The director of the University of Memphis School of Accountancy, Callahan is the first African American and first female to hold the top job at the College of Business.
She will assume the post on or before July 1, 2014, replacing Charles Moyer, UofL’s business dean since 2005. Moyer will be a dean emeritus and finance professor at the school after taking a one-year sabbatical.
Callahan is the KPMG distinguished professor of accounting at Memphis and also has worked at the universities of Massachusetts, Notre Dame and Arkansas. She was an accountant for the jet engine division of Pratt & Whitney, a U.S.-based aerospace manufacturer with global operations.
In 2008, she was appointed to a Financial Accounting Standards Board advisory panel that helps the SEC set standards for financial reports by non-governmental organizations.
A strong advocate for “real world” education, Callahan retooled the accounting program at Memphis to reflect community needs and required graduate students to earn or be close to earning a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) credential before leaving the school.
“I’m honored to join UofL and I look forward to working closely with each person connected with its College of Business,” she said. “It’s my hope we can all build on the college’s high standards of student achievement, solid business partnerships and strong commitment to innovation.”
Callahan has a Doctor of Philosophy degree in business administration from Michigan State University, a master’s degree in accountancy from Bowling Green State University and a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Ohio Northern University.
“Dr. Callahan has done a great job of bringing people together to share the same vision, whether they work in higher education, the community or the business world,” said UofL President James Ramsey. “She’s a natural choice to lead our College of Business as we launch our 21st Century Initiative, UofL’s plan to advance to the next level of excellence.”