Monday, March 4, 2013

The next John S. Shannon Professor of Economics, Roanoke College

I am so honored to have been named the next John S. Shannon Professor of Economics at Roanoke College. Dean Richard Smith and President Michael Maxey made the announcement a little over a week ago and I am still pinching myself to make sure that it is real. The announcement was as follows:
Dear members of the Roanoke campus community:
President Maxey and I are very pleased to announce that Dr. Alice Kassens has been selected as the John S. Shannon Professor of Economics. She will begin her five year appointment in August 2013. Dr. Kassens succeeds Dr. Garry Fleming who has held the professorship with distinction for the past five years.
The Shannon Professorship seeks to enhance faculty development in economics while also building interest and achievement in the field. It honors and supports a faculty member who is an outstanding teacher and accomplished scholar who is also thoroughly committed to enriching the lives of Roanoke students. Dr. Kassens was selected by President Maxey and me after careful and deliberative process that involved a faculty review committee. 
I hope that you will join President Maxey and me in congratulating Dr. Kassens. Roanoke College is fortunate to have her on its faculty. 
I was overwhelmed with the kind words from friends, faculty, staff, and alumni after the announcement.

The College released the following regarding Mr. Shannon and the Professorship:
John S. Shannon Professorship in Economics
"I have long felt that it's important to have some understanding of how markets work and their role in a free society," asserts Jack S. Shannon '52. To help promote that objective, he has funded the John S. Shannon Endowed Professorship in Economics.
After graduating from Roanoke with a B.S. in economics, Shannon received his law degree from the University of Virginia in 1955. He spent most of his career as a corporate lawyer in the railroad industry, serving as chief legal officer of Norfolk and Western Railway and its successor, Norfolk Southern Corporation, retiring in 1996. During the railway deregulation years, he was able to observe how market forces bring about the efficient allocation of assets and efforts, with resulting social benefits.
As a member of the College's Board of Trustees from 1974 to 2005, Shannon witnessed growth in enrollment, student body diversity, more credentialed faculty and academic recognition with the arrival of Phi Beta Kappa. His intent for the Shannon Professorship, he explains, is that it will "enhance faculty development in the area of economics and stimulate student interest and achievement in the field."
I have put many hours into promoting the Roanoke College Economics Program, a program that I cherish. Our students are second to none, and I am honored to help guide them through their undergraduate education. The professorship will permit much needed time for expanding my research agenda while maintaining my teaching and promotional efforts.

I look forward to meeting Mr. Shannon so that I can personally express my gratitude and I will work tirelessly to make the most of this wonderful opportunity.

Thank you,

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