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Best Profs: Derek Rucker

Derek Rucker (center) of Kellogg is among the 40 best business school profs under 40.

Derek Rucker (center) of Kellogg is among the 40 best business school profs under 40.

Derek Rucker

Associate Professor of Marketing

Director, Center for Global Marketing Practices

Age: 33

Institution: Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management

Hometown: Santa Cruz, CA

Marital Status:  Married

Children:  2 – Charlotte, 3; Connor, 2

Education: Ohio State University, PhD, Psychology

Ohio State University, MA, Psychology

University of California, Santa Cruz, BA, Psychology

Courses:  Advertising Strategy, Sports Marketing and Management

At Kellogg since: 2005

Fun Fact #1: “I am a diehard college football fan. If I couldn’t have been in marketing, I would have loved to be a college football coach. I currently manage a successful fantasy football team.”

Fun Fact #2: “My mom said I would make for a good professor at three years old when I took the time to instruct a little girl on the playground one day. I followed her advice.”

Experiential learning is what makes the difference for this 33-year-old Kellogg professor. Derek Rucker brings advertising to life with hands-on curricula that evoke student participation and enthusiasm.

The professor, who is also director of Kellogg’s Center for Global Marketing Practices, goes the distance for case development, once eating a 48 ounce steak just so he could talk about the advertising implications with his students. He also co-leads the Kellogg School Super Bowl Advertising Review, one of Kellogg’s most popular events where students critique Super Bowl spots real time and evaluate them based on academic criteria.

When he’s not chowing down 48 ounce steaks or watching the Super Bowl, Professor Rucker seeks to understand the motives that drive consumer consumption. He has authored more than 40 publications and book chapters primarily focusing on the study of attitudes, persuasion, and consumer behavior.

(See “Derek Rucker” Bringing Courses to Life“)

Students Say:

Derek Rucker is one of the few professors who can seamlessly blend academic subjects with very tangible examples.  He makes class entertaining and constantly solicits feedback from students on which cases to keep and which to revise so the material is as fresh and relevant as possible for each class.

On top of his performance in the classroom, Professor Rucker is genuinely excited to help his students.  He regularly advises individual students on career decisions, offers his time to moderate conference panels, schedules optional class sessions to cover topics not in the curriculum but of interest to students, and provides a blog to keep his students past and present up to speed on trends.  I have had the pleasure of working with Professor Rucker in many of these capacities and am not able think of a better example of the scholar-teacher-mentor model of education. — Leslie Wade, Kellogg MBA Class of 2011

Derek Rucker is among The World’s 40 Best B-School Profs Under the Age of 40