The University of Tennessee Knoxville’s Haslam College of Business will celebrate the newly named Boyd Center for Business and Economic Research in planned festivities on Friday, April 15.
“We’re very pleased to be able to celebrate Randy and Jenny’s commitment to the Boyd Center and to the Haslam College of Business,” said Stephen L. Mangum, dean and Stokely Foundation Leadership Chair. “Their investment supports the important research being carried out at the Boyd Center–research that is critical to our state and our nation. We are indeed grateful.”
A UT alumnus, Randy Boyd graduated in 1979 with a degree in industrial management. In 1991, he founded Radio Systems Corporation, which produces more than 4,600 pet products under brand names such as PetSafe, Invisible Fence and SportDOG. He serves on the Haslam Dean’s Advisory Council and as the college’s chair for the Investing in the Journey to the Top 25 campaign, a university-wide effort.
The Boyd Center for Business and Economic Research focuses on national and state economic trends for government and public and private organizations. The center conducts research on economic analysis and policy considerations on taxation, health care, education, workforce needs, capital investments and welfare.
Housed within the Haslam College of Business, the center was established in 1937 as the Bureau of Business and Economic Research and became the Center for Business and Economic Research in 1967.
“Randy and Jenny Boyd’s generous financial commitment to the center supports funding for faculty research initiatives, technology and database and subscription fees, as well as efforts to maintain the center’s national reputation for excellence and ingenuity,” said William F. Fox, Ergen Professor of Business and Boyd Center director.
The Boyds have continually invested in improving lives through education.
In 2013, he took a yearlong leave of absence from his company to serve Gov. Bill Haslam in a volunteer role as his special advisor on higher education. Boyd played a key role in the development of the Drive to 55 initiative and Tennessee Promise before becoming Tennessee’s commissioner of economic and community development.
The Randy and Jenny Boyd tnAchieves Scholarship benefits students who successfully complete their associate’s degree through the Tennessee Promise program.
The Full-Service Collaborative Project/University-Assisted Community School Program Enrichment Fund—operated through UT’s College of Education, Health, and Human Sciences—provides funding for an after-school program that offers mental health and health care services, community training and outreach, supplies, equipment, and meals to students at Pond Gap Elementary School in Knox County.
The couple also funds the Boyd Venture Fund for Student Entrepreneurs, and the Pet Safe Endowed Chair in Small Animal Clinical Behavior Research in UT’s College of Veterinary Medicine. They are leading donors to UT Athletics, in particular for the development of world-class facilities for the track and field programs, among other areas of the university.