Raffini Family Endowed Professorship at the McDonough School of Business
When James Raffini graduated from the McDonough School of Business in 2014, his parents realized that along the way, they had also formed a connection to Georgetown. They had seen how James gained well more than technical skills. Through discussions with leading professors and driven classmates, he had acquired “those intangibles that enable you to achieve impact and influence as you move through your career.”
“I’ve been at Georgetown for 20 years because I am loyal to our mission to expand imaginations and solve urgent social problems. The students here want to make the world a better place. With this professorship, I’m able to explore some of the most important questions of our time.”
“We wanted to continue to support Georgetown’s academics and priorities,”explains George Raffini. “When we started talking with the dean, we focused on the qualities of professors. They are, after all, the straw that stirs the drink.”
After sitting in on classroom discussions and lectures, Patricia and George Raffini decided to establish a professorship in the business school. The Raffinis were delighted with the appointment of Catherine Tinsley, Ph.D., as the inaugural Raffini Professor last year because they admired her “laser-focus on the importance of leadership and the characteristics that come with it. Being a leader is more than analyzing spreadsheets and short-term accountability.”
Indeed Professor Tinsley is an expert on leadership, risk, and gender intelligence. Her recent project focused on Corporate Social Responsibility at Kate Spade & Company, with her research suggesting that improving the well-being of marginalized women in conflict-affected communities can be commercially viable.
She was especially pleased to see these marginalized women gaining confidence as they learned about the global fashion industry. “I’ve found that confident people are more likely to solve problems, be innovative, and work independently.”
Tinsley also leads and teaches for the Executive Master’s in Leadership at Georgetown McDonough. The mission of that program is to produce principled leaders who understand how to navigate a competitive, global business environment.
“I’ve been at Georgetown for 20 years because I am loyal to our mission to expand imaginations and solve urgent social problems,”shares Tinsley. “The students here want to make the world a better place. With this professorship, I’m able to explore some of the most important questions of our time: In an age of partisan conflict, how can we increase people’s receptivity to opposing points of view? As globalization increases, how do we intelligently manage our diverse human capital? What social and psychological forces subconsciously influence how we approach risk?”
James Raffini agrees. “My professors helped me understand important priorities and principles,” he shares. “As I move through my career to leadership roles, my Hoya network helps me remember and reinforce these lessons.”