From the series Faculty Awards for Excellence 2015

Robert J. Kegerreis Distinguished Professor of Teaching

Bud Baker

Bud Baker

Bud Baker

We’ve all heard of the phrase, “actions speak louder than words.”

No better term could describe the life of Bud Baker, Ph.D., professor in the Department of Management and International Business, in demonstrating a caring attitude toward his students and co-workers.

“You did a lot for me … at Wright State. Probably more than you will ever know,” wrote one student who had a class with Baker. “You believed in me and encouraged me, which allowed me to believe in myself.”

Melissa L. Gruys, Ph.D., professor and chair of the Department of Management and International Business, examined student evaluations of Baker and found that his ratings over a six-year period — 22 sections and eight different classes — averaged a 4.8 on a five-point rating scale.

“So many of these statements … indicate that Dr. Baker is not only one of the best instructors they have ever had, but many state emphatically that he is the best teacher they have ever had,” said Gruys.

Students praised Baker not only for his knowledge and life experience shining through but also for his care and dedication to believing in them to reach their full potential.

“As an undergraduate student, Dr. Baker was the professor that all the students hoped to get; thus I enrolled … to ensure that I was one of those students. His teaching style was indicative of his character: caring, accessible, high standards and collaborative,” said Sherri Herrick, director of Physician Services at Kettering Physician Network and a previous student of Baker’s.

Baker has helped many of his business students obtain jobs. He has been instrumental in helping hundreds of students find management and project management positions at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, from which he retired in 1991.

It is no wonder that he has received 20 teaching awards from his students and peers, including the Helmer Award as the Outstanding Management Instructor at the United States Air Force Academy, as well as Wright State’s Presidential Award for Outstanding Teaching in 1998.

Baker previously served 20 years in the U.S. Air Force as a cargo jet navigator, Strategic Air Command missile crew commander and weapons system program manager. More recently, he has worked as a consultant for the National Academies of Science in Washington, D.C., and over his career has authored over 100 publications in the fields of defense acquisition, project management and corporate governance

In his Wright State career, Baker has served twice as department chair and as associate Dean of the Raj Soin College of Business. He chaired the University Athletic Council and served on the Faculty Senate and the Senate’s Executive Committee. He’s also been elected to and chaired many committees at the department, college and university levels. In addition, he is a member of two panels within the Dayton Better Business Bureau, focusing on advertising practices and business integrity.

Baker created the curriculum for the Project Management MBA concentration and has led and taught in that program for 24 years. In addition, he has taught graduate and undergraduate courses in management, ethics, leadership, strategy and organizational development.

As one student wrote, “Dr. Baker is by far my favorite instructor. If every student had a professor like Dr. Baker, no one would ever want to leave school.”

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