Posted by Philip Poole on 2005-07-20

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.--Beck A. Taylor has been named dean of Samford University's School of Business effective Aug. 1. Taylor currently serves as associate dean for research and faculty development for the Hankamer School of Business at Baylor University in Waco, Texas.

Taylor replaces Marlene M. Reed, who had served as acting dean since fall 2003 and retired at the end of the 2005-06 academic year.

"I am very excited to join the Samford family," Beck said. "Samford's school of business is committed to educating its students with the most current curriculum, to providing opportunities for faculty to engage their respective disciplines in meaningful ways and to nurturing leaders who will bring fresh values-based perspectives to the complex business environment."

Taylor was selected following a national search and received an "enthusiastic recommendation" from the search committee and "strong, positive endorsements" from the school of business faculty, according to Samford Provost J. Bradley Creed.

"Both President Corts and I are highly enthusiastic about Dr. Taylor's academic and professional credentials," Creed said. "He brings a high level of creative energy and administrative acumen to this very strategic role for Samford and the larger business community."

Since 1997, Taylor has served in several capacities in Baylor's business school. He has been W. H. Smith Professor of Economics and earlier served as economics graduate programs director. During the 2002-03 academic year, he was a visiting scholar in human development and psychology at the Harvard University Graduate School of Education. Earlier in his career, he was an economic analyst in Houston, Texas, with what is now Accenture.

Taylor earned a bachelor of business administration degree from Baylor in 1992 and later earned a master's degree and doctor of philosophy degree in economics from Purdue University. He received several teaching honors at Baylor and is a widely-recognized author, media commentator and consultant. He also has been actively involved in the Waco business community.

Both Creed and Taylor praised the work of Reed as acting dean. She began teaching at Samford in 1981 and had served as acting dean following the retirement of Carl Gooding in August 2003.

"Samford and Birmingham are better places today because of the 25-year teaching and community involvement of Marlene Reed," Creed noted. "With her entrepreneurial spirit and leadership, she has set the standard high for all of us in thinking strategically in the larger global business context."

"I want to express my personal gratitude to Dr. Marlene Reed, who has provided effective leadership for the school of business during this transition period," Beck said. "The current health of the School of Business is largely due to Dr. Reed's efforts."

Taylor and his wife, Julie, are parents of two children. They are active members of Fellowship Bible Church in Waco.


Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.