1965 respectively, then went on the a highly successful, thirty-year career with Andersen Worldwide. While Austermiller retired from the firm in 1996, he continues to consult for Arthur Andersen, LLP, sharing the expertise developed in his work for the firm in Chicago and Switzerland. His achievements culminated in the post of managing partner, Chicago World Headquarters and managing director, Partner Matters and Expatriate Programs. A loyal friend of the College of Commerce and Business Administration and an active participant in its affairs for many years, he chaired the CBA Business Advisory Council in 1995-96, then worked the following year on development programs in the college and also at the UI Foundation. His devoted efforts in supporting the Andersen Building Campaign, which has the goal of raising money for a new education facility for the college, include his own generous personal gift to the fund. He and wife Janie, who graduated Illinois with a B.S. in education in 1962, live in Inverness and have two grown children, Steve and Julie.

The Distinguished Commerce Alumnus Award was presented to Leonard C. Hoeft. Hoeft, who is chairman of the board of Wm. H. Ziegler Co., Inc., a Caterpillar dealership, graduated Commerce in 1947, with a B.S. in business administration — an especially noteworthy achievement, as his college career, begun at Northern Illinois, was interrupted by military service from 1943 to 1945. After graduating, Hoeft spent eight years with Caterpillar, then joined Ziegler in 1954, becoming president and CEO of the dealership in 1969. When he became part of the concern, there were about one hundred employees and four stores in Minnesota. Under his leadership, Ziegler has grown today to more than 800 employees and fourteen stores. A loyal and enthusiastic supporter of higher education, Leonard Hoeft and his wife Mary Lou have made generous gifts to Commerce, to help establish the Technology and Management Program —a joint program with Engineering — and to endow professorships in both the College of Commerce and the College of Engineering. "As I get older," he has remarked, "I appreciate more and more what the University of Illinois has meant to me. Without the education I got there, I could not have done what I did."
Leonard Hoeft (center) with his daughter Joanne 
Terriquez (left) and Dean Thomas.

Professor Sinow has held undergraduates spellbound since
he joined the CBA faculty in 1989.

The Excellence-in-Teaching Award for Undergraduate Teaching went to David M. Sinow, an adjunct professor of finance, who has held undergraduates spellbound since he joined the CBA faculty in 1989, consistently earning student ratings of 4.7 to 4.8 on a 5.0 scale. He brings to the classroom an extraordinary expertise, for he also serves as CEO of Strategic Capital Management, a company that protects and invests capital for individuals. He is a licensed attorney and a Certified Financial Planner, and he holds B.A., M.A., J.D., and Ph.D. degrees, all from the University of Illinois. One student summed up Sinow's teaching with these words: "Not only was he master of the subject matter and how to deliver it successfully, he was also energetic and enthusiastic. I can easily say Professor Sinow is one of the best teachers I have had.

 

"Dr. Kahn has shared with us a passion, and I appreciate
 the opportunity to have studied with him."

The Excellence-in-Teaching Award for Graduate Teaching was made to Charles M. Kahn, the Bailey Distinguished Chair in Finance and a member of the Commerce faculty since 1988. While his courses are universally acclaimed and his mentoring of doctoral students is regarded as outstanding, it is his performance in MBA 405, Strategic Thinking and Incentives, which won him the award. In designing the course as an elective for the revised MBA integrated core, he used applied game theory to provide what he has described as "a new intellectual framework" that can  be used to examine the world.  One student has noted that: "Professor Kahn's use of current events as clear
 illustrations on how the body of theory he teaches can be applied to both political and commercial scenarios gave a clear sense of urgency about the material being taught." Another student noted, with particular eloquence, that the class had "a level of vigor and excitement that rarely accompanies the study of management, even less the study of decision making . . . . Dr. Kahn has shared with us a passion, and I appreciate the opportunity to have studied with him." Kahn holds a Ph.D. from Harvard and an M.A. from Cambridge, both in economics, and a B.A. in applied mathematics from Harvard. He is a specialist in the economics of information and uncertainty, and his research focuses on the applications of the theory of contracts and incentives to banking and financial intermediation. He joined Commerce as a member of the economics faculty, then moved to finance in 1996.

Two Excellence-in-Teaching Awards for Teaching Assistants are made annually by the Commerce Alumni Association. This year both
 went to doctoral students in accountancy, Cathy Shakespeare and Jon Perkins.

With Cathy Shakespeare's guidance,
students learned to ask provoking questions.

A native of Dublin who has endured with good humor countless jokes about her quintessentially English name, Cathy Shakespeare is a fourth-year doctoral candidate in accountancy. A 1990 honors graduate of Dublin City University, she has worked for Arthur Andersen in Ireland and Chicago. She joined the doctoral program in 1994. Students in her Accountancy 303 class, Institutions and Regulations, have been impressed with her knowledge, teaching style, devotion, patience, enthusiasm, and hard work. Her dry humor and easy-going manner notwithstanding, students are also wont to take note of her professionalism and discipline. "Cathy's confidence and experience were evident," observed one of her undergraduates. "We never felt like we were being taught by anyone less than a professor." Another echoed Cathy Shakespeare's own philosophy in the remarks that "Cathy inspired students to learn more, provided fair working 
 policies, and remained dedicated to students as they studied the course material. With her guidance, students learned to ask provoking questions and understand the underlying motivations of the agencies we studied." Concluded a third student: "Cathy Shakespeare is a teacher who deserves special recognition for her outstanding teaching. Not only were her lectures interesting, they were also stimulating and promoted concept discovery."

Jon Perkins developed a supplement to an accounting textbook that encourages students to spend less time taking notes in class and more time thinking interactively.

 
Jon Perkins is a third-year doctoral student in accountancy. A CPA and member of the Missouri Bar, he holds a J.D. and B.S. degrees in accountancy and in business administration, all from the University of Missouri. Since entering the Illinois doctoral program in 1996, he has shown his commitment to teaching by completing work on his Graduate Teacher Certificate in April 1998. He expects to earn his Advanced Graduate Teacher Certificate next spring. This devotion has been rewarded with excellent ratings from students, ranging from 4.4 to 4.7 on the 5.0 university evaluation scale. To give another illustration of his quest for teaching excellence, he developed a supplement to an accounting textbook that encourages students to spend less time taking notes in class and more time thinking interactively. Praise for his work is typified in the following sampler of student comments and observations: "knowledgeable, positive, and cares about how 
 we are doing in class"; "enthusiastic  about the course"; "very courteous and respectful to the students"; "willing to answer questions"; and "well organized." Students are impressed with the content of the course work and pleased by its relevance. Said one: "I can apply it to other courses I am taking," while another observed that "this course will apply to me in the future, both in business and personal life."