McGlothlin Teaching Award Given to Exceptional Business and Law Professors

  • Outstanding Educators
    Outstanding Educators  This year's McGlothlin Awards for Exceptional Teaching go to Professor Ron Hess of the Raymond A. Mason School of Business and Professor Laura Heymann of William & Mary Law School.  
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The 2024 McGlothlin Award for Exceptional Teaching has been granted to Professor Ronald L. Hess, Lawrence J. Ring Executive MBA Associate Professor of Business, from the Raymond A. Mason School of Business and Professor Laura A. Heymann, James G. Cutler Professor of Law, from William & Mary's Law School.

Since its establishment in 2016, the annual McGlothlin Award has been bestowed upon exceptional educators at William & Mary. This distinguished accolade recognizes the unwavering dedication to teaching exhibited by two outstanding professors—one from William & Mary Law School and the other from the Raymond A. Mason School of Business. Not only does this recognition celebrate their sustained commitments to education, but it also includes a prize for each recipient, generously provided by James W. McGlothlin '62, J.D. '64, LL.D. '00, and Frances Gibson McGlothlin '66, L.H.D. '18.

Laura A. Heymann

Laura A. Heymann, James G. Cutler Professor of Law, joined the William & Mary faculty in 2005. She served as the Class of 2014 Professor of Law from 2011 to 2014, the Chancellor Professor of Law from 2018 to 2023, and the Kelly Professor of Excellence in Teaching from 2021 to 2023.

"Professor Heymann's devotion to teaching, scholarship, and leadership place her in the pantheon of excellent faculty at William & Mary Law School," said Dean and Trustee Professor of Law A. Benjamin Spencer. "We are grateful for her tireless work on behalf of students and the Law School and are not surprised that she is receiving this latest signal honor for her many contributions as a teacher."

Evan Criddle, Associate Dean for Research and Faculty Development at the Law School, praised Heymann's rigorous teaching style and devotion to her students.

"Professor Heymann sets high expectations for her students; she challenges them to reach for excellence, but she also goes the extra mile to help individual students succeed—both in the classroom and in their personal and professional lives," Criddle said. "Professor Heymann is the kind of brilliant and caring mentor that every student hopes to find in law school."

Professor Heymann received the McGlothlin Teaching Award from Dean A. Benjamin Spencer during the Law School’s commencement ceremony on May 18.The author of nearly 30 scholarly articles and book chapters in the fields of copyright law, trademark law, and related topics, Heymann has taught both Torts and Contracts to first-year students as well as intellectual property courses to upper-level students.

Quickly establishing herself as an expert teacher, Heymann received the Walter L. Williams, Jr., Memorial Teaching Award in 2008 and William & Mary's Thomas Jefferson Teaching Award in 2012. She has also received a Plumeri Award for Faculty Excellence and the John Marshall Award for leadership and service.

Heymann served as Vice Dean from 2013 to 2017 and as Senior Advisor to the Dean from 2021 to 2023. She served as co-chair of the Law School's Inclusion Task Force in 2018–2019 and is regularly called upon by William & Mary's main campus to perform important roles for the university. For many years, she facilitated leadership training for select cohorts of first-year students, in a program she founded, and has been a mentor to many students, particularly those who were the first in their family to go to college.

Before coming to William & Mary, Heymann was the inaugural Frank H. Marks Visiting Associate Professor of Law and Administrative Fellow in the Intellectual Property Law Program at The George Washington University Law School, and before that was an assistant general counsel at America Online, Inc.; an associate at Wilmer, Cutler and Pickering in Washington, D.C.; and a law clerk to the Hon. Patricia M. Wald of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

Heymann received her B.A. in English, magna cum laude, from Yale, after which she worked as an assistant editor at St. Martin's Press in New York. She then earned her J.D. at the University of California at Berkeley School of Law, where she was elected to the Order of the Coif and served as the Book Review Editor on the California Law Review

Ronald L. Hess

Ronald L. Hess, Lawrence J. Ring Executive MBA Associate Professor of Business, MBA '94, PhD., began as a Visiting Professor at William & Mary's Raymond A. Mason School of Business in the spring of 1999. He briefly served as an Assistant Professor at the University of Central Florida's College of Business Administration before returning to William & Mary in 2001. Since January 2007, he has continued his tenure at the Mason School as an Associate Professor in Marketing and is currently serving as the Faculty Director of the Online MBA Program.

"Ron exemplifies outstanding leadership qualities, providing invaluable guidance and support to colleagues and students," remarked Dean Todd Mooradian, T.C. and Elizabeth Clark Professor of Business Administration. "His impactful contributions reverberate throughout our Mason School community, and presenting him with the McGlothlin Teaching Award is a privilege."

Lawrence J. Ring, Executive Master of Business Administration Alumni Professor, Emeritus, speaks to his long-standing camaraderie.

"I am uniquely positioned to comment on his excellence," said Ring. "I was his professor, and I hired him. He is a world-class educator. Ron can take complex theoretical concepts from literature and make them exciting and transparent. He makes it his business to know his topic, its relevance, his audience, their interests, and why they are there," conveyed Ring. "Each time he walks into the classroom, he purposefully delivers specifically targeted learning opportunities."

Hess's exceptionally personalized approach has led to consistent recognition in student course evaluations and other notable accolades. Hess has been consistently recognized for his exceptional teaching and commitment to student success. Before receiving this year's prestigious McGlothlin Teaching Award, he received the Executive MBA Outstanding Teaching Award, the Alfred N. Page Master of Business Administration Graduate Teaching Award in 2022, and the Outstanding Professor of the Year award from the Full-time MBA Program in 2018. His dedication to teaching excellence has also been acknowledged in numerous other awards throughout his tenure. These awards collectively underscore Professor Hess's exceptional teaching abilities and profound influence on students.

Ron's commitment to integrating real-world experiences into his teaching resonates deeply with the Mason School's vision of "Bringing Business into the Business School." Ron's classes are lauded for their relevance and pragmatic approach, with many based on cases and research conducted in collaboration with his colleagues and industry experts. Hess has authored countless case studies in his field of expertise, enriching both executive education and Mason's MBA and EMBA programs. His contribution to academia cannot be encapsulated succinctly, as his impact is far too vast.

Pam Suzadail, Associate Dean and Executive Director for the Center for Online Learning, commends Ron's dedication, innovation, and leadership.

"Ron's teaching methods have left an indelible mark on enriching student experiences through innovative approaches and student-focused activities," said Suzadail. "His influence extends beyond individual courses to program-wide initiatives and always with a dedication to fostering meaningful connections."

Hess is a distinguished researcher in the realm of marketing and is well-known for his significant contributions across a multifaceted tapestry of scholarly endeavors. With several manuscripts under review, he delves into the intricacies of employee behavior, buyer-seller relationships, innovation capabilities, and several other topics unveiling relevant insights. His work encompasses studies on customer satisfaction, omnichannel promotions, service failures, organizational justice, trust, and much more. Hess's conference presentations echo his expertise in deciphering complexities within service and retail domains. Further enriching academia, his authored cases dissect the strategic maneuvers of industry giants, offering nuanced perspectives on e-commerce innovation, marketing strategies, and customer relationship management. Supported by well over a dozen research grants, Hess's tenure is marked by an unwavering dedication to unraveling the intricacies of business dynamics, shaping the discourse of marketing and organizational behavior with each scholarly endeavor. His extensive publications have advanced marketing, offering valuable insights for academics, practitioners, and students alike.

Ronald L. Hess boasts an impressive educational background with a strong emphasis on marketing and organizational behavior. He culminated his academic journey with a PhD in Marketing from Virginia Tech in 1999. Before his doctoral pursuits, Hess earned his MBA from William & Mary in 1994, garnering accolades such as the William & Mary Sancetta Memorial Fund Award for Doctoral Studies and the William & Mary MBA Fellowship. His academic journey began with a Bachelor of Arts degree from James Madison University in 1988, further solidifying his foundational expertise in marketing - a focus that has endured throughout his career.