Dr. Kirk Wessel - Dean of the School of Business

Posted by Paula Paine on May 23, 2011 in Arizona, Faculty/Staff, "Other News", "School of Business" Ottawa University is pleased to announce that Dr. Kirk D. Wessel has accepted the position of Dean of its School of Business. Wessel brings to Ottawa more than 30 years of experience as an academic administrator, senior corporate executive, university professor, and senior naval officer, as well as extensive consulting experience in human resources, operations and board leadership, including non-profit organizations. He has more than 13 years of experience in higher education teaching, leadership and community relations, and an additional 23 years of professional experience in business and the military. Wessel came to Ottawa University from Westminster College in Salt Lake City, Utah, where he served as an undergraduate and graduate professor, as well as management chair and MBA chair in the Gore School of Business. President Kevin Eichner is eager to utilize Wessel’s talents within the School of Business. “We are very pleased that Dr. Wessel has emerged as our top candidate. His background, philosophy, studentcentered focus, and entrepreneurial spirit are going to serve us well into the future, as they already have in his role as interim dean. I am personally delighted that he is going to lead our largest school at the beginning of a very bright future for our institution.” Wessel received his bachelor’s degree in engineering from the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, and earned a Master of Business Administration degree and a PhD in Business Administration (Business Policy & Strategy) from the University of Utah. His dissertation research was in new product development and performance, and he has studied at the U.S. Navy Aviation School in Pensacola, Florida. He has also received numerous certifications in such fields as executive coaching, employee relations law, interaction management, high performance management, and as a Myers-Briggs Type Indicator instructor. Wessel has served as a vice president for operations and vice president for human resources with Associated Food Stores, human resources manager for PEPSICO, and as a captain Navy pilot in the U.S. Navy Reserve, responsible for division activities, personnel, squadron command, and liaison relations to the State of Utah. During his academic and business career, Wessel owned a highly successful corporate consulting firm for more than 16 years, providing guidance in executive coaching, leadership development, strategic planning, human resource effectiveness, and disruptive change management. While serving as squadron commander in Utah, Dr. Wessel was awarded the Meritorious Service Medal for his leadership. “Ottawa University is truly blessed to have Dr. Wessel join our leadership team. He is one of those exceptional professionals who can gracefully combine intellect, creativity, sensitivity, and drive. I expect great things from his leadership,” said University Provost Dr. Terry Haines.