Rutgers University President Richard L. McCormick, Chancellor Steven J. Diner, Rutgers Business School Dean Glenn Shafer, the Rutgers Board of Governors and Prudential Financial Chairman and CEO John R. Strangfeld honored Dr. Jerome D. Williams on the occasion of his Investiture as the first professor to hold the Prudential Chair in Business.
Rutgers President Richard McCormick (left) presents a certificate commemorating the Prudential Chair in Business Investiture to Dr. Jerome Williams. (Photo: Business Wire)
Appointed to the Chair a year ago, Dr. William’s investiture ceremony – the first ever held in Newark – was held at Rutgers Business School’s 1 Washington Park building in Newark on Tuesday, September 27. In addition to Rutgers administration, faculty and Prudential employees, Dr. Williams was joined by his wife of 42 years, five children, and nine grandchildren – age two months to 16 years.
The Prudential Chair in Business, which has a $3 million endowment, was part of a $5 million pledge that Prudential made in 2007 to Rutgers. The remaining $2 million was used to create the Rutgers Business School Institute for Ethical Leadership (IEL). Prudential’s intent in endowing the Chair was to support the strengthening of both curriculum and research in the areas of business ethics and entrepreneurship, twin goals that dovetail with Prudential’s commitment to urban renewal and its belief in the vital importance of thriving urban communities.
Dr. Williams, who joined the Rutgers Business School faculty in 2010, is a Professor of Management & Global Business. He is also the Research Director of The Center for Urban Entrepreneurship & Economic Development (CUEED), whose programs integrate venture capital, city resources and university research to study and promote economic development and entrepreneurship in disadvantaged and minority communities.
"First, the investiture is an opportunity to once again thank Prudential for its generous support of what we believe to be two very important undertakings,” said Dean Shafer. "It is a signal honor to have Prudential, a company with a long history of successful global business development and exemplary business values, as our partner in building Rutgers into a premiere business school.
"Second, the investiture is an occasion to honor an accomplished a scholar, a devoted mentor, and a courageous educator with a long and illustrious career dedicated to addressing issues of social justice. Dr. Williams believes that a business school should endow students with certain ethical and humanitarian values that hopefully make them reach for greatness. These are quite simply values that, as they ripple out of the business environment, create a better society.”
In remarks delivered at the investiture, Prudential Chairman and CEO John R. Strangfeld said, "Dr. Williams’ efforts at the Center for Urban Entrepreneurship & Economic Development have created leading edge scholarly work incorporating many fields, developing resources to renew economic growth and vitality through urban entrepreneurship. Mixing pragmatism with academic curiosity, Dr. Williams is well positioned to support the urban entrepreneur whose world – literally and figuratively – may have no borders except their own imagination.”
Dr. Williams said, "The Prudential Chair will help further my research in such areas as urban entrepreneurship, small business development, marketing to multi-cultural customers, and discriminatory practices in the banking industry. The material I cover deals with multiculturalism, diversity, ethics, morals, and social responsibility as they relate to marketing and advertising. As for my students, I want them to feel that being in my class is not just an experience for a semester, but for a lifetime, and that the skills they’ve gained can make a difference in transforming people’s lives for the better.”
During his career, Dr. Williams has held positions at Howard University School of Business and Wharton Business School, and he has also taught at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, and Georgia State University. Prior to joining Rutgers Business School, Dr. Williams was the F.J. Heyne Centennial Professor, Department of Advertising, at the University of Texas at Austin, where he also held a joint appointment in the Center for African and African American Studies.
Dr. Williams has been appointed to the Evaluation Assessment Committee of the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation, a CEO-led organization partnering with First Lady Michelle Obama, which is undertaking to a multi-year program aimed at helping reduce childhood obesity by 2015. He was a member of the Institute of Medicine’s Committee on Food Marketing and Diets of Children and Youth that published the report "Food Marketing to Children and Youth: Threat or Opportunity?” The study was requested by Congress and sponsored by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Dr. Williams has published extensively on multicultural marketing and serves on a number of journal editorial boards. He is co-editor of Diversity in Advertising: Broadening the Scope of Research Directions, and co-author of a forthcoming book on consumer racial profiling.
He received his Ph.D. in Business Administration (Marketing), with a minor in Social Psychology in 1986, from the University of Colorado. He also has an M.S. degree from Union College in Industrial Administration (1975) and a B.A. degree from the University of Pennsylvania in English (1969).
About Rutgers Business School – business.rutgers.edu
Rutgers Business School-Newark and New Brunswick is an integral part of one of the nation's oldest, largest, and most distinguished institutions of higher learning: Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey – founded in 1766. Rutgers Business School has been accredited since 1941 by AACSB International–the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business—a distinction that represents the hallmark of excellence in management education. Today, Rutgers Business School is educating more than 5,000 undergraduate and graduate students at two main campuses in New Jersey as well as six satellite locations in New Jersey, China, and Singapore. Steeped in academic excellence, with a distinguished faculty and a corps of over 33,000 successful alumni, Rutgers Business School is highly ranked by the Financial Times, Bloomberg Business Week, and The Wall Street Journal. According to U.S. News & World Report, the MBA program is the #1 public MBA program in the Northeast, and is ranked #31 nationwide for the employment rate of its graduates three months after graduation. Traditional Full-Time MBA and Flex MBA programs provide excellent options for people looking to gain the relevant skills needed to compete in today's job market.
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