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Winners Announced from Baylor's Business Ethics Forum on Entrepreneurship

Dec. 3, 2012

BEF

Baylor University's Hankamer School of Business hosted the 11th annual Dale P. Jones Business Ethics Forum, Nov. 7-16, 2012. The event was sponsored by The Dale P. Jones Ethics Endowment, The Chavanne Chair of Christian Ethics in Business Endowment, BancAssets and BancVue.

In addition to bringing together speakers and industry experts from around the country, the forum hosted two competitions for students: a Business Ethics Case Competition for Baylor students and an invitational MBA National Case Competition in Ethical Leadership.

In the Business Ethics Case Competition, teams consisted of four Baylor business students. The first place teams from each league received a $1,000 award. The competition also bestowed two special honors: Best Presenter and Best Q&A. This year's winners were as follows:

League #1:

  • Team winners: Brooke Borgias, Hannah Franzen, Hannah Gore and Ileana Sanchez
  • Best Presenter in League: Hannah Franzen
  • Best Q&A in League: Hannah Gore

League #2:

  • Team winners: Patrick Kendrick, Angela Ombaso, Bryson Reynolds and Justin Shannon
  • Best Presenter in League: Angela Ombaso
  • Best Q&A in League: Michael Heath

League #3:

  • Team winners: Brian Browder, Tanya Bukowski, Charles Kelly and Matt Richey
  • Best Presenter in League: Cody Orr
  • Best Q&A in League: Kendra Collette

League #4:

  • Team winners: Reece Fitzgerald, Stephen Garner, Ryan Gebhart and Jerry Hodge
  • Best Presenter in League: Preston Williams
  • Best Q&A in League: Matthew Polk

League #5:

  • Team winners: Louis Agnone, Wenhui An, Bracken Arnhart and Sunkanmi Agbomeji
  • Best Presenter in League: Joy Lee
  • Best Q&A in League: Joe Aviles

League #6:

  • Team winners: Jeff Bischoff, Sherri Sanchez, Josh Smith and Thomas Totoe
  • Best Presenter in League: Charlie Gasmire
  • Best Q&A in League: Chase Cutler

Graduate students from across the country competed in the MBA National Case Competition in Ethical Leadership sponsored by BancAssets and BancVue. Participants in this year's competition represented Auburn University, Baylor University, Iowa State University, Pepperdine University, Texas A&M University, the University of Florida, the University of Illinois, the University of Iowa, the University of Minnesota, the University of Notre Dame, the University of Pittsburgh and the University of Washington. Teams who came in first, second and third place received $5,000, $1,200 and $1,000 respectively. This year's winners were as follows:

First Place

Pepperdine University: Thomas Mitchell, Adam Buffum, Maria Carrasco and Neha Shrivistava

Second Place

University of Illinois: Christopher Angelica, Melissa Chua, Ameya Alkari and Arjun Dutta

Third Place

Baylor University: Josh Smith, Jeff Bischoff, Hunter Miller and Preston Williams

Best Presenters

Morgan Hawley Ford, University of Minnesota; Adam Day, Texas A&M University; Kim Thelwell, University of Florida

Best Q/A

Jake Titus, University of Minnesota; Sindhu Rao, University of Pittsburgh; Spencer Siegel, University of Florida

The forum engages students, faculty, alumni and business leaders in discussions of major ethical issues facing the business world today. This year's theme, "Starting with Integrity: Entrepreneurship and Ethics," aimed to help students understand the importance of ethics in experiential and interactive ways.

The forum began with a panel discussion on Nov. 7 featuring David Busch, CEO of Hawaiian Falls; Chris Deleenher, CEO of Sunzer Consulting Group; Morgan Johnson, director of the Slum Empowerment Ministry, Come, Let's Dance; and Gil Sheehan, founder and president of Barrington Gifts.

Mitchell Neubert, Ph.D., associate professor and Chavanne Chair of Christian Ethics in Business at Baylor, moderated the panel. "The panel guests highlighted diverse ways Christians can intentionally live out their faith through business, and they encouraged the audience to bring their faith to all their entrepreneurial endeavors," Neubert said.

"For the first time, we developed a case for the MBA competition and had the subject of the case also speak at the luncheon that the MBAs attended," said Marlene Reed, Baylor Business Entrepreneur-in-Residence. "The ethical dilemma of the MBA case was one faced by Cecilia Levine, founder and President of MFI International. During the luncheon, Levine suggested that one's integrity is like a shawl that Mexican women wear that wraps them up from the time they are a baby until death," Reed said.

This year's keynote speaker was Nancy Richards, founder and chairman of the First Preston HT family of companies. Richards also founded HomeTelos, a technology company specializing in online real estate sales and management. She was recognized as Ernst & Young's 2004 Southwest "Entrepreneur of the Year" for Real Estate/Construction/Hospitality and won their prestigious National Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2005.

"One of the great outcomes of the Entrepreneurship Ethics Conference was the opportunity for students to hear entrepreneurs discuss some of the ethical dilemmas they face that are unique to their particular industries," Reed said. "Each of them suggested that it was their commitment to Christian values that guided their lives and helped them make decisions with which they could live."

The forum concluded with a panel discussion on "Entrepreneurial Ethics" on Nov. 16. Panelists included Kim Galvan from Bentwood Realty, David Hill from BancAssets, Blake Mattson from Mattson Financial Services and Jake Roye from Chick-fil-A.

"From the initial Business as Missions panel to keynotes Nancy Richards and Cecilia Levine, and then echoed again in our concluding panel, we were challenged to hold fast to our ethics and never cross the line into unethical behavior," Neubert said. "We were reminded through the stories of successful entrepreneurs that despite particularly challenging short-term costs, acting ethically offers the long-term benefits of building trust and enhancing your reputation."

Past business ethics forum topics have covered cyber ethics, marketing rights and responsibilities, finance and ethics, the responsibilities of business, conflicts of interest for leaders and leadership lessons from Enron and Anderson.

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