George Pierides MBA '82 is filled with pride when he looks over Alan B. Miller Hall, the two-year-old state-of-the-art facility that now houses William & Mary’s Mason School of Business.
"The building and the school are sources of great pride that I share with my fellow alumni," he said. One of the earliest donors who helped to make the project a reality, Pierides was able to name the Pierides Dean’s Conference Room in honor of his parents, Ralis George and Helen Changas Pierides.
"It’s a marvelous structure, and I’m glad to have become involved in the effort during its early days. There are so many elements that comprise an institution of this nature – students, faculty, administration and physical plant," Pierides said.
In April, he brought his parents to see the building on their 58th wedding anniversary.
"For me, to have my parents visit the space dedicated in their honor was like putting a bow on the wrapping," Pierides said. "They had the foresight to urge me to attend graduate business school, and William & Mary, in particular, and I am grateful for their financial support and guidance when I needed both."
When he came to William & Mary in 1981 to begin the MBA program, Pierides remembers taking classes on the third floor of Jones Hall -- a less than desirable location, he said. But also he remembers a huge improvement the next year when his classes moved to the then newly renovated Chancellors Hall, now Tyler Hall.
"It’s more inspiring to students, faculty and administration to be operating in a better environment," he said. During his April visit to the Mason School, Pierides said it was "heartening" to see so many of his former professors from three decades ago still teaching at the school.
After a 25-year career in the financial industry, Pierides retired in 2006 as the Senior Managing Director of Fox Asset Management LLC. His William & Mary education played a critical role in his successful career, Pierides said.
"William & Mary clearly has a wonderful reputation. The courses I took laid the foundation for what I ended up doing," he said, adding that the College "was -- and remains -- a compelling value."
Pierides has remained active at his alma mater in the MBA Mentoring Program and as an advisor to the College's Frank Batten Investment Fund. He served on The College of William & Mary Foundation Board for six years before being elected a Trustee Emeritus in October 2008.