Noteworthy collegewide news ... take two

By Carol Elliott | Spring 2016


Ann Tenbrunsel has long been publishing research on what causes people to behave unethically. The David E. Gallo Professor of Business Ethics was one of six Notre Dame researchers showcased as part of Women Lead, a University initiative recognizing the achievements of women as part of International Women’s Day in March. Their scholarship is featured on the Women Lead website at

In particular, Tenbrunsel studies why good people make unethical decisions — the gap between how people say they’ll act and how they truly act in the moment of truth. Tenbrunsel calls these gaps “blind spots,” and her book by the same title takes a deep dive into how they arise and what to do about them.

“It’s not that people don’t have values, but they fail to account for the strain on these values in the moment of decision.”

Service Award

Fred Mittelstaedt, Deloitte Foundation Professor of Accountancy, received the Federation of Schools of Accountancy (FSA) 2016 Joseph A. Silvoso Faculty Merit, which recognizes an outstanding faculty member teaching at an FSA member school. Criteria used for selecting the award recipient included curriculum or program development, participation in student activities, service to the school, participation in professional activities related to graduate accounting education, and leadership in academia.

Ethical List

Each year, Ethisphere magazine publishes its list of the “100 Most Influential People in Business Ethics,” recognizing individuals that have made a material impact in the world of business ethics and compliance.

2015 Mendoza honorees include Ann Tenbrunsel, the David E. Gallo Professor of Business Ethics, and Adam Kronk, program director for the Notre Dame Deloitte Center for Ethical Leadership. Others with ties to Mendoza include former dean Carolyn Woo and Mary Gentile, Director of Giving Voice to Values at Babson College and a member of the ND Deloitte Center advisory board.

Also making the list: Warren Buffett, Elon Musk and Pope Francis.

Top Researcher

Luis Gómez-Mejia, the Ray and Milann Siegfried Professor of Management, was named to Thomson Reuters’ “2015 Highly Cited Researchers” list. The list identifies the top 1 percent of the almost 9 million scholars and scientists who publish their academic findings every year, accounting for more than 2 million journal papers.

Gómez-Mejia was cited by Thomson Reuters for his work in economics and business. Publishing more than 200 articles in the most prestigious management journals, he is ranked one of the most highly cited scholars and one of the 12 most published authors in the “big eight” management journals out of approximately 20,000 Academy of Management members. He has also written and edited more than 15 books in various management areas, including his areas of expertise — international management, family business, strategic management and executive compensation.

What the world is thinking

The audience not only packed the Jordan Auditorium, but also filled four classrooms with an overflow crowd. All turned out to see a British journalist give his view of the American presidential race, and what the outcome might mean to the U.S. and the rest of the world.

Gerard Baker was well qualified to deliver this perspective. The editor-in-chief of The Wall Street Journal, Baker has reported on more than six presidential elections and served as a moderator to a Republican primary debate hosted by FOX Business News in November.

During his March 14 talk, “2016 Presidential Election: A Global Perspective,” Baker deftly weaved together historical and current events that have resulted in the election being unlike anything the country’s seen before, with the voting public staunchly turning against the establishment candidates.

Stagnation of middle-class income, high unemployment rates globally, political unrest and terrorism are just a few of the factors that have resulted in widespread uncertainty, said Baker. His predictions included a reassertion of national sovereignty, difficulty in striking trade agreements and the U.K.’s exit from the European Union. He also addressed the prevailing public dissatisfaction with politics in general, resulting in rancor toward established politicians and propelling Donald Trump in the primaries.

“It’s not just that political leaders have promised great things from the global economy and failed to deliver really for most Americans in the last 30 years,” said Baker. “It’s also that there is a sense of political failure at a much broader level, I think. But this is particularly true in this country, a sense that in the last 20 years for example the United States has lost its leadership on the world stage.”

Although Baker rejects the depiction that the U.S. is no longer a global leader, he said Trump has been able to tap into the anger and uncertainty.

Baker was introduced by his daughter, Kitty (ND ’16), who read tweets posted about him during the November debate, including, “the British guy with no hair is winning this I think” and “Gerard Baker looks like the suspicious British crew member turned villain in every sci-fi movie ever made.”


Leaders of the student club Moneythink had an opportunity to work with undergraduate and high school students during a financial literacy lunch organized by Notre Dame Multicultural Student Programs and Services. Moneythink is a national club devoted to equipping youth to navigate financial decisions. During the December event, Yoojin Na and Shadia Ajam talked to the students about practical money matters such as using a debit card and planning a budget.


Robin D. Kistler has been named as the director of non-degree programs at the Stayer Center for Executive Education as of April 1. Kistler is responsible for the administration, strategy and promotion of the Stayer Center’s suite of non-degree programs, which includes open enrollment, online
and custom certificate offerings. She previously served as director of executive education and the interim director of the Stephenson Entrepreneurship Institute at Louisiana State University. Kistler received a B.A. in communications/advertising and an M.A. in communications management and organizational development from LSU.

Robert F. Easley took over as the chair of the Management Department as of January 1. Easley, who joined Notre Dame as a visiting professor in 1994, is an associate professor of Information Technology Management. He earned his Ph.D. from Indiana University School of Business, his MBA from Pennsylvania State University and his B.A. from the University of Illinois. His current research focuses on economic modeling of internet auctions, privacy and piracy in internet commerce, and collaborative technologies.

Dear Mr. Kristof

Year One. Who will decide the course of the rest of your life? Whether your days will be filled with giggles, tears, love or wonder? Will you decide your fate? Will your genes? Your ZIP code? Or the people you meet?

As the video plays, Cassidy McDonald’s voice floats over a montage of images and interviews, which range from a gurgling baby to a former meth addict trying to put together a new life. Although the video is just short of three minutes, it’s clear: McDonald is seeking answers to some of life’s very deep, very thought-provoking questions.

The video and accompanying essay were part of the business major’s winning entry to The New York Times’ journalism contest, “Win a Trip With Nick.” “Nick” refers to the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Nicholas Kristof, who created the competition in 2006 to give undergraduate and graduate students at American colleges and universities an opportunity to report and raise awareness about global issues such as poverty and solutions in the developing world.

McDonald will spend the summer traveling with Kristof and blogging for The New York Times about her experiences. The Madison, Wis., native, who is earning a marketing degree with a minor in the John W. Gallivan Program in Journalism, Ethics and Democracy, is the managing editor of ND’s student magazine, Scholastic. Although just a junior, McDonald’s impressive résumé includes an internship with 60 Minutes, as well as volunteering for several trips to a medical clinic in La Ceiba, Honduras, to administer audiology exams in Spanish and distribute free hearing aids to children and adults.

“I’m incredibly honored by the opportunity to travel alongside Mr. Kristof; his reporting is my favorite example of journalism as a force for good. He reports on the world’s most marginalized people, but his work doesn’t discourage — it inspires,” McDonald said.

Bright Kids

Poets & Quants for Undergrads, a popular higher ed news website, named three Mendoza students to its “Best and Brightest Business Majors – Class of 2016,” a list of 50 scholars from top undergraduate programs nationwide. Ethan Muehlstein (IT MGT) and twins Cristina (FIN) and Carolina Gutierrez (FIN) were selected as students “who reflected the best of their school in terms of academic performance, extracurricular leadership, personal character, and innate potential.”

15th Annual Arthur W. Page Society Case Writing Competition in Corporate Communications

First Place: Christopher Cellante and Timothy Kelly, both 2015 graduates of the ND Law School, for their case study, “Barney’s New York: A Case of ‘Shop and Frisk,’” examining the 2013-14 controversy over shoplifting and racial profiling at one of New York’s iconic luxury retailers.

Second Place: Meredith Alexander, Ashley Chase and Kelly Chase, all MBA Class of 2016, for their case study, “Sony Pictures Entertainment, Inc.: A Cybersecurity Attack from North Korea,” investigating the 2014 data breach at Sony and the subsequent reputational and business management challenges.

All five students were enrolled in the graduate business course Corporate Communication and produced original case studies as a part of their classroom assignments. The winners were announced
in early April.

Cupid hearts ND

Wolf & Shepherd, a venture founded by former ND decathlete Justin Schneider (ND ’11) that won the 2015 McCloskey Business Plan Competition, was selected as one of just six startups to advance to the final round of Cupid’s Cup 2016. The prestigious national competition was founded by Under Armour’s CEO Kevin Plank to encourage entrepreneurship. Another ND venture, specialty menswear apparel designer Ash & Anvil, co-founded by Eric Huang (MGTE ’13) made it as far as the semifinals.

  • 200 original entries from 98 colleges and universities
  • 12 semifinalists – including 2 ND teams
  • 6 finalists competing for $100,000 prize

The judges ultimately selected Javazen, a coffee company, as the winner on April 7.