McRae C. (Mac) Banks (BA, PhD Virginia Tech; MA Northwestern) is Margaret and Harrell Hill Distinguished Professor of Entrepreneurship and dean of the Bryan School of Business and Economics at UNC Greensboro. From 1995-2010, he served in a dean-equivalent position as head of the Department of Management (now the Foisie Business School) at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI). Prior to that he served on the business faculties at Mississippi State University and Radford University.
Under Mac’s leadership of the Bryan School, a new vision and mission were developed in 2011, spawning numerous changes. The Bryan School is now recognized as an up-and-coming business school based on its programmatic innovations, substantial enrollment increases, meaningful improvements in student retention and graduation, and greater diversity among students, staff, and faculty. Students now complete more than 300 consulting projects annually for organizations. While education quality has been improving, faculty productivity and impact have increased substantially. Faculty research has increased from 1.2 peer reviewed journal articles per faculty member per year to 2.6, and publications in top journals have tripled; sponsored research has increased approximately 40 percent; and faculty members annually fill approximately 80 editorial roles on peer reviewed journals. Similar improvements and successes were experienced under Mac’s leadership at WPI, which went from unaccredited to candidacy to accredited to the #1 part-time MBA in the U.S. (Businessweek) in 2009.
Mac’s involvement with AACSB accreditation started in 1982 when Radford University was contemplating entering the accreditation process. It continued at Mississippi State and accelerated when he arrived at WPI. Since 1995, he has attended many AACSB conferences and seminars, served as a speaker many times long before AACSB started keeping track of such activity, and served as chair or co-chair of two affinity groups. In addition to the many accreditation visits he has served on and chaired, Mac served on the AACSB Continuous Improvement Review Committee for five years, including as chair in 2016-18, and as a member of AACSB’s Committee on Accreditation Policy, 2015-18. He is presently in his third year on the AACSB Board of Directors and is a member of the Finance & Investment Committee and previously served on the Nominating Committee.
For many years Mac served on the Board of Directors of the Society for Advancement of Management, including serving as that organization’s international president. He was director of Placement Services for the Academy of Management, chair of the Entrepreneurship Division of the Academy of Management and chair of the American Society for Engineering Education’s Entrepreneurship and Innovation Division.