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W&L Endowed Professorships Announced

On July 1, four members of the Washington and Lee University faculty will step into endowed professorships. They are Theodore C. DeLaney Jr., associate professor of history; Marcia B. France, professor of chemistry; Dennis M. Garvis, associate professor of business administration; and Elizabeth G. Oliver, professor of accounting. These promotions reflect their outstanding contributions to their disciplines and the classroom.

A fifth faculty member, the late Joan O’Mara, associate professor of art history, was named the Elizabeth Lewis Otey Professor of East Asian Studies earlier this spring. O’Mara died on May 24.

Theodore C. DeLaney Jr. has been named the first Harry E. and Mary Jayne W. Redenbaugh Term Professor, which is funded by an endowment established in 2008 by Mary Jayne W. Redenbaugh. The Redenbaugh professorship is for a three-year fixed term, and, like other term professorships, honors a long-standing member of the University faculty, typically at the associate professor rank, who is held in the highest regard as a teacher.

DeLaney has been a member of the W&L faculty since 1995. He received his B.A. from Washington and Lee University and his Ph.D. from The College of William and Mary. The head of the history department since 2007, DeLaney co-founded the African-American Studies Program at W&L in 2004. He served as its first director.

DeLaney began his research on the school desegregation of four counties in western Virginia in 2004, the 50th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education. The project is titled “Telling Our Stories: An Oral History of Desegregation in Western Virginia.” He plans on publishing a monograph based on this information.

He is also the author of articles, book chapters and book reviews, including “Surviving Defeat: The Trials of Mrs. Ex-President Tyler” in Virginia’s Civil War; “John Chavis” in American National Biography; and a review of A Class of their Own: Black Teachers in the Segregated South, by Adam Fairclough, in the Virginia Magazine of History and Biography.

Marcia B. France has been named to the first John T. Herwick M.D. Professorship in Chemistry, which was funded by an endowment established in 2009 through the estate of Mr. John T. and Mary Herwick.

As an organic chemist, her research focuses on the development of transition metal complexes of chiral Schiff base ligands as catalysts for the asymmetric cyclopropanation of olefins by diazo compounds. At W&L, she has supervised 41 Robert E. Lee Research students. She developed and taught a new course this spring, the chemistry of cooking.

France has co-authored more than 15 articles for journals, including the Journal of Organic Chemistry, Tetrahedron, Organometallics and the Journal of Chemical Education. France also holds several patents.

France also developed the W&L-St. Andrews Educational Partnership Program for Students in the Sciences and Preparing for the Health Professions, which provides a study-abroad opportunity in Scotland for pre-medical students, as well as chemistry and biology majors.

France has been a member of the W&L faculty since 1994. She received her B.S. in chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, her M.S. in chemistry from Yale University and her Ph.D. in chemistry from the California Institute of Technology.

Dennis M. Garvis has been named the first Ehrick Kilner Haight Sr. Term Professor. The professorship was funded by a gift to the Lenfest Challenge from Richard Allen Haight ’84 to honor his father.

Garvis has been a member of W&L’s faculty since 1998 and is head of the business administration department. He earned his B.B.A. from the University of Iowa College of Business, his J.D. from the University of Iowa College of Law, and his Ph.D. from Georgia State University.

He is the author of more than 10 publications, including “Characteristics of Entrepreneurial Collaborations: The Effects of Innovativeness and Risk” in Management Research and “Internal and External Influences on New Product Development Partnerships” in Proceedings of the American Society of Business and Behavioral Sciences.

Garvis also authored book chapters and paper presentations and has been on the review staff of the Journal of Legal Studies in Business.

He started the Corporate Governance Project, which collects and disseminates governance data for small to medium-size, publicly held firms. In addition to corporate governance, his past research interests include entrepreneurial collaboration and business bankruptcy.

Elizabeth G. Oliver has been named to the Lewis Whitaker Adams Professorship in Commerce, which was funded by a gift from Lizinka M. and F. Fox Benton Jr., W&L class of 1960, to honor the memory of Lewis Adams, former dean of W&L’s School of Commerce, Economics, and Politics. She will succeed Philip Cline, who held the Lewis Adams Professorship before retiring at the end of June.

Oliver joined W&L’s faculty in 1991. She received her A.B. from Mary Baldwin College; her M.A. in English from the University of Kansas; her M.S. in accounting from the University of Virginia; and her Ph.D. from Texas A&M University.

Oliver has served as associate dean of the Williams School from 1998-2003 and as head of the accounting department since 2003.

She is co-author of Financial Accounting, an introductory textbook, and more than 10 papers and research projects. She served as an ad hoc reviewer for Issues in Accounting Education and currently is ad hoc reviewer for the Journal of the Academy of Business Education.

For the American Accounting Association, Oliver currently serves on the finance committee and education committee. She also is a member of the Technical Working Group: Fraud and Forensic Accounting.