Faculty Spotlight: Suzan Murphy

Bill NeilsonSuzan Murphy, distinguished lecturer in finance and assistant to the head of the Department of Finance, joined the UT faculty in 1991 as an adjunct math instructor. Murphy brought experience as a high school math, accounting, and business teacher as well as several years as a certified management consultant for a variety of clients. Since 1996, Murphy has served in countless capacities throughout the College of Business Administration. In her role as a distinguished lecturer, she teaches financial management and financial statement analysis to undergraduate students as well as general finance courses in the full-time and Professional MBA programs. As the assistant to the head of the Department of Finance, Murphy consults on matters including undergraduate curriculum, class scheduling, scholarship administration, etc.

However, in addition to the teaching that earns Murphy evaluation scores higher than the university, college, and department averages, she stays just as busy with service to countless groups of students. She has served the Business Education for Talented Students program, a diversity initiative within the college, since 2007 by teaching personal finance to high school students; managed and coordinated off campus study for upper level finance students since 2003; and served on countless committees including scholarship advisory boards, awards committees, the All Campus Events judge panel, and search committees. Perhaps one of her largest roles has been since 2004 as the faculty advisor for the Financial Management Association, an organization for undergraduate and graduate finance majors. In addition to coordinating speakers for monthly meetings, Murphy manages annual trips to New York for students to see first-hand Wall Street investment banking firms, the New York Stock Exchange, etc., as well as trips to Omaha, Nebraska for private meetings with famed investor Warren Buffet. These are trips of a lifetime for the students who benefit from the experiential learning they receive while traveling. In addition to New York and Omaha, Murphy has also taken the FMA to Chicago to visit the Chicago Mercantile, Options Exchange, and the Board of Trade.

Murphy’s tireless service to the university has not gone unnoticed. She has been honored with numerous awards including the College of Business Administration’s Outstanding Commitment to Students Award, the university’s Citation for Excellence in Teaching, the Allen H. Keally Award for lecturers in the college, and the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Advising, just to name a few. She has also been honored by the National Alumni Association for outstanding teaching and by Order of Omega, the Greek leadership honor society, for faculty service.

Outside the university, Murphy has served as vice president of programs for Financial Executives International’s Knoxville chapter; participated in Leadership Knoxville; served as treasurer and member of the executive board of the Metropolitan Drug Commission; been an active member of Knox Heritage Society, Scenic Knoxville, and Sequoyah Hills Preservation Society; served as grants chair and member of the executive board of directors of the Knoxville affiliate of the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation; and numerous parent organizations including her children’s PTA and parents’ club groups.

Murphy is a native of Houston, Texas, and earned her undergraduate degree from the University of New Mexico and MBA from Loyola University. She also has completed graduate level coursework in math at UT. In her free time, she enjoys working out (jogging, Spinning classes, and working with a personal trainer) and entertaining friends and family. Murphy and her husband, Department of Accounting and Information Management Head and Deloitte Professor in Accounting, Dan Murphy, enjoy spending time at their lake house in Louisville, Tennessee, and their beach house on Kiawah Island, South Carolina. The Murphy’s have two children, Caroline and Patrick. Caroline graduated from UT with her Master of Accountancy degree in 2010 and lives in Connecticut, working as a CPA with PricewaterhouseCoopers. Patrick is a student at UT, majoring in theatre, and will graduate next year.

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