The Saginaw Valley State University College of Business and Management honored regional businesses, students, faculty, and alumni during the first annual Academia Awards Best In Business ceremony Friday, March 21.
Nexteer Automotive received the Outstanding Business award. The automotive parts manufacturer headquartered in Saginaw is a multibillion dollar steering and drive line production business, employs 10,000 people and serves more than 50 customers globally including General Motors, Ford, Fiat and Toyota.
The Outstanding Family Business award was given to Stevens Worldwide Van Lines. The Saginaw-based moving and storage company earned the award in part because of its development and implementation of family policies for the business, as well as its development of the next generation of family members for the business.
Herbert Spence III received the Outstanding Business Leader award. The president and chief executive officer of Spence Bros., a family-owned construction firm, also is a member of a number of community boards including the Great Lakes Bay Regional Alliance, United Way of Saginaw County, and the Boys and Girls Club of The Great Lakes Bay Region.
Pamela Forbus received the Outstanding College of Business and Management Alumna award. A native of Macomb County’s Harrison Township, the vice president of strategic insights for Frito Lay earned a bachelor’s degree from SVSU in 1987. At Frito Lay, Forbus leads a team of 30 strategy, analytics and market insight professionals at the company with six brands and over $1 billion in sales.
The Outstanding Undergraduate Student award was presented to Stephanie Smith. The Harbor Springs native, who graduated from SVSU with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in December, was a recipient of the university's President's Scholarship and a member of the Honors Program. She has traveled to Cambodia, Haiti, Mozambique and Nepal for service activities and research.
Brian Funk received the Outstanding Graduate Student award. A Midland native, he completed his Master of Business Administration degree in December. Funk is currently the controller at Johnson Carbide Products, a Saginaw manufacturer of drills and other specialized cutting instruments.
The Excellence in Teaching: Faculty award was given to Mark McCartney. The SVSU professor of accounting was recognized because of his passion for teaching and student learning. "I am proud to say that I work to the best of my ability to help students prepare for their careers," he said.
John Abbott received the Excellence in Teaching: Adjunct Faculty award. The retired major manager from The Dow Chemical Co. began teaching SVSU marketing and management courses in 1994. "My passion is opening the student's mind and heart to the realities of life in the business world and showing them how to succeed in that environment," he said.
The Excellence in Research award was given to Kaustav Misra. The SVSU assistant professor in economics has written scholarly articles published by a number of journals since joining SVSU in January 2011. One of Misra's articles, "The propensity to use incentive compensation for non-family managers in SME family firms," was selected as the Journal of Family Business Management's Outstanding Paper of 2013 by the publication's editorial board.
SVSU’s undergraduate and graduate business programs are accredited by AACSB International, the leading accrediting agency for business colleges. SVSU first received accreditation from AACSB in 2002 and recently was granted an extension through 2018. Less than 5 percent of the 13,000 collegiate business programs worldwide are so accredited.