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Tuesday, September 24, 2013 - Michigan Association of CPAs bestows teaching excellence award on OU accounting professor

The Michigan Association of Certified Public Accountants (MACPA) announced that Oakland University Professor of Accounting Gadis “Buck” Dillon is the recipient of its 2013 Accounting Teaching Excellence Award.

This prestigious award recognizes educators who excel in teaching accounting and promoting the Certified Public Accounting profession. The MACPA will recognize Dillon at its awards dinner Sept. 30.

"I am extremely honored to receive the Michigan Association of CPAs’ Accounting Teaching Excellence Award for 2013,” Dillon says. “During my 26 years at Oakland, I hope and believe that I have made a positive contribution to the accounting profession in Michigan and have helped many students develop into successful professionals.”

Dillon is committed to helping students realize, then reach, their educational and career goals. From creating and sustaining active, successful student organizations, introducing high school students to accounting careers and college opportunities, to guiding students in gaining professional development opportunities and seeking out financial assistance through scholarships, the impact of Dillon’s mentorship is immense.

“Since Dr. Dillon’s arrival in 1987, he played an instrumental role in raising the academic standards for our accounting students,” says Mohinder Parkash, chair, OU’s Department of Accounting and Finance in the School of Business Administration. “Through his influence, the curriculum is innovative, current and relevant and, without any reservation, our graduates are well prepared for careers in public accounting, industry and government.”

His influence can be seen throughout the business school’s accounting program.

“Learning does not end when the student leaves the classroom,” Dillon says. “I certainly expect my students to understand the classroom material, but the business community seeks more than just discipline-specific technical competence.  Professional maturity is essential.  Accordingly, I have worked to provide professional development/professional maturity experiences for my students outside the classroom.  Many students have embraced the opportunity for professional development. I believe this is my greatest contribution."

Dillon served as faculty adviser helping OU accounting students establish a chapter of Beta Alpha Psi (BAP), the national accounting fraternity in 1991.  In 1996, he was recognized as a National Outstanding Faculty Advisor for his work with Beta Alpha Psi, and he served on the National Council 1997-2000.

Since it was organized, the chapter has consistently achieved “superior chapter” status awarded by its national organization.

He also helped accounting students launch a student chapter of the National Association of Black Accountants (NABA), serving as faculty advisor since 2007.  The OU NABA chapter was formally chartered by the national organization in 2010.

Dillon leverages his participation with MACPA to create community service and growth opportunities for students. Thanks to his efforts, OU partners with MACPA to sponsor an all-day High School Leadership Conference at OU, which promotes business and accounting education to more than 200 high school students and teachers annually.

As a trustee with the Michigan Accountancy Foundation, Dillon often encourages OU students to apply for scholarships the foundation awards to accounting students for their fifth year of education, a requirement for CPA exam and certification.

In his role as a researcher, Dillon has focused on identifying student characteristics that CPA and industry recruiters value. His expertise helped OU’s business school create the ACHIEVE program, which helps guide students toward their ideal career.

“Dr. Dillon’s service to the school, university and community is, in many ways, no different than his commitment to the students’ education and their career development,” Parkash says.

“As a full-time accounting educator, you make an important and powerful impact on your students – the future of the (CPA) profession,” Peggy Dzierzawksi, president and CEO, MACPA, writes in the award letter. “Thank you … for the positive influence you have on your students.”

By Flori Meeks