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Michigan State Professor Doug Hughes to Chair the Muma College of Business Marketing Department

By Keith Morelli

Doug Hughes

TAMPA (June 28, 2019) -- Michigan State University’s Doug Hughes is making the trip down to the Sunshine State to land in the chair of the Marketing Department at USF’s Muma College of Business. And while leaving the icy north for the humid south, he’s convinced he’s bound for the right place at the right time.

“I was looking for a new challenge at a great college/university in a more vibrant city and in a warmer climate,” he said. “I have the sense that USF, and in particular the Muma College of Business, are headed in a very positive direction. Also, frankly, it is not all that common to find the combination of a strong university in an area that provides the kind of lifestyle that is available in Tampa.”

He has chaired the department at Michigan State since 2017 and has been a faculty member there since 2008.

Leaving was not an easy decision.

“I am very proud of what we accomplished in the Marketing Department at MSU’s Broad College of Business during my three years as chair and I had a very fulfilling 11 years there overall,” he said.

He has taught undergraduate, master's, and doctoral-level courses, as well as executive education seminars in both marketing and sales management, and has received several national and university teaching awards, including the AMA McGraw-Hill/Irwin Sales Teacher of the Year Award, the Provost's Teaching Excellence Award and The Sales Excellence Institute's Teacher of the Year Award.

Looking forward, Hughes doesn’t see any immediate changes coming within the Marketing Department, he said.

“I do not come in with a pre-conceived agenda,” he said. “My sense is that there are both great strengths and opportunities here and my first task is to observe and listen and then collaboratively chart a course that leverages the talents of our faculty and staff in concert with the university, college and department mission … ”

He earned a PhD from the University of Houston, an MBA from Michigan State and a bachelor’s degree in marketing from the University of Tennessee. His research centers on managerial issues in marketing, with a special emphasis on salesperson decision-making, sales-force management, brand relationships and the marketing-sales and sales-service interfaces.

Hughes has published articles in the Journal of Marketing, the Journal of Marketing Research, the Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, the Journal of Retailing, the International Journal of Research in Marketing, Marketing Letters and other premier academic journals. And, he is editor-in-chief of the Journal of Personal Selling and Sales Management.

He takes over for Donna Davis, who has chaired the department since 2016 and over a time of growth and accomplishment.

Over the past three years, the Marketing Department under her leadership has established the Center for Marketing & Sales Innovation and built a behavioral lab administered through the center, implemented curriculum revisions including a new sales concentration and approvals of graduate and undergraduate degrees in supply chain management.

Four marketing professors were named Fulbright scholars and two participated in externships. The department also hosted the first intercollegiate sales competition and the inaugural Florida Supply Chain Summit and secured a $5 million gift to name the Monica Wooden Center for Supply Chain Management & Sustainability.

Davis is stepping down as chair, but she’ll continue to push the department to higher levels.

“Next for me,” she said, “is to pour more energy into the Monica Wooden Center for Supply Chain Management & Sustainability to ensure successful launches of the two new degrees, engage more supply chain management companies in the work of the center and strengthen our ties with supply chain management students and alumni.

“Plus, we will be working on external funding,” she said, “for new research collaborations in the area of sustainable urban freight transportation.”

Hughes is eager to get to Florida to start work and sample the culture of the university and Tampa.

“I have always loved to travel and experience new places and cultures,” Hughes said. “As a new empty nester (three grown children in college or beyond), I now have more time to pursue that passion, and am blessed that my girlfriend, Brenda, shares this interest. We have two dogs – a 16-year old Labradoodle named Toby and a 1-year old Bernedoodle named Admiral Jak – and they keep us busy as well.

“I also enjoy hiking, golf and tennis, among other things, as a participant and most sports as a spectator.  We both also like to cook and dine out and we are excited about sampling what will be many new restaurants for us in Tampa.”

Hughes takes over in August.