Miami’s new national rep: A cradle for CEOs

The most recent Money magazine lists the Butler County university among the top 10 in the nation for producing chief executive officers of Fortune 500 companies.

Miami earned the third spot nationally with four CEOs and was the only one of the 10 universities ranked to have two women alumni now holding such top corporate leadership jobs. The Miami-produced CEOs included in the report are: David C. Dvorak (Zimmer Biomet Holdings), Lynn J. Good (Duke Energy), Kimberly S. Lubel (CST Brands) and James T. Ryan (W.W. Grainger).

The Money magazine article states: “You might be surprised that just as many Fortune 500 CEOs went to this small Midwestern liberal arts school as such big-name schools as MIT, Yale, and Vanderbilt. But Miami U’s alumni and current students aren’t.

“They say the university offers a rigorous liberal arts curriculum that prepares its students for all kinds of challenges. Miami is also the only school in the top 10 with more than one female CEO to its credit.”

Miami University President David Hodge, who is retiring at the end of this month, said he and other Miami officials had no idea the national publication had included Miami in such a listing.

“We didn’t know anything about it, but obviously we’re delighted,” Hodge said. “We didn’t realize we were in those ranks but it’s pretty nice and it says a lot about Miami.”

The universities and colleges comprising the top 10 list in order of ranking are: Stanford University, Princeton University, Miami University, University of Wisconsin-Madison, University of Notre Dame, U.S. Military Academy at West Point, Texas A&M University, Pennsylvania State University, Cornell University and Harvard University.

Miami, which is Butler County’s largest employer, has long been among the nation’s top academic performers and enjoys many other favorable reputations.

Among those is also being known as “The Cradle of Coaches” for producing alumni who went on to football coaching greatness. Miami has been the training ground for 21 National Coach of the Year recipients at the professional and collegiate levels and counts among its alumni and former coaches Woody Hayes, Bo Schembechler, Paul Brown and Ara Parseghian.

Money magazine said Miami and the other schools on its list emphasize the importance of including liberal arts learning while developing America’s future business leaders.

“We whole-heartily believe that everyone should have a liberal arts foundation … with its training in breadth and versatility,” Hodge said.

“Many employers have commented to us on this and how quickly our graduates move up in their (company) hierarchies,” he said. “One of the reasons is we offer a huge number of student groups where students can learn leadership and collaborative skills.”