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University of Minnesota dean receives Marriott School alumni award

The Marriott School of Management’s William G. Dyer Institute for Leading Organizational Change presented Alison Davis-Blake, dean of the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management, with its 2007 Distinguished Alumni award.

“Knowing what you love, that’s the hard thing,” Davis-Blake told Brigham Young University students, faculty and guests at an award banquet held in her honor. “Look for your life by knowing yourself and knowing what you love. Attach yourself to great mentors and involve the people that you love in your work, because that will help you make a great career.”

The Distinguished Alumni award is presented annually to an alumnus who makes a significant contribution in the field of organizational behavior.

A career academic, Davis–Blake earned a bachelor’s degree in economics in 1979 and a master’s degree in organizational behavior in 1982, both at BYU. Her educational pursuits led her to complete a doctorage in organizational behavior at Stanford University.

After graduation, she focused on human resources management, helping create and run an executive master’s degree program in the same field. Her research, highlighted by articles published in many business magazines, led to an associate deanship at the University of Texas’ McCombs School of Business.

While at Texas, Davis–Blake served as dissertation advisor for Gerry Sanders, chair of the Department of Organizational Leadership and Strategy at the Marriott School. In his introductory remarks at the award banquet held April 6, Sanders said he felt fortunate to have had the opportunity to be mentored by somebody with the wealth of knowledge and wisdom that Davis–Blake possessed.

“She believes in mentorship by example,” he said. “She believes that a good mentor isn’t just somebody who tells you how smart you are, what a good idea is or what a good person you are, but a good mentor helps you stretch.”

The Dyer Institute also recognized two faculty members and seven MBA students at the banquet. Associate professor of organizational behavior Kate Kirkham received the 2007 Mentor of the Year award. Tim Gardner, associate professor of organizational leadership and strategy, received the 2007 Teacher of the Year award.

Additionally, MBA students Scott Creer, from Troy, Mich., received the Culbert Laney Scholarship; Alisha Steere Malcarne, from Provo, Utah, was awarded the Stephan G. and Louise Richards Covey Scholarship; Ryan Giles, from Palo Alto, Calif., received the Gene W. Dalton Scholarship; Nathan Thompson, from Ogden, Utah, was awarded the Paul H. Thompson Scholarship; Howard Haines, from Logan, Utah, received the VitalSmarts Scholarship; Sirish Bob Maddula, from Naraspur, India, received the Bonner Ritchie Scholarship; and Kristin Hawkes, from Salt Lake City, was awarded the Bischoff Scholarship.

Writer: Todd Bluth


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