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Thursday, July 14, 2011

Dr. Brian L. McGuire: Leading the world's management accountants

Contact for more information:
Betty Vawter
Senior Editor, News & Information Services
Dr. Brian L. McGuire, associate dean of the University of Southern Indiana College of Business, is chair for 2011-12 of the board of directors of the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA). The organization is the world's leading and largest association focused exclusively on advancing the management accounting profession. It has more than 65,000 members in 120 countries.

McGuire began his term July 1 and will serve through June 30, 2012. His IMA involvement began in the mid-1980s at the chapter level. Named to his first term on the national board in 1989, he was at that time the youngest member ever to serve in that role.

Recently, McGuire attended the organization's Middle East Conference in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. He addressed a general session with a presentation on the skills chief financial officers are looking for in their accounting and financial management professionals. The conference began May 10, eight days following the death of Osama bin Laden.

"To see the people who had come from all over the Middle East and to hear what was going on in their countries was amazing," McGuire said. "It meant a lot to me that they were able to come to the conference."

McGuire made presentations at several leading companies and universities in Dubai and in Jeddah and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. In Saudi Arabia, he presented a charter to IMA's newest chapter, the Eastern Provinces chapter. He met chief financial officers of the chapter's sponsoring company, Saudi Aramco, the state-owned oil company. In Riyadh, he met with financial management professionals in the headquarters of SABIC, which has a plant in Mount Vernon, Indiana.

McGuire attended a celebration for the first women in Riyadh to attain the Certified Management Accountant (CMA) credential sponsored by IMA.

"We had to go way out of the city to a location that would allow men and women to attend the same function," he said. "It was held at a country club co-owned by a Saudi prince. I could tell the women were excited not only to pass the CMA exam but also to be recognized publicly. I was pleased to be there and give them a certificate recognizing their accomplishment."

McGuire said the 100-page meeting packet he studied before the trip included substantial advice on protocol related to the culture of the Middle East.

During the conference he signed a memorandum of understanding on behalf of IMA with representatives from Sri Lanka. The document pledged collaboration on management accounting research and other issues important to the profession.

"Much of our recent growth has been international," McGuire said. "The first chapter in Russia was launched this year in Moscow."

About 20 percent of IMA membership is outside the United States. After the United States, Egypt has the next largest membership. A planned stopover there during McGuire's Middle East trip was postponed due to political conditions, but he expects to reschedule that visit. Before his term expires, he also will represent IMA at meetings in London and in Zurich and Beijing, where IMA has international offices.

Wherever he goes abroad or in the states, McGuire said chancellors, business deans, and faculty from other universities want to hear about the accounting program at USI.

"And, when they learn that I am a reviewer for AACSB International and the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools," he said, "they are interested in information about the accreditation process."

During the Middle East trip, representatives of several schools expressed interest in establishing relationships with USI, such as faculty and student exchanges or collaborative faculty research.

McGuire also will travel domestically during his year as chair. He recently returned from the IMA's 92nd annual Conference and Exposition in Orlando, Florida, where a USI accounting team tied for second in case competition. Jeanette Maier-Lytle, instructor in accounting, and McGuire were faculty sponsors. USI teams have qualified for the national finals of the competition during the last six years and won first place in 2008, 2009, and 2010. Accounting students have brought home $27,000 in award money in the six years.

Earlier this year, McGuire made eight presentations for IMA at corporations and universities in the Chicago area. Among the companies he visited were BP Corporation North America and the UPS Training Center. He spoke at an accounting conference held at the Kellogg Conference Center at Michigan State University. In June he presented a 75th anniversary certificate to IMA's Michiana Chapter, which serves the South Bend, Indiana, area.

A group of students from the College of Business will attend the annual IMA Student Leadership Conference in November where McGuire will be a featured speaker. The meeting will be in Cincinnati, Ohio. Other dates on his schedule in the coming months are presentations at the annual meeting of the American Accounting Association in Denver, a meeting of former IMA officers and directors in San Antonio, and a meeting of the Arizona Chapter of the Sun in Phoenix. He will attend IMA board meetings in Miami, San Antonio, and Las Vegas.

The IMA Lincoln Trail Regional Council provides scholarships for USI students to attend the annual student conference. In addition, the local chapter provides a scholarship each year to an outstanding junior majoring in accounting. McGuire, Maier-Lytle, Dr. Mehmet Kocakulah, and Dr. Les Nunn of the USI accounting faculty serve on the board of directors of the IMA Evansville Chapter.

McGuire said IMA is important for its members beginning in their student years and throughout their careers. The organization offers networking, leadership development, the CMA certification, and professional education.

IMA was formed in 1919. McGuire is the first board chair from Indiana since 1958.

In addition to serving as associate dean of the College of Business, McGuire is director of the Master of Business Administration program and professor of accounting. He serves on the global board of Beta Alpha Psi, an honorary organization for students and professionals in financial information. He joined USI in 1995. McGuire was named the recipient of the University's 2010 Integra Distinguished Professor Award.

He will be featured in the August 2011 issue of the IMA publication Strategic Finance.

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