Alumni and Friends

Professorship in OHIO’s College of Business fosters research, professional development

In 2004, the late Frances G. Shoolroy established the Robert H. Freeman Professorship in Ohio University’s College of Business in honor of her husband, Robert H. Freeman, BA ’35, who died in 1969. The professorship is awarded to faculty who exhibit excellence in research and teaching. It currently supports five faculty members who hold the title for three consecutive academic years.

Heather Lawrence Benedict headshot

Heather Lawrence-Benedict. Photo By Ben Wirtz Siegel

Three associate professors in the College of Business hold the title of Freeman Professors, and two assistant professors hold the title of Freeman Fellows.

David Briggs, BSCE ’62, stepson to Robert H. Freeman, recalls when his mother, Shoolroy, came to him shortly after Freeman’s death with a wish to honor him through a gift to the University.

“My mother knew that a little bit of help could go a long way with this professorship,” said Briggs. “Robert loved the University, especially as an alumnus. He did a lot to help young people throughout his life, and the College of Business was the foundation of that success.”

One Freeman professorship recipient, Heather Lawrence-Benedict, associate professor of sports administration, teams with students to conduct research about athletes who participate in CrossFit games.

Gabriel Giordano headshot

Gabriel Giordano. Photo By Ben Wirtz Siegel

“I’m honored to have received the Freeman Professorship,” said Lawrence-Benedict. “I love working at OHIO, and I love working in the research lab. The Freeman is a recognition of that, and it motivates me every day.”

Another recipient, Associate Professor and Chair of the Analytics and Information Systems Department Gabriel Giordano, researches how emerging technology affects communication in the workplace. The Freeman Professorship is a motivator to go beyond the roles as a professor, Giordano said.

“I’m motivated to continue doing cutting-edge research to make a difference in the business world and bring the latest knowledge back to the University,” he said. “This type of service is key for me as a professor. I want to be a resource for both my students and the University.”

Colin Gabler headshot

Colin Gabler. Photo courtesy of University Communication and Marketing

Colin Gabler, assistant professor of marketing, is a Freeman Fellow and the director of the Global Consulting Program (GCP) in the College of Business. Gabler uses the Freeman Fellow funding to travel with the GCP and to research sustainability in marketing.

“The fellowship gives me a platform to expand on my resources,” said Gabler. “It allows me to go beyond what I am capable of doing alone and expands my resources to develop something I’m passionate about and to encourage growth in the University.”

May 3, 2018
Andrea Wurm, BSJ ’18