Post by Dean Jim Jiambalvo, adapted from the current Foster Business magazine.

As you read this, I’ll be packing up my dean’s office in Dempsey Hall, and moving to a faculty office in PACCAR. And as I reflect on the past 14 years, I must say that being dean of the UW Foster School of Business has been the highlight of my career—fulfilling, stimulating, and enjoyable beyond what I imagined.

Jim and Cheryl Jiambalvo

People are the reason the position has been so enjoyable. My wife, Cheryl, and I have met the most wonderful alumni and supporters—people who contributed to the school financially and by sharing their time, energy and talent on advisory boards, as mentors to students, and as guest speakers in classes.

With their help, we’ve built outstanding facilities and worked hard to ensure the classroom and experiential-learning experiences were second to none. Our mantra has been that we’re going to be The Best Public Business School in the United States. And “best” is defined in terms of a transformational learning experience. Whether we are the single best business school in the U.S. is debatable, but what’s not debatable is that we are in the set of premier schools. That was a dream 14 years ago, and it’s a reality today.

If you’ll allow me to brag a bit, I think I contributed to advancing the Foster School by doing two things well: I made good faculty and staff appointments, and I listened to the advice I received. We have many, many outstanding faculty and staff dedicated to the success of the school. Over the years they’ve made numerous suggestions for important program initiatives and ways to improve our processes. I listened to them and their ideas made a major difference in Foster’s success.

The next dean, as many of you know, is Frank Hodge. He will be terrific in this role. I’ve been fortunate to know Frank and his wife, Abby, for almost 20 years. Frank is an outstanding researcher, a tremendously accomplished teacher and, in his role as chair of the Department of Accounting, he has demonstrated that he is a great administrator.

Now, I’m looking forward to travel with Cheryl and spending more time with my grandchildren. And I hope to stay in touch with the many Foster supporters who have played such an important part in my life and the life of the school. Finally, I’ll look forward to reading future issues of Foster Business magazine and following the Foster Blog documenting the activities of a community focused on ensuring the great Northwest is home to one of the finest business schools in the nation.

With warm regards to all,

James Jiambalvo
Orin & Janet Smith Dean
UW Foster School of Business