The UO Lundquist College of Business welcomes Scott Kerslake as its inaugural professor of practice for the Marilyn C. and Gerry B. Cameron Center for Finance and Securities Analysis.
Kerslake brings both boardroom and on-the-ground finance experience via his role as CEO of prAna Living, and past roles as president of destination resort and retreat Miraval Arizona, and founder and CEO of performance apparel and gear maker Athleta.
The non-tenured professor of practice position is held by a limited number of eminently qualified business, academic, or government thought leaders who have made major impacts on fields and disciplines important to University of Oregon programs. Each professor of practice will spend a significant amount of time working with students and faculty to apply academic learning in a practical context.
The UO underwent the demanding process, led by former Lundquist College Dean Kees de Kluyver and culminating in 2012, of formalizing this new professorship position at the state level.
“The Cameron Center for Finance and Securities Analysis is extremely excited to welcome Scott Kerslake to the Lundquist College in his new role as the James F. and Shirley J. Rippey Professor of Practice," said Michele Henney, program manager for the center. “Scott's extensive background and experience in finance, entrepreneurship, sports product, and sustainability make him a perfect fit with all of our centers of excellence."
More than just a visiting instructor, the professor of practice has a hand in developing curriculum and programs, as well as being a frontline liaison to government and industry. A professor of practice is an integral part of the college, valued for his or her substantial experience and respected as a full academic professor. The university and college's first professor of practice was for the Lundquist Center for Entrepreneurship and was appointed in 2012. Kerslake is the college's second professor of practice.
“The addition of Avamere Professor of Practice Michael Crooke as the university and college's first professor of practice has proven an invaluable one, with many students citing his course as a highlight of their Lundquist College MBA experience," said Bruce Blonigen, interim dean for the Lundquist College and Philip H. Knight Professor of Social Science. “Now, we look to expand that exceptional experience to Cameron Center students with duplicate success."
Initially, Kerslake's role will be to supplement and enhance existing courses and student organization experiences, Henney said. In the future, Kerslake will develop his own curriculum to be delivered at both the graduate and undergraduate levels.
Kerslake said he feels fortunate to have an opportunity to contribute to the collaborative culture at the Lundquist College and to share his professional experiences with students.
“I am thrilled to join the UO and Lundquist College of Business family. The professors, staff, and administrators I have met have all impressed me with their desire to build an incredible learning institution, infused with an enormous amount of entrepreneurial passion," he said. “The aspiration of the university leadership to invite people into the Lundquist world who are operating businesses on a day-to-day basis strikes me as a wonderful complement to the substantial brain power that resides within the business school."
Kerslake holds a BA in political science and business from Boston College. He is a board member at the Spirit Rock Meditation Center, as well as a former board member for the Insight Prison Project, the Outdoor Industry Association, and the Stanford Center on Longevity at Stanford University.
Said Kerslake, “My goal is for our students to leave their Lundquist business school experience with enthusiasm, deeper knowledge, and the spark of how business can be a force for positive change. My professional experiences in purpose-driven organizations will hopefully provide them with one of the ingredients that are part of the critical foundation they are receiving."
The professor of practice position in the Cameron Center for Finance and Securities Analysis was made possible by a generous gift from Shirley Rippey "53 and the late James Rippey "53.