The Lundquist College of Business along with the entire University of Oregon community is mourning the loss of M. Megan Partch, age 58, a longtime and esteemed member of the finance faculty, who died on Wednesday, October 24, after a years long battle with cancer.
"Everyone at the college is deeply saddened by Megan's passing," said Dean James Bean. "Megan enriched our lives with her wisdom and humanity. A world-class scholar, she was always calm, always insightful, and ever a teacher. She had a profound understanding of the world of finance and a passion for her students and scholarship that will be genuinely missed. Our thoughts are with her family."
Born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, Partch completed her undergraduate work at Carleton College and came to the Lundquist College of Business in 1981 after earning M.B.A. and Ph.D. degrees at the University of Wisconsin. She served as head of the Department of Finance from 1997 to 2006, and she later was appointed the John B. Rogers Professor of Banking and Finance.
During her tenure as department head, Partch was largely responsible for advancing the reputation of the college for finance research excellence. She helped pioneer some of the first experiential education opportunities for students, and she was instrumental in attracting and mentoring promising junior finance faculty and Ph.D. students.
Her research in corporate financial policy and corporate governance is among the most cited in the area, and her papers appeared in top-quality journals, including the Journal of Finance and Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis. In 1997, subscribers to the Journal of Financial Economics voted Partch's article "The Decline of Takeovers and Disciplinary Management Turnover" as the Best Paper in the Area of Corporate Finance published in the journal. Partch also served as an editor and/or reviewer for the Journal of Finance, Journal of Financial Economics, Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Financial Management Journal of Business Research, and Journal of Financial Research.
In addition to her contributions to finance research, Partch was honored with numerous teaching awards during her twenty-six years at the college, including the James E. Reinmuth M.B.A. Teaching Excellence Award, Business Advisory Council Undergraduate Teaching Award, and P. W. Pipe Outstanding Second-Year M.B.A. Faculty Award. She was also the U. S. Bank Research Scholar from 1994 to 2006, and she was a visiting faculty member at the Graduate School of Business at the University of Chicago, the College of Business at the University of Notre Dame, and the Smurfit Graduate School of Business at University College Dublin.
Beyond her substantial professional accomplishments, Megan was known for her grace, her passion for fine food, and for her strong devotion to her many friends. "Megan and I have been friends and colleagues at Oregon since 1981," said the college's Lindholm Professor of Finance Larry Dann. "Her personal warmth and intellectual insight are a rare combination. We in the finance department will miss her deeply."
Partch is survived by her husband, Wayne Mikkelson, who is the college's Engemann Professor of Finance, and her two sons Evan, 20, and Lewis, 18. The family has requested that any donations in Partch's memory be made to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival or Peacehealth Hospice. A memorial service will be held on November 10 at 1:00 PM in room 182 of the Lillis Business Complex. A reception in the building's atrium will follow.