University News

Cecil P. McDonough Professorship to be Awarded Jan. 22

January 18, 2008

Printer friendly version

MACOMB, IL -- The inaugural Cecil P. McDonough Professorship in Western Illinois University's College of Business and Technology (CBT) will be formally awarded to a CBT faculty member Tuesday, Jan. 22. A ceremony and reception, which are open to the public, will be held at 4 p.m. Jan. 22 in Stipes Hall 501.

Finance Professor Don T. Johnson has been named the first McDonough Professor of Business. Johnson joined the faculty at Western in 1988 as an assistant professor of finance. Johnson teaches several courses involving real estate issues including finance, investments and appraisal.

He has authored and co-authored numerous articles for professional publications; he is the current editor of "Managerial Finance;" and he has conducted surveys and studies regarding real estate-related issues, such as landlords and tenants. Johnson has served as the president of the Academy of Finance (2005-2006). He is currently the vice president of MBAA International, and he will be program chair in 2008-2009 and president in 2009-2010.

Johnson won Western's inaugural Provost's Award for Excellence in Research and Creative Activities in Fall 2005 and was also the recipient of the College of Business and Technology's Award of Excellence in Research and Creative Activities (Spring 2005). He serves as adviser of Western's Rho Epsilon Real Estate Fraternity and has served as a member of the University Campus Planning and Use Committee and the North Central Accreditation Reaccreditation Task Force. From 1988-2003 Johnson was the program administrator for Western's real estate brokerage certificate and pre-licensing program.

The Cecil P. McDonough Endowed Professorship in Business is designed to recognize the highest level of scholarship and University instruction by providing support for faculty income, research and instruction materials, and professional development. The Cecil P. and Helen McDonough Academic Development Fund provides long-range academic program support and supports innovative instruction and research projects.

"An endowed professorship is one of the highest honors a college can bestow on a member of its faculty," said CBT Dean Tom Erekson. "An appointment as an endowed professor is intended to empower the individual to make significant additional contributions to his or her field and to the University."

The McDonough Professorship is awarded for a three-year renewable term to a tenured professor or associate professor from the departments of management, marketing and finance, economics, accountancy and information systems and decision sciences.

Cecil McDonough completed his business career in Indianapolis, IN, and in 1983 named Western Illinois University as beneficiary of a $1.4 million charitable remainder trust to establish the professorship and an academic development fund. McDonough's ties to Western are through a connection to former WIU Foundation Board president Jim Garner of Macomb.

McDonough and Garner's mother grew up in the same hometown, and at Garner's mother's funeral service, McDonough introduced himself to the then Foundation Board president. The two shared stories about Garner's mother and learned that they had a common interest in the insurance business. A friendship ensued and the two began exchanging letters. Garner mentioned to McDonough that he and other WIU representatives were seeking private support for the College of Business and suggested that such a project might be worthy of McDonough's consideration.

Just prior to Memorial Day in 1983, Garner received a note from McDonough indicating he was in failing health; and in a follow-up telephone conversation later, McDonough told Garner he had made some estate plans and would be willing to meet with WIU Foundation staff for possible provisions to Western. The meeting resulted in the endowed professorship -- the first for the WIU College of Business and Technology -- and the academic development fund. McDonough died in June 1983.

To qualify for the McDonough Professorship, faculty members must conduct outstanding research, teaching and/or public service that are widely recognized; exhibit an extraordinary level of productivity and impact in his/her field of study that goes beyond the existing expectations for full professors; have a level of productivity and impact that has been demonstrated for an extended period of time; and serve as a role model for faculty and students.

Posted By: Darcie Shinberger (
Office of University Communications & Marketing