Ajay Patel named new dean of Wake Forest’s Babcock School

Ajay PatelWake Forest University has appointed Ajay Patel as dean of the Babcock Graduate School of Management.

Wake Forest Provost and Acting President William C. Gordon announced Patel’s appointment April 6 during a press briefing at the University.

Since August 2003, Patel has served as interim dean of the Babcock School, which consistently ranks among the nation’s top accredited graduate schools of business. He has been a faculty member at the Babcock School for 11 years and associate dean for faculty and alumni affairs for the past two years.

Patel, 45, was named dean following a comprehensive and nationwide recruiting search led by a committee that included faculty, staff, students and alumni. He succeeds Charles Moyer who, after serving as dean for seven years, stepped down from that position in July 2003 to return to the Babcock School’s faculty.

“Ajay has gained valuable experience over the past year serving in the role of interim dean, and he has proven to be a valuable addition to the university’s administrative team,” Gordon said. “He has a clear understanding of the school’s great assets, as well as its current challenges, and he has the interpersonal skills needed to work effectively and collaboratively with all of the school’s constituencies. Importantly, he is widely respected within the Babcock School as an excellent teacher and scholar.”

During his time as interim dean, the Babcock School received capital campaign commitments in excess of $5 million. Before joining the Babcock School faculty in 1993, Patel served faculty appointments at the University of Missouri and Bentley College. In 2001, he was appointed as the first Babcock Research Professor of Finance. The professorship was endowed through pledge gifts from investment counseling firms and Babcock School alumni Raymond F. Bourne, Bryan Somerville and Margaret Beasley.

“One of my goals is to see the Babcock community network grow, become stronger and to develop to its full potential,” said Patel. “We have an extremely energized board of visitors and an extremely energized alumni council to help make this happen.”

During his tenure at the Babcock School, Patel has won numerous professional awards and teaching honors. He received the Educator of the Year Award in 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000 and 2002, and the 2001 Kienzle Teaching Award, given to the faculty member who represents the highest standards of teaching excellence. The recipient of the Kienzle award is chosen by Babcock alumni in a survey taken two years after their graduation. In 1997 and 2000, Patel was honored with the Outstanding Faculty Award for the Babcock School’s Charlotte evening MBA program.

Patel’s expertise is in corporate financial management and international finance. His current research focuses on executive compensation, corporate governance and foreign direct investment strategy. His work has been widely published in scholarly journals, and he has earned several awards from academic and practitioner associations.

Patel, who lives in Winston-Salem with his wife, Aparna, and their two children, received a bachelor’s degree from St. Joseph’s College in India, a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Baltimore and a doctorate from the University of Georgia.

About the Babcock Graduate School of Management. The Babcock Graduate School of Management was founded in 1969. The school consistently ranks among the world’s top accredited graduate schools of business in surveys by Business Week, the Financial Times, Forbes, U.S. News & World Report and The Wall Street Journal. The Babcock School was ranked in the nation’s top tier of entrepreneurship programs, and entrepreneurship faculty who participated in the nationwide survey ranked the school No. 1 among national programs, according to Entrepreneur magazine. The Babcock School offers full-time, fast-track executive and evening MBA programs in Winston-Salem and evening and Saturday MBA programs at its Charlotte campus. Joint degree programs also are offered with Wake Forest’s School of Law, School of Medicine, the Calloway School of Business and Accountancy, and the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.

Categories: School of Business, University Announcement