David Ganz refers to the University of Missouri–St. Louis as his home away from home. So, after more than 45 years at the university, one more item to keep him coming back is okay with him.
Ganz, assistant professor emeritus of accounting and associate dean emeritus of the College of Business Administration, was recently named chair of the Jubilee Organizing Committee. The committee is the major campus organization charged with creating and promoting UMSL’s 50th anniversary celebration in 2013.
Ganz, who came to UMSL in 1966 to teach accounting courses, brings a wealth of knowledge and a sought-after perspective for the job.
“I am honored to be part of the planning for this anniversary,” Ganz said. “Our story needs to be told. I hope to use the anniversary to increase our visibility in the region and talk about all the good things we are doing here.”
Ganz has worn multiple hats for the College of Business Administration and the university – helping to build the accounting program and the college into the nationally accredited and recognized institutions they are today.
Often referred to as “Mr. UMSL” by his colleagues, Ganz was inducted into COBA’s Accounting Hall of Fame in 2010. In 2011 the college honored him again with a $1 million initiative for a classroom in his name in the proposed new COBA building. The initiative was kicked off with an anonymous gift of $100,000 and a party attended by several hundred alumni and friends.
That loyal following of alumni helped write a new job description for him in 2002 when he planned his “first” retirement. Ganz was asked to take on the perfectly suited role of alumni coordinator for the college. He said yes.
“One of the most rewarding things about teaching are the relationships you develop with your students,” he said. “When I first started, I had classes with several hundred students. There are times when someone comes up to me and says, ‘You probably don’t remember me, but you helped make a difference in my life.’ That’s a great feeling.”
In 2007, he expected to retire for good but was again asked to stay on working one-quarter time. He spends most afternoons in his office keeping tabs on decades of alumni and retiree correspondence.
“This campus has done so much in the nearly 50 years it’s been in existence,” Ganz said. “Our alumni are out there in great numbers building St. Louis. I hope to use our anniversary as a way to boast about our strengths.”