Business education veteran Dr. Ray Eldridge has been appointed dean of Lipscomb University’s College of Business, university Provost W. Craig Bledsoe has announced.
Eldridge, senior associate dean and professor of management in the college, has served as interim dean of the College of Business since May 31, 2014. He succeeds Turney Stevens, dean emeritus of the College of Business.
“Under Dr. Eldridge’s leadership, the College of Business has become one of the fastest-growing graduate business schools in Tennessee and has been recognized nationally,” said Bledsoe. “Ray possesses an authentic approach to leadership that engenders the best efforts from his faculty and supports innovative programming that has opened our program to new markets. I look forward to seeing the many ways the college will continue to flourish under his leadership.”
As interim dean, Eldridge led the college to an increase in enrollment in its 16 undergraduate and four graduate programs, topping more than 700 students for the first time in university history. He has led the College of Business to many important accomplishments, including being ranked in the top 50 by Bloomberg BusinessWeek as having one of the best part-time MBA programs in the nation, completing a two-year business accreditation review with no conditions noted, launching a bold business-as-mission program, adding a telepresence center that adds a high-touch and high tech learning environment, raising significant funds for various initiatives and developing a unique Master of Management program that is now informing an immersive, integrated experience for undergraduate students. Eldridge also led the effort to make Lipscomb the fourth university in the nation to achieve ACBSP Accounting specialization accreditation.
“I am excited about the momentum we have created in the College of Business to guide our students to not only reach their educational and professional goals, but to also equip them to embrace business as mission,” said Eldridge. “We are on ‘fast forward’ to becoming a significant college of business, however you define it — whether it be through innovative and relevant programs, renewed focus on values and virtues, engagement with the business community, quality through accreditation, first-time national ranking, impressive faculty, the intersection of faith and business, unique student experiential opportunities. All of that is working together to make an impact.”
Prior to joining the Lipscomb faculty in 2008, he completed more than 20 years as a U.S. Army officer. A logistics expert, Eldridge’s career with the Army included multiple deployments around the world; commanding soldiers at the battalion, company and platoon level; providing planning and support for worldwide military and humanitarian operations for logistics including for more than 15,000 security personnel at the 1996 Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta; and supervising a multi-million-dollar NATO production facility and depot which included an international European Union (EU) workforce. He has also served in professorships at Syracuse University and Freed-Hardeman University, where he was dean of Freed-Hardeman’s School of Business for three years.
Eldridge has received numerous academic and professional recognitions for his work in Organizational Excellence by serving on the Board of Commissioners for ACBSP, a national accrediting body for business education; serving on the board of examiners for the Baldrige National Quality Award; and being selected as a senior examiner for the Tennessee Center for Performance Excellence, among numerous others. He is an alumnus of the Leadership Franklin and Leadership Middle Tennessee programs and is a member of the Better Business Bureau of Middle Tennessee board, the Fort Campbell Retired Soldier Advisory Board as well as other board and committee appointments. His education includes a doctorate, two master’s degrees and a diploma from the U.S. Army Command & General Staff College and an undergraduate degree from The Citadel.
Lipscomb University’s College of Business is accredited by the ACBSP for undergraduate and graduate programs. It offers the Bachelor of Business Administration degree in five majors and eight areas of graduate study leading to an MBA, a Master of Accountancy, a Master of Human Resources or a Master of Management degree. It is among the 15 percent of the business schools in the nation to require a global experience for its students. It has been recognized as one of the top 25 colleges of business in the nation for veterans. It is home of the Hilton & Sallie Dean Institute for Corporate Governance and Integrity, the Center for Global Connectedness and Collaboration and the Center for Entrepreneurship.
For more information about Lipscomb’s College of Business, visit business.lipscomb.edu.