At the Mason School of Business at the College of William & Mary, the subject of entrepreneurism has long been associated with Professor Richard “Dick” Ash, as he has served as both an instructor and mentor to countless students who have yearned to start their own firm, as well as directing the Miller Entrepreneurship Center. And after many years of service and work on behalf of the Mason School, Professor Ash was named the first Charles and Mari Ann Banks Clinical Professor of Entrepreneurship at a banquet on Jan. 26, 2013.
“It was always the vision for entrepreneurship at William & Mary that whatever we could achieve would be built on the foundation of the success and in partnership with our family of alumni and friends who are entrepreneurs. That has proved to be the case,” said Larry Pulley, Dean of the Mason School of Business.
The professorship was established through a gift from Charles (Honorary Alumnus ’05) and Mari Ann Banks. The couple is longtime friends and loyal supporters of the College of William & Mary and the Mason School of Business. Charlie, the former CEO of Ferguson Enterprises, was appointed to William & Mary’s Board of Visitors in 2006, and has served on the Entrepreneurship Council, the National Campaign Committee, and as a trustee of the William & Mary Business School Foundation, which he chaired from 1992 until 2001.
“We are extremely grateful to Charlie and Mari Ann for their generosity and vision in establishing this professorship. They have been models of entrepreneurship in their own lives, and their commitment strengthens the Mason School’s ability to provide training and support to aspiring entrepreneurs,” Pulley added.