Honoring an Original

Tomorrow night is our 20th College of Business Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony.  We will induct three alums: Clint Bullock (General Manager and CEO of OUC), Jessica Blume (retired Vice Chairman and board member at Deloitte) and Rick Cardenas (CFO of Darden).  They join a very exclusive club:  The college has more than 60,000 alums and fewer than 80 are in the HOF.  We will also honor some of our young entrepreneurs, honorable and notable Knights and corporate partners who help make us who we are today.  We expect 850 guests.

Every so often though, there is someone whose contributions go way beyond the achievements of those we typically honor at the event.  This brings me to Bob Case.  Bob was a member of FTU’s charter class of 1970.  He graduated with a degree in management and marketing and went on to leadership roles in a number of organizations, including Sears, Roebuck and Company  in its heyday.  That was more than enough to land him in the College’s Hall of Fame in 2002. 

Bob sucks at retirement, so now he is President of Demetree Global. In his spare time, he is on my Dean’s Advisory Board, sits on the Hall of Fame Induction Committee and judges our Great Capstone Case Competition. He ran our Executive Development Center for a few years and helped create the Integrated Business Program. If there is an important task in the College that needs to be done, he is always willing to be part of the solution.  Good thing, because Bob is one of the most insightful and sensible people I know.  After all, he married Jan.

The Hall of Fame is meant to be a celebration of where we come from, who we are and what we aspire to be.  I can think of no one who represents all three of those things better than Bob Case.  In a very real way, his achievements have been our achievements. So, we are honoring him with a Lifetime Achievement Award, not because he’s done, but because both he and the College have barely gotten started….

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