New Faculty Hired at Isenberg School of Management

AMHERST, Mass. - The Isenberg School of Management at the University of Massachusetts has appointed four new faculty members this fall. In welcoming the new faculty members, Dean Thomas O’Brien said the school has undergone a number of significant changes this year. "The School of Management has embarked upon a new era. It has a new name - the Isenberg School, and it will open a new high-technology classroom wing in 2002. Representing strategic disciplines, our new faculty members - three of them women - will play major roles in this exciting future."

Sara Ann McComb has joined the department of finance and operations management as an assistant professor. McComb brings a combination of academic and private sector management experience to the University. Her research interest lies in cross-functional teams, such as those she participated in while at General Motors from 1984-95. McComb held several positions at General Motors: production supervisor, production engineer, senior buyer, and supplier development engineer.

McComb joins UMass from Purdue University, where she was an instructor and research assistant from 1995-98. She earned her doctorate from Purdue in 1998, a master of science in engineering degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1993, and a bachelor of science degree in industrial engineering from the GMI Engineering & Management Institute in 1989. McComb has been a licensed professional engineer in Michigan since 1995.

Sanjay K. Nawalkha has also joined the department of finance and operations management as an associate professor. Nawalkha studies asset pricing, fixed income derivatives, and interest-rate risk management. He has published widely in financial journals and is co-author of a monograph published by the Research Foundation of the Chartered Financial Analysts. Nawalkha has consulted with national and international banks on interest-rate risk management and related fixed-income topics.

Nawalkha joins the University from Indiana University, where he was a visiting associate professor of finance from 1997-98. He was a tenured associate professor of finance at the University of Baltimore from 1996-97, and was assistant professor there from 1990-96. Nawalkha earned a doctorate and master of business administration degrees in finance from UMass in 1990 and 1987 respectively, and a bachelor of science degree in mathematics from the University of Bombay, India, in 1984.

Vanitha Swaminathan has joined the marketing department as an assistant professor. She is teaching product strategy at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. Swaminathan’s areas of research are brand management, database marketing, and new product development. She has published in the Journal of Marketing Research, Advances in Consumer Research, and in the proceedings of the American Marketing Association, Academy of Management, and Relationship Marketing conferences. Swaminathan has received an award from Procter & Gamble’s Innovation Research Fund for her dissertation work on brand extensions.

Swaminathan earned her doctorate in business administration at the University of Georgia in 1998. She holds a postgraduate diploma in management from the Xavier Labour Relations Institute, Jamshedpur, India, 1990, and a bachelor of arts degree in economics from the University of Madras, India, 1988. Swaminathan worked as a marketing executive at Inchcape, Middle East, from 1992-94, at Unilever, India, from 1990-92, and at Citibank, India, in 1989.

Susan L. Porter has joined the department of accounting and information systems as an assistant professor. Her research examines the impact of regulation on economic decisions. Porter studies the impact of state and federal taxes and accounting and financial reporting regulations on decisions made by corporate managers. She has published in the Journal of the American Taxation Association and Contemporary Accounting Research. Porter is a licensed certified public accountant in Massachusetts.

Porter joined the University from the University of Texas at Austin where she was an assistant professor from 1993-98. She was a visiting assistant professor at the University of Michigan in 1995 and an instructor at the University of Washington from 1987-93. Porter earned her doctorate in business administration from the Universityof Washington in 1994, and a bachelor of science in business/accounting from Babson College in 1982. Prior to studying at the University of Washington, she worked for Arthur Andersen in Boston for four years and the Amicon Division of W.R. Grace for one year.