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School of Business names 2018 Distinguished Alumni Award recipients

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

LAWRENCE — The University of Kansas School of Business will honor Jerry Jennett and Robert “Bob” Taylor with its 2018 Distinguished Alumni Award.

Jennett and Taylor will receive the award for their dedication to business excellence, community service and commitment to KU on Thursday, April 19, during a private reception at the Kansas Union.Jerry Jennett

Jerry Jennett graduated with a business degree from KU in 1963. He is chairman of Georgia Gulf Sulfur Corp., a Valdosta, Georgia-based company that processes and distributes sulfur products.

Along with his wife, Kay, Jennett endowed the Jennett Finance Scholars Program at the School of Business. The program provides finance majors at KU with a scholarship as well as unique learning and networking opportunities. They previously established a scholarship in the School of Business for undergraduates who work for or hold internships with KU Athletics.

Bob Taylor earned bachelor’s degrees in mathematics and economics from KU in 1969. He has held numerous leadership roles throughout his career and founded fractional aircraft company Executive AirShare Corp. Taylor retired from the company but remains a director and shareholder. He also serves as director of Blue Valley Ban Corp.

Taylor is a longtime member of the School of Business Dean’s Advisory Board and currently sits on the Executive Committee as well as on the KU Endowment Board of Trustees Executive Committee. 

The School of Business established the Distinguished Alumni Award in 1998 to honor outstanding graduates and supporters. To date, 59 alumni have been recognized with the award. Past recipients include investor David Booth, entrepreneur Tim Barton, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas president and CEO Robert Kaplan, Cerner Corp. co-founder Cliff Illig and Emprise Bank president and CEO Mike Michaelis.

Award recipients are chosen from the nominations of other alumni and the dean’s advisory board. Candidates are selected on the basis of their business success and service to their communities and to KU.

The School of Business will also recognize the winner of the 2018 Emerging Leader Award at Thursday's reception. Created in 2016 by the school in partnership with KU Endowment, the award is given annually to a young alumnus or alumna who has excelled in their career and made lasting impacts on the university.

The school and accounting program are accredited by AACSB International, The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business
Our Finance Scholars travel to Wall Street every year
Students in Applied Portfolio Management class manage a fund valued at $1 million
Business students get hands-on experience valuing and analyzing investments
Top 20 undergraduate accounting program —Bloomberg Businessweek
One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
5th nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets: Colleges," Military Times
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