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From left: Senior Associate Dean: Faculty and Research Kathleen Hagerty, Dean Dipak C. Jain, and Senior Associate Dean: Curriculum and Teaching Sunil Chopra.

Professor Sunil Chopra named new senior associate dean for curriculum and teaching

Operations expert assumes role held by Robert Korajczyk, who resumes full-time position in Finance Department

By Matt Golosinski

6/3/2006 - Professor Sunil Chopra, the IBM Distinguished Professor of Operations Management and Information Systems will assume the role of senior associate dean, curriculum and teaching, announced Dean Dipak C. Jain.

This position has been held since 2003 by Robert Korajczyk, the Harry G. Guthmann Distinguished Professor of Finance. Professor Korajczyk returns to full-time teaching and research as a member of the Finance Department, while Chopra joins Dean Jain and Professor Kathleen Hagerty, senior associate dean, faculty and research, to lead the school.

Dean Jain made the announcement June 3 during "Oh Be Joyful" the annual Kellogg School ceremony that recognizes faculty and staff accomplishments from throughout the past school year.

"The senior associate deans play a critical part in managing the school," said Dean Jain, who in 2001 created these positions to ensure that everyday operations at Kellogg remained optimal even when he was traveling to meet with alumni, recruiters and friends of the school.

Chopra, a supply chain expert who joined Kellogg in 1989 after earning his doctorate in operations research from SUNY at Stony Brook in 1986 and serving as assistant professor at the Leonard N. Stern School of Business Administration, has garnered numerous awards for his teaching and research. He expects to draw upon this wealth of experience in his new role.

"I hope to build upon the Kellogg tradition of collaboration and continuous innovation to ensure our teaching and curriculum remain at the cutting edge," said Chopra. "Our goal is to train students who always ask and are able to answer the question: 'How can I improve the current situation?'"

Chopra, a dynamic professor noted for his ability to make complex and technical material engaging, takes over a rotating position in the dean's office, one designed to bring in new faculty experts every couple years. Hagerty, the First Chicago Distinguished Professor of Finance, assumed her current administrative role last June.

"The leadership of our senior associate deans provides real guidance and meaningful innovation for Kellogg," said Dean Jain. "These colleagues also help build the school's international brand by their service, since their efforts in Evanston allow me to cultivate opportunities and relationships that are essential to maintaining the Kellogg School's strength worldwide."

The dean also praised the efforts of Professor Korajczyk, the outgoing senior associate dean, noting a variety of important initiatives undertaken during Korajczyk's tenure, including curriculum enhancements and the Leadership Task Force, both of which have bolstered the school's academics.

"Not only has Bob played a key part in continuing innovation at Kellogg," said Dean Jain, "but his friendship, as well as his dedication and service, have touched every part of the school. It has been a privilege to work alongside such a fine scholar and person; I am personally grateful for his unflagging efforts."

Korajczyk reflected upon his tenure, recalling several initiatives designed to keep Kellogg in the top echelon of management leaders.

"My colleagues and I have implemented the curriculum changes developed by my predecessor, Professor David Besanko and the Curriculum Task Force," said Korajczyk. "We've built the Pre-Term core class in the Full-Time Program and also implemented a required course for second-year students, Values, Ethics and Strategic Crisis Management."

Korajczyk also noted the importance of the Leadership Task Force, a committee he chaired for the past two years. "One traditional strength of Kellogg has been its ability to teach leadership to students by offering them action-oriented opportunities in which to test and refine their skills. This 'Leadership in Action' model is one the task force honed by leveraging existing strengths at Kellogg and adding new ways for students to excel as leaders."

The task force also sparked initiatives, such as an Executive Leaders in Residence Series and an experiential leadership course.

Though he said "it has been a great pleasure and honor to work with Kellogg faculty, staff and students," including collaborating with department chairs to increase course offerings, Korajczyk admitted he is ready to return to teaching some of those courses - and creating a new one.

"I've been developing the Asset Management Practicum in recent months," he said. "Over the past few years we've introduced 20 courses, and the practicum will join their ranks next year."

Said Dean Jain: "We thank Professor Korajczyk for his continuous efforts to keep Kellogg among the top-ranked management schools. We know these efforts will continue unabated with Professor Chopra's logistics expertise making important contributions to the Kellogg administration, just as Dean Hagerty's leadership and scholarship already have done."