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Letter from the Chair - June 2016

Steve Gilbert PicAs we wrap up the 2015-16 academic year, it is time to reflect on the past year and to look forward to what is to come. As you know, we lost our long-time friend and colleague, Professor Rueben McDaniel, this past February. He held the Charles and Elizabeth Prothro Regents Chair in Health Care Management, and was the founding coordinator of the McCombs Health Care Initiative. Professor McDaniel was highly regarded as an innovative and influential member of the faculty, as evidenced by his many awards, including: 2013 Texas Ten - Ex-Student's Association Most Influential Professors; 2012 Marquis Who's Who in Medicine and Healthcare; 2004 Civitatis Award for Outstanding Faculty Citizenship. He will be missed.

With the end of the academic year, we also bade farewell to Bruce White, who retired from teaching after several great years of service to the IROM department. We are grateful to Bruce for his willingness to go the extra mile to participate in extra-curricular events, mentor students, etc. He recently was recognized by the Residence Hall Association as the “Faculty Mentor of the Year” for his service to Jester Residence Hall. Although we will miss Bruce, we wish him well as he enters a well-deserved retirement.

This Spring, the IS group in the IROM Department organized the Workshop on Social and Business Analytics that was held on April 29. Although conferences on Business Analytics have proliferated over the past several years, ours was unique in bringing together top researchers and practitioners in the same orbit to debate and discuss the cutting edge in business analytics. The effort to organize the conference was spear-headed by Professor Anitesh Barua, and was by all measures a huge success.

We wrapped up the Spring Semester by graduating 115 undergraduates in MIS and another 76 in Supply Chain Management. Both of these majors are continuing to attract students, and there appears to be a healthy appetite for our graduates among employers.

Looking toward the Fall, we are excited to have two new faculty members joining us. Ioannis (Yannis) Stamatopoulos will be joining our faculty in Operations Management as an Assistant Professor. Yannis received his Ph.D. from the Kellogg School at Northwestern University, and was one of the most sought after graduates on the market this year. We are also looking forward to the arrival of Caryn Conley, who will be joining us as a lecturer for the MIS program. Caryn earned her BBA in Business Honors and MIS at the McCombs School, and later completed her PhD in Information Systems at NYU’s Stern School of Management. Most recently, she has been teaching at Florida Atlantic University. We are all looking forward to having these two new faculty members join us.

Of course we could not do what we do without the support of our alumni and our industrial partners. We look forward to seeing you the next time that you are on campus.

Stephen M. Gilbert
Sam P. Woodson, Jr. Centennial Memorial Professor in Business
Chair of the Department of Information, Risk, and Operations Management
McCombs School of Business
The University of Texas at Austin