URI appoints new College of Business Administration dean

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KINGSTON, R.I. — August 24, 2015 — An innovative academic leader and researcher, Maling Ebrahimpour of St. Petersburg, Fla., has been appointed dean of the University of Rhode Island College of Business Administration. Donald H. DeHayes, URI provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, made the appointment following a national search.

A former professor of management at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg, Ebrahimpour succeeds Professor Kathryn Jervis who has served as interim dean since January.

“With his entrepreneurial style, strategic planning and support for innovative business education programs, Maling Ebrahimpour received substantial support for his candidacy from University community members,” said DeHayes. “Given his years of experience as an academic leader at other institutions, Maling has an excellent track record and I am confident he will provide dynamic leadership to move the college forward in preparing the next generation of business leaders, and establish productive partnerships in support of our state’s economic development.”

Most recently, Ebrahimpour served as business dean at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg. Highlights of his five-year term included the creation of several new programs that led to increased enrollment and strong job opportunities for graduates. These programs included the entrepreneurship major that was ranked first as an Emerging Entrepreneurship Program in USA (2013); the completely online MBA that ranked in the Top 50 (official ranking is 32) in 2014 by US News and World Report; the new undergraduate global business major; and the one-year MBA program. The MBA program changes resulted in a four-fold growth in the graduate program. At the same time, he successfully raised more than $17 million to build a new 68,000 square-foot College of Business building.

“I am extremely excited about returning to URI. Serving as the Dean of the College of Business Administration is an honor and a privilege. Indeed, I am humbled by the support that I have received from faculty, staff, board members, alumni, students and many others inside and outside of the university,” said Ebrahimpour. “I am thrilled and look forward to working with the college’s distinguished faculty, dedicated staff and our outstanding students to contribute to the success of the college and university. The strategic transformational goals outlined by President David Dooley and supported by Provost DeHayes call for the College’s entrepreneurial engagement at the University and with the business community. This fits perfectly with my experience and I know having such university-wide goals will benefit the future business leaders in Rhode Island and around the globe.”

Prior to his position at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg, Ebrahimpour was dean of the Gabelli School of Business at Roger Williams University. During his tenure (2002-2008), he modified and implemented changes to the school’s strategic plan, added several successful new academic programs, and established the school’s center for finance and one for security studies. He also led the school through a three-year process to achieve its initial accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International.

Before joining Roger Williams, Ebrahimpour had served with increasing levels of responsibility and distinction as professor, department chair, and associate dean at URI’s College of Business Administration for 18 years. During his tenure at URI, he worked with teams to establish the college’s doctoral program and the MBA/Pharmacy program. He spearheaded URI’s first online business courses in the late 1990s when few people knew about online teaching. In less than three years as chair for the Management Information Systems (MIS) department, enrollment increased more than 70 percent, from 30 to 250 students choosing to major in MIS.

An active researcher, Ebrahimpour has authored or co-authored more than 100 articles that have been published in scientific journals and proceedings. Most of his work focuses on various issues of quality in service and manufacturing companies. He has served as a consultant to various companies around the world.

He received his Ph.D. in business administration from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, his MBA from the University of Nebraska-Kearney and his undergraduate degree from the Institute of Advanced Accounting, Tehran, Iran. He has served on the editorial review board of several journals, including Journal of Quality Management, Journal of Operations Management, and International Journal of Production Research.