Alumni & Giving

HASLAM GALA

Mark your calendars. The 2017 Gala will be held Friday, November 3, 2017.

The eighth annual Alumni Awards Gala drew a crowd to downtown Knoxville on Friday, November 11. The annual gala benefits the College Fund for the Haslam College of Business. The evening kicked off with cocktails and a silent auction in the Knoxville Convention Center and was followed by dinner and the presentation of awards.

Fifty student hosts were on hand for the black tie optional event, which was sponsored by Bandit Lights, DHG, PetSafe, Pilot Flying J, Pinnacle, PYA and Regal Entertainment Group. During the awards portion of the festivities, the college named its 2016 Distinguished Alum, the Entrepreneur of the Year,  Outstanding Corporate Partner and its Outstanding Young Alum.

Table sponsors were 21st Mortgage Corporation, BB&T, Bush Brothers & Co., Gary & Marsha Clayton, docQmed, EY, First Tennessee Bank, G.A. Richards Group, J.A. Fielden Co., Larsen & Adrian Jay, Martin & Company, Pugh CPAs, Steiner & Ellis, SunTrust Bank, Terminus Real Estate, The Trust Company, US Bank, and Willis Towers Watson.

2016 Gala Photo Gallery


Alumni Awards

Distinguished Alum Award

Distinguished Alum Award recipients are extraordinary professionals who personify leadership. Through their vision, intellect, passion for excellence, and boldness of spirit, these individuals have touched countless lives.

Our distinguished alumni share two common characteristics of which we are both proud and grateful: each is an alum of the Haslam College of Business, and each has generously invested in the college in a multitude of ways.


Entrepreneur of the Year

As the largest influence on American job growth, entrepreneurship is a vital part of business education. The Haslam College recognizes the importance of entrepreneurship in the global economy and is committed to providing its students the foundation necessary for future entrepreneurial growth. In recognition of the entrepreneurial spirit embraced by the college, the Entrepreneur of the Year award spotlights an alum who shares this same passion.


Outstanding Corporate Partner Award

Haslam College corporate partners invest in the college by giving of time, talent, and financial philanthropic support. Hiring students as interns, recruiting recent graduates as employees, mentoring students in the classroom, and providing resources through financial gifts are just a few examples of the ways these organizations invest in business education. The Outstanding Corporate Partner Award recognizes organizations that have demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to the success of the college’s students, faculty, and programs.


Outstanding Young Alum Award

The Haslam College has successful alumni of all ages, many of whom acheived professional excellence early in their careers. The Outstanding Young Alum Award recognizes alumni aged 40 or younger who have demonstrated records of achievement, leadership, and promising futures in business disciplines.


2016 Distinguished Alum – Michael Masters

After earning a degree in finance at the Haslam College of Business, Mike Masters (HCB, ’89) started his career in Atlanta as a retail salesman at J.C. Bradford. He later worked for Oppenheimer, a New York City based stock brokerage, before starting his own hedge fund firm, Masters Capital Management.

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2016 Distinguished Alum – Michael Masters

After earning a degree in finance at the Haslam College of Business, Mike Masters (HCB, ’89) started his career in Atlanta as a retail salesman at J.C. Bradford. He later worked for Oppenheimer, a New York City based stock brokerage, before starting his own hedge fund firm, Masters Capital Management.

Based in Atlanta, Masters Capital Management provides advisory and management services to pooled investment vehicles. “Our priority is to perform as well for our investors as we can,” Masters says. “Some of my early work when I was in the process of starting the firm came directly from what I learned at the Haslam College of Business about modern portfolio theory and other new ideas in finance at the time.”

Preceding the financial crisis in 2008, Masters testified before the U.S. Congress and various federal committees about questionable activities in the derivatives markets. His testimony grew into an idea for a non-profit. “I felt society needed a financial reform organization that advocated for the broad public’s interest instead of only in financial intermediaries’ interests,” Masters says. “At that time, there wasn’t a non-profit focused on the average citizen in financial markets. My goal was to start an organization that could effectively fill that watchdog role.”

Masters created Better Markets, a non-profit, non-partisan, independent organization that advocates for financial reform. Representatives from the organization meet regularly with officials in various government agencies, including the Federal Reserve Bank, the SEC, the CFTC, and the U.S. Department of the Treasury. “Better Markets promotes a point of view that contributes to fairness in markets,” Masters says. “They’re looking for transparency in financial markets and to create a level playing field for all participants in markets, not just the largest players.”

Crediting his education at Haslam, Masters says creative thinking has helped him achieve success. “In markets, success comes from your ability to have an edge,” he says. “Those advantages often come from thinking critically and differently from other investors. I believe that critical thinking is partly a product of one’s education, and my time attending UT certainly helped me to develop this skill.”

For his career success, continued engagement and support of the college, and efforts to support the financial interests of all Americans, the Haslam College of Business is proud to present Mike Masters with the 2016 Distinguished Alum Award.
 

Previous Recipients


2016 Entrepreneur of the Year – David Stevens

After earning his bachelor of science in accounting from the Haslam College of Business in 1975, David Stevens went on to earn an MBA at Memphis State University in 1977. Meanwhile, he began a career in healthcare services at a for-profit hospital, where he served as comptroller as the hospital dealt with bankruptcy. He later worked for a large medical group in Memphis that also faced financial problems. Both times, Stevens helped turn things around.

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2016 Entrepreneur of the Year – David Stevens

After earning his bachelor of science in accounting from the Haslam College of Business in 1975, David Stevens went on to earn an MBA at Memphis State University in 1977. Meanwhile, he began a career in healthcare services at a for-profit hospital, where he served as comptroller as the hospital dealt with bankruptcy. He later worked for a large medical group in Memphis that also faced financial problems. Both times, Stevens helped turn things around.

“I had the opportunity to take on significant responsibilities early in my career and got a lot of exposure to healthcare accounting and finance,” he says. “I was extremely lucky that the two opportunities worked out well for the companies, for myself and for the owners.”

In 1996, after 18 years serving in a dual role at Bonheur Children’s Medical Center and as the CEO for its related for-profit division, Stevens and his management team executed a buyout with a New York-based private equity firm for one of the for-profit’s entities, Accredo Health. He became CEO of Accredo, a leading national provider of specialty pharmacy services to the biopharmaceutical manufacturing industry.

“Our pharmacists and nurses help manage care for chronic patients who had life-threatening diseases,” Stevens says. “We were often able to get them back to work and help them live a high quality life.” Accredo grew quickly from 50 employees to more than 2,000 in nine years. Accredo’s revenue jumped from $150 million at the time of its public offering in 1999 to over $2 billion by the time it sold.

Medco Health Solutions, Inc., acquired Accredo Health in 2005. Since then, Stevens has remained involved as an investor in private equity within the healthcare services industry. He continues to enjoy the healthcare industry as an entrepreneur. “It’s a fast-moving, fascinating business in that you have the opportunity to serve and help patients,” he says. “It’s a balance of running an ethical company that also can financially grow and continue to provide and improve its services for its customer base.”

Stevens has remained involved with Haslam through his service on the Dean’s Advisory Council and, more recently, by funding an accelerator program through the Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation. For his career success and dedication to giving back, the Haslam College of Business is proud to name David Stevens the 2016 Entrepreneur of the Year.

Previous Recipients


2016 Outstanding Corporate Sponsor – Dixon Hughes Goodman

Dixon Hughes Goodman (DHG) has carried on a tradition of giving back to the Haslam College of Business for three decades. Based in Charlotte, North Carolina, the firm’s name evolved over the years but its commitment to the university has held steady.

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2016 Outstanding Corporate Sponsor – Dixon Hughes Goodman

Dixon Hughes Goodman (DHG) has carried on a tradition of giving back to the Haslam College of Business for three decades. Based in Charlotte, North Carolina, the firm’s name evolved over the years but its commitment to the university has held steady.

“We’ve been actively recruiting at UT for about thirty years, and we’ve hired well over a hundred Haslam grads,” says David Evans, regional managing partner for the South region. “We’ve had several people serve on the Accounting Advisory Roundtable, and one of our founding partners, Larry Evans, served on the Dean’s Advisory Council before he started winding down his career.”

DHG also supports a number of initiatives at the college, including the Accounting and Information Management Academy and the University of Tennessee, Knoxville’s chapter of the National Association of Black Accountants.

“There’s a need for more diversity in accounting, so Haslam has concentrated on diversifying at UT, and we’re working on that at our firm as well,” Evans says. “We’ve joined forces on that goal.” Representatives from DHG have spoken during classes and other events on campus, including Beta Alpha Psi meetings.

Scholarships are another arm of DHG’s ongoing support. “We have a sizeable endowment called DHG Accounting Excellence endowment, which helps to fund faculty awards, undergraduate scholarships, graduate fellowships, visiting scholars and more,” Evans says. Additionally, the Haslam College of Business named its Master of Accountancy Classroom in honor of the firm.

Evans emphasizes the compatibility of DHG’s values with the college’s goals. “I think we both place a high value on excellence,” he says. “We’re clearly both committed to diversity and to raising the bar. The university is trying to become a Top 25 institution, and DHG has become a top 25 accounting firm in the United States.”

DHG also appreciates the college’s collaborative, helpful approach to teaching students. “One thing that sets Haslam apart is the quality of the faculty and how engaged they are in the success of the students,” Evans says. “It’s more than just teaching, but helping the students to be successful. Our firm shares a similar desire in making the people we’re investing in successful.”

For its continuing commitment to serving the university and the college, the Haslam College of Business is proud to honor DHG as our 2016 Outstanding Corporate Partner.

Previous Recipients


2016 Outstanding Young Alum – Laurie Shimp

Laurie Shimp came to the Haslam College of Business in 1998 after earning an undergraduate degree in accounting from Florida State University. She completed her Master’s of Accountancy in 1999 with a concentration in taxes and immediately joined EY full-time in their audit practice in Tampa, Florida.

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2016 Outstanding Young Alum – Laurie Shimp

Laurie Shimp came to the Haslam College of Business in 1998 after earning an undergraduate degree in accounting from Florida State University. She completed her Master’s of Accountancy in 1999 with a concentration in taxes and immediately joined EY full-time in their audit practice in Tampa, Florida.

One of Shimp’s professors at Haslam, Dan Murphy, urged her to pursue taxes rather than settling into auditing. She approached EY about the possibility and was transferred to their tax department.

In 2000, Shimp transferred from EY’s audit practice to its tax practice. She began her career in federal taxes and later completed rotations in EY’s state and local tax and quantitative services specialty practices. Shimp enjoyed working on large corporate taxpayers and in 2007, EY requested that she relocate to Atlanta to serve one of the firm’s largest global clients, the Coca-Cola Company.

In Atlanta, Shimp worked as EY’s senior manager for Coca-Cola for the next four years. “That was a great experience,” she says. “I traveled extensively around the world.”

After twelve years with the firm, Shimp became a partner at EY in 2012, transitioning onto several large multinational companies as EY’s tax account leader where she was responsible for delivering exceptional client service across all areas of tax.

Today, Shimp is the deputy market leader for tax at EY’s Atlanta office and she continues to serve as a tax account leader. She also serves as one of fourteen members on EY’s southeast regional partner forum and is a graduate of the Kellogg School of Management Executive Leadership Program at Northwestern University.

Shimp’s continued involvement with the Haslam College of Business includes serving on the Accounting and Information Management Roundtable since 2006, giving financially to the university, and spreading her love for the MAcc program.

“My professors in the program at Haslam invested in me and believed in me,” she says. “They gave me the confidence to be successful and pursue this career, and they encouraged a balanced view of work and family life.”

For her career excellence, the Haslam College of Business is proud to name Laurie Shimp the Outstanding Young Alum for 2016.

Previous Recipients