The George Washington University

School of Business: GWSB News

February 13, 2009

GW School of Business Maintains Prestigious International Accreditation

The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) has reaffirmed the business and accounting accreditation of The George Washington University School of Business. To maintain accreditation, a business program must undergo a rigorous internal review every five years. AACSB International found that GWSB has continued its commitment to 21 quality standards covering faculty qualification, strategic management of resources, and interactions between faculty and students. AACSB also found that the School of Business remains committed to continuous improvement of its degree programs. The accounting accreditation required that the School satisfy an additional set of 15 standards specific to the accounting profession.

“Maintaining our accreditation is another example of how the GW School of Business is establishing itself as a preeminent institution,” said Dean Susan Phillips. “We are thrilled that the AACSB committee noted our innovative curricula and teaching excellence in their review.”

The AACSB commended the School of Business for its new cutting-edge Global MBA program, which synthesizes important themes, including globalization, ethics, experiential learning, and sustainability. The school’s study abroad program and career center were highlighted in the AACSB report, and its leadership was praised as “able, entrepreneurial, and resourceful.”

AACSB International is an association of more than 1,100 educational institutions, businesses, and other organizations dedicated to the advancement of management education worldwide. It operates in 70 countries.

Professor Briefs Congress on U.S. Financial Crisis

At a closed-door breakfast meeting, GWSB Professor of International Business Scheherazade Rehman told members of Congress that there are no silver-bullet solutions to the economic crisis.

“Americans are badly shaken from a terrible 2008 and stumbling into a scary 2009,” she said at this year’s kick-off briefing in the Aspen Institute Congressional Program Breakfast Series. “The economic and financial numbers are rapidly being revised daily, always in the gloomier direction, and there is no economic model in sight for any reliable predictions for 2009.”

More than two dozen Congress members gathered at the Jan. 28 meeting to discuss the Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP), the fiscal stimulus bill, and global banking regulatory issues. No lobbyists, congressional staff, or outside observers were allowed to attend.

The Aspen Institute Congressional Program was established in 1983 by former U.S. Sen. Dick Clark as a nongovernmental, nonpartisan, educational program for members of Congress. It annually sponsors 20 closed-door briefings featuring distinguished scholars and international experts.

GWSB Hosts Panel on Transnational Criminal Organizations

By Rachel Kottler

Max Manwaring takes audience questions during CLAI's panel discussion.

The influence of powerful drug cartels and the far-flung effects of organized gangs dominated a recent panel discussion on “Transnational Criminal Organizations in the Americas.” The gathering, which drew a standing-room crowd of 150, was hosted by the GWSB Center for Latin American Issues (CLAI).

Panelists included Luis Bitencourt, professor of national security affairs at the Center for Hemispheric Defense Studies; Phil Williams, University of Pittsburgh professor of international security; Manuel Suárez-Mier, the legal attaché from the Embassy of Mexico; Max Manwaring, professor of military strategy in the Strategic Studies Institute of the U.S. Army War College; and CLAI Director James Ferrer.

Suárez-Mier rebutted arguments that the escalating violence in Mexico signals the failure of the state. He said the violence was a backlash to the government’s efforts to crack down and indicates that the drug kingpins are on the defensive.

During a question-and-answer session, Norman Bailey, a consulting economist from the Institute of World Politics, sparked a lively discussion when he asked panelists whether drug legalization would defuse some of the problem. Bitencourt opposed the idea. But Suárez-Mier said: “Legalization is a valid and serious issue that should be raised. By shutting down solutions, you reduce the ways to deal with an issue.”

The event was part of an ongoing discussion series hosted by CLAI in collaboration with the U.S. Army War College. CLAI is a premier center for the pursuit of scholarship and academic excellence on issues pertaining to Latin America and the Caribbean.

SMPP Professor Kicks off Speaker Series

“It’s just good business,” a new series featuring GWSB faculty and alumni, kicked off with a presentation on the importance of corporate social responsibility in a global economy.

Jennifer Griffin, an associate professor of strategic management and public policy, was the inaugural speaker at the Feb. 4 event in Philadelphia.

The series was inspired by an alumni program that GWSB co-sponsored with the GW Law School. The series is designed to give faculty and alumni experts a platform to speak about corporate social responsibility, both generally and in the context of specific businesses or industries.

Faculty will also have the opportunity to spotlight GW’s new global MBA program, which puts an emphasis on social responsibility and ethics.

The second event in the “It’s Just Good Business” series is slated for March 9. Strategic Management and Public Policy Professor Mark Starik will address the topic “Now is the time to go Green!” He will also provide an update on sustainability at GW and how the global MBA program is educating future business leaders on the issue.

For details and to register, visit GW Alumni.

Alums Participate in Mentoring Program

Mary Miller, MBA, ’78 (center), talks with MBA students Danielle Bash and Tom Loper. Miller is a member of the School of Business Board of Advisors.

The MBA Mentor Program is well underway. More than 50 MBA students and alumni connected recently at a reception, the second such event organized through the mentoring program.

Highlights at the Feb. 3 gathering included an hourlong networking opportunity and a presentation by Gil Yancey, executive director of the F. David Fowler Career Center at the School of Business. He spoke on “Keeping your Network Warm.” To learn how to participate in the MBA Mentor program, send an e-mail to:

In fall of 2008, the GWSB Board of Advisors committed to the launch of a mentoring program for all students entering the Global MBA Program.

MBA Students Travel to the Middle East

Two marketing courses in a faculty-led study abroad program led to a Middle Eastern trip for several MBA candidates. GWSB professors Salah Hassan and Robert Dyer of the Department of Marketing took their students to the United Arab Emirates for case studies, seminars, panels, applied projects, site visits, and presentations by business and government leaders.

The trip focused on Dubai, which is considered a trend-setting test market for the Middle East, but the students also visited the emirates of Abu Dhabi and Sharjah.

As part of their demanding coursework, the students served on consulting teams to assist firms active or interested in entering the Middle Eastern market. Components of the “Advanced Marketing Strategy” and “Market Behavior of the Middle East” classes included intensive pre-travel coursework at GW, the Dubai study tour from Jan. 1-11, and a post-travel program at the end of January.

GWSB Offers Sixth Annual Sports Career Conference


Students, recent graduates, and career changers from across the country will have the opportunity to meet and mingle with more than 75 sports industry executives at the Sports Industry Networking and Career Conference (SINC), March 6-7, 2009. The event is hosted by The George Washington University School of Business’ Sports Marketing Association in partnership with D.C.-based public relations and marketing firm Swanson Communications.


Friday, March 6: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Saturday, March 7: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.


The George Washington University
Media and Public Affairs Building
805 21st Street, NW
Washington, DC 20052
Foggy Bottom-GWU Metro (Orange and Blue lines)


Keynote Speakers:
Tom Wade, chief marketing officer, PGA TOUR
David Haggerty, president, Head USA; vice president, USTA Board of Directors

Other Speakers Include:

  • Jeff Feinstein, marketing director, SFX Baseball Group
  • Derrick Heggans, general manager, AOL Sports
  • Eric Herd, head of sales and business development,
  • David Leibowitz, director of financial analysis and planning, SMG
  • Tim McGhee, director national sponsorships, AT&T
  • Ray Naimoli, senior account executive, Baltimore Ravens
  • Michael Orenstein, franchise development, ESPN X Games
  • Earl Patton, sports marketing manager, Sony
  • Barbra Silva, director of community relations, Washington Nationals
  • Bob Sweeney, president, Greater Washington Sports Alliance


Register at, e-mail, or phone 202-783-5500. Special rates are available for GW students and alumni.

Getting to Know: Amy Townsend

Title: GWSB adjunct professor of strategic management and public policy (SMPP); executive coordinator for SMPP and the GWSB Institute for Corporate Responsibility (ICR).

Job Duties: Develop and teach a course on sustainable business and environmental science. Assist with the coordination of the Institute for Sustainable Research, Education, and Policy; a new sustainable MBA program; and conferences. Also: lecture and maintain the SMPP and ICR Web sites.

Years at GW: Four months.

Best part of working for the GWSB: The multitude of opportunities to meet faculty, staff, and students – and working on projects related to sustainability.

Favorite place on campus: The new green roof on campus.

What co-workers don’t know about me: I’ve been actively involved in green building and green business fields for more than 15 years. Many years ago, I worked as an archaeologist and a firefighter for the U.S. Forest Service.

Family: My family comprises my parents, my better half, and many pets.

Favorite things to do on the weekends: I love to write books, garden, and hike.

Favorite Vacation Spot: Jackson, Wyo.

Favorite Books: Timescapes of Modernity: The Environment and Visible Hazards by Barbara Adam and the Harry Potter series.


Miguel Lejeune, assistant professor of decision sciences, presented, “Combinatorial Patterns for Probabilistically Constrained Optimization Problems” at a workshop at Rutgers University. (1/09)

Getting Ink

Susan Aaronson, adjunct professor of strategic management and public policy, was quoted in the CQ: Vantage Point article, “Oil Regimes Look Better Until the Chips Are Down.” The story was about Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative, which seeks to apply standards for transparency and accounting to oil, gas, and mining operations. The article said: “Susan Aaronson, a George Washington University international affairs professor, suggests that the countries that have signed up — about half of all developing nations that export resources — are trying to signal foreign investors and donors that they are interested in good government, and in the process are allowing citizens a greater role. Some, such as the relatively repressive Caspian Sea country of Azerbaijan, have been active, while others have done relatively little.” (1/19)

Aaronson was also quoted in the Financial Times article, “Free-traders quiet on Buy American.” The article focused on a provision in the economic stimulus bill. “Susan Aaronson, an expert on trade from George Washington University, notes that nongovernmental organisations that are prepared to criticise US agricultural protectionism when it hurts developing countries are nowhere to be seen in the Buy American debate.” (2/5)

Kathy Korman Frey, adjunct professor of management and associate director of GWSB’s Center for Entrepreneurial Excellence (CFEE), discussed her “Hot Mommas Project” on “Washington Business Tonight” on NewsChannel 8 (2/10/09) She was also interviewed by WJLA-TV for a “Working Woman” segment.


James Bailey, Ave Tucker Professorial Fellow of Leadership and professor of management, was recognized by the American Library Association (ALA). ALA named his book, International Encyclopedia of Organization Studies, Volumes 1-4 (co-edited with Stewart Clegg), one of the “Outstanding Academic Titles for 2008.” ALA considered over 7,000 new books for the honor.

Class Notes

Michael Ditkoff, MBA, ’81, a senior budget analyst with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, was given the “Chief Financial Officer Management Award" for exemplary performance. The award came from the Department of Homeland Security. Ditkoff developed and launched a successful national training program to correct processing and reporting problems in personnel payroll and budget data.

Alyson (Rappaport) Fieldman, BBA, ’99, and MBA, ’01, and Matthew Fieldman, MBA, ’05, welcomed a daughter, Eliana Fox Fieldman, on Dec. 19, 2008, in Cleveland. Alyson is a senior project manager for Hubbard One, where she helps law-firm clients create custom Web sites and software applications. Matthew is a senior campaign associate at the Jewish Community Federation of Cleveland.

John Fletcher, BBA ’68, founder and CEO of Fletcher Spaght, announced that his firm reached two milestones in December 2008. The technology and healthcare consulting firm celebrated its 25th anniversary at the same time it completed fundraising for Fletcher Spaght Ventures II, a $100 million venture capital fund.

Petra Horna, BBA, ’08, was named director of business development for EwingCole’s Washington, D.C. office. EwingCole is an award-winning architecture and engineering firm.

Tom Jennings, MHA, ’75, was named president/CEO of NXT at Spartanburg Hospital system. NXT is the innovations arm for the hospital system.

Nestor Ray Sague, MBA, ‘82 was promoted to senior vice president of portfolio management and principal at Davidson Trust Company.

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