Where MBAs Write ‘Love Letters’ To Their Profs

On accounting professor Mary Margaret Frank: “She is one of life’s great teachers – both academically and in the larger life sense of the term. Mary Margaret has the ability to teach students to not just consider the facts in front of them, but also challenges them to seek the bigger picture and vision for what their work means for society.”

August 14, 2014

Dear Darden Community,

It is with great honor that I nominate Mary Margaret Frank as the Faculty Recipient of the 2015 Frederick S. Morton Leadership Award.

Mary Margaret Frank is a true inspiration. To many people, she’s the buzzing, energetic woman you see zipping through the halls of Darden, convincing everyone that tax policy is the coolest thing since, well ever. She is one of life’s great teachers – both academically and in the larger life sense of the term. Mary Margaret has the ability to teach students to not just consider the facts in front of them, but also challenges them to seek the bigger picture and vision for what their work means for society.

To me, Mary Margaret is that and more. I sought out the Darden experience, because I wanted a business school that promoted a sense of community, ingenuity, and creative problem solving. I conceived an idea to leverage the incredible talent of individuals from UVA’s Darden, Law, and Batten schools by bringing them together to develop a network and toolset that prepares all of us for tackling the 21st century’s greatest challenges through cross-sector approaches.

Mary Margaret was already the embodiment of this idea, and was one of the key people that helped turn this idea in reality. Despite the many activities already demanding her time, Mary Margaret wholeheartedly threw herself into this idea, convincing others of its importance, bringing together key stakeholders, developing effective student engagement, and so much more. All of this was done through her own good will. She, the Institute for Business in Society, and so many others helped turn a concept into a reality through the Tri-Sector Leadership Fellows program.

Darden’s mission is to improve the world by developing and inspiring responsible leaders and by advancing knowledge. This can’t be done without transformational leaders whose charisma and enthusiasm for life transform the way we think about our societal role, relationships, and missions. To those future classes of Darden, I encourage you to stop, reflect, and to look to the now. We spend so much time focusing on being future leaders or memorializing the leaders of the past. But, look around you. You’ll see an array of transformational leaders who create transformational experiences and insights that will form the bedrock for everything you do in the future. To me, Mary Margaret is one such leader and is the embodiment of all that Darden seeks to achieve.

To Mary Margaret, I count it a true blessing that I was able to learn and work with you at Darden, and I am so thankful for the many future Darden classes that will have this honor.

Darden MBA Annie Medaglia

All the best,
Annie Medaglia, Darden 2015