Accounting is known as the language of business. Individuals and businesses rely upon accountants to collect, classify, and determine financial stability. The Else School of Management offers a B.B.A. in accounting and also a master of accountancy (M.Acc.). At Millsaps College, professors create a learning environment that borrows situations from the real world, so you can practice making good decisions. Our professors are leaders in their academic field, outstanding teachers, and mentors. You will find numerous opportunities for real world experience thanks to internships, and graduates secure jobs with leading accounting firms and other businesses.

  • Jesse D. Beeler—Millsaps College

    Jesse D. Beeler

    Professor of Accounting, Hyman F. McCarty Jr. Chair of Business Administrations

    Email

    Bio

    B.S., M.B.A., Southwest Missouri State University; Ph.D., University of Texas-Arlington

    "During my teaching career my primary goal has been to help young people develop their ability to think creatively and analytically and develop morally and intellectually. I strive to not only be a teacher but a mentor, role model, and friend to my students. For example, I supervised many independent studies and internships. Several of the directed studies have resulted in research that has been presented at professional meetings and/or published in professional journals. I also strive to involve students and business leaders in an interactive learning environment by bringing real world experiences into the classroom. For instance, I regularly schedule partners from accounting firms in Jackson to present cases drawn from their current practice to my Advanced Financial Accounting Theory and Problems class.

    "I have been very active in the Accounting Residency Program helping place our students in positions that allow them to gain professional work experience before graduation. These activities are critical for expanding partnerships between the College and the regional and national business community. We have had an almost 100 percent placement rate for students who graduate from our M.Acc. Program during the past 20 years.

    "Globalization of business requires accounting educators to take on the challenge of preparing our students to be much more than merely technically competent accountants. We as educators we must foster and nurture an entrepreneurial spirit in our students and motivate them to strive to achieve life goals that go beyond ordinary endeavors. By offering an academically challenging, innovative curriculum we must provide students a strong foundation in fundamental business skills as well as general abilities such as critical thinking, communication, quantitative thinking, historical consciousness and multicultural awareness. Of growing importance is the need to create a focus on global awareness and cultural sensitivity, we must educate our students to the reality that globalization of business is a fact of life and that its' increasing importance in business and in society will impact them personally. Business educators must convey these lessons with a sense of urgency. The future is now and we must broaden accounting education so that our graduates can help lead the economy of this country as we compete beyond our local, state, and national borders. To accomplish these objectives we as educators must take a personal interest in out students' entire professional life. We must be available to serve as role models, mentors, and advocates for our students. We must create programs and connections that will place our students into the broader world. If you strive to create leaders for the future of accounting and business you can no longer simply stay in the classroom and teach your students the technical elements of accounting. We must commit to travel with students for extended periods to introduce them to the broader world, local, regional, national and beyond to the international business community."

  • Bill M. Brister—Millsaps College

    Bill M. Brister

    Assistant Professor of Finance

    Email

    Bio

    B.S., M.B.A., University of Southern Mississippi; Ph.D., University of Arkansas

    "Hello. I’m Bill Brister and I teach finance here at Millsaps. Right after I received my M.B.A. at USM, the Dean there asked if I would teach a class in Business Statistics. Having no other job at the time, I agreed. From the first class I taught I knew that I had found by vocational passion. I continued on with my education and earned a Ph.D. and started teaching at Millsaps in 1989. I love the classroom and teaching, particularly here at Millsaps.

    "In my finance classes we talk about a host of interesting topics such as: MONEY, personal investment, interest rates, the stock market, the bond market, and dividend policy. OK, OK, maybe most of these topics do not sound very interesting, but MONEY is interesting.

    "I also do a good bit of consulting in the area of litigation support. Like the classroom, I like testifying in court as an expert witness. Sometimes it is nerve-racking, and I must be on my toes at all times, but the excitement of the competitive nature of the courtroom is very exciting."

  • Kimberly G. Burke—Millsaps College

    Kimberly G. Burke

    Dean of the Else School of Management, Professor of Accounting

    Email

    Bio

    B.B.A., M.S., Texas Tech University; Ph.D., Oklahoma University

    Students often approach accounting with the misguided ideas that 1) the practice of accounting is just a good way to get a job, and 2) in accounting there is always a single best answer for any problem. Instead I get to introduce students to a profession dedicated to serving the public interest above its own and a complex, intricate system that challenges them to solve problems, communicate complicated ideas and behave ethically in situations where the ‘right thing to do’ may be hard to identify.

    Anyone who has ever completed Intermediate Accounting can tell you that learning the rules of accounting is serious work. But, being a skilled technician is not the end goal – I want students to make learned and thoughtful contributions to the business and nonprofit communities they serve. To do so, they must certainly understand the rules, but they also need to comprehend the politics involved in making accounting or auditing policy, analyze the strengths and weaknesses of current accounting guidance and practice the interpersonal skills required of a successful accountant. So, in my classes, it’s not uncommon for students to role-play the needs of various financial statement users as difficult information is communicated. They play games like Monopoly or Bingo to demonstrate the ambiguities of accounting guidance. Sometimes they are asked to navigate their way through a real example of fraud or accounting failure to obtain a better outcome. These activities take students beyond ‘debit-left, credit-right’ and help them see the discipline as something more than a way to a steady job and develop a keen sense of commitment to using accounting to serve the public interest.

    Dr. Burke is an active scholar co-authoring five continuing education courses offered by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and numerous articles published in prestigious academic journals. For her dedication to teaching, Dr. Burke has been recognized as the Mississippi Professor of the Year by CASE and the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, the Distinguished Professor from Millsaps College, and Outstanding Educator by the Mississippi Society of CPAs.

  • David Culpepper

    David H. Culpepper

    Professor of Accounting

    Email

    Bio

    B.S., Belhaven College; B.S., M.B.A., Millsaps College; Ph.D., University of Alabama

    Dr. David Culpepper holds B.S. degrees in chemistry and accounting, an M.B.A., and a Ph.D. in accounting, with minor in statistics, from the University of Alabama. He has been employed by Ernst & Young as well as the U.S. Treasury Department. During the last 25 years, he has served numerous clients in various financial, valuation, and capital deployment related engagements. A Certified Valuation Analyst (CVA) since 1995, Culpepper has been involved in private equity evaluation, financial damages and other litigation support, and the valuation of closely-held businesses for the purposes of mergers and acquisitions, estate planning, etc. He has been qualified as an expert witness to testify on business damages in both the Southern District Federal Court and the Northern District Federal Court. He has also conducted evaluations resulting in fairness opinions for the Mississippi Attorney General's office for various hospital and healthcare entity acquisitions.

    Culpepper has coordinated and participated in numerous private equity investments by various investor groups. These investments have ranged from early stage seed capital to later stage mezzanine financing rounds, and include a variety of industry sectors: medical devices, wireless technology, network routing technology, oil and gas exploration, commercial/residential real estate development, renewable energy technology, natural gas pipeline technology, among others. He also serves as managing partner of a hotel development/management firm that has acquired or developed ten hotels, and a construction firm that specializes in hotel construction.

    Culpepper is a professor of accounting and eEntrepreneurship for the Else School of Management at Millsaps College, and serves as chair of ELSEWorks, the College's entrepreneurial initiative, as well as on the Board of Midtown Partners, Inc. He has also held the Kelly Gene Cook Chair of Business Administration, and has taught various courses in accounting, tax, finance, and entrepreneurship at both the undergraduate and graduate level. He has published numerous articles in both academic and professional journals including the Journal of Applied Business Research, CPA Journal, Journal of European Business, Journal of International Taxation, Journal of Accounting and Finance Research, Journal of Accountancy, Journal of Accounting Theory and Practice, Journal of State Taxation, and the Mississippi Business Journal.

  • Jane Collins Harkins

    Jane Collins Harkins

    Instructor of Accounting

    Email

    Bio

    B.B.A., Millsaps College; J.D., University of Mississippi; L.L.M. Estate Planning, University of Miami

    "I teach accounting and tax classes for the Else School of Management. The nature of my teaching material is technical and detail oriented but it is my hope that I also provide my students with practical experience and current relativeness for a fuller classroom experience. I see a range of students from sophomores to master's-level students and see many of the same students as they progress through their accounting coursework. I enjoy watching my students develop into accounting professionals ready to enter the workplace."

  • Guy Matthew McClain

    Guy Matthew McClain

    Assistant Professor of Accounting

    Email

    Bio

    B.S., Louisiana Tech University; M.Acc., University of Mississippi; Ph.D., University of Arkansas

    Guy McClain is an assistant professor in the Else School of Management. He teaches courses in accounting, primarily focusing on auditing and financial statement analysis. He also teaches the accounting senior seminar which focuses on the globalization of accounting standards. He is also an affiliated visiting professor with the IESEG School of Management in France with campuses in Lille and Paris. He has also taught during the summer term with the East China Normal University in Shanghai, China. Professor McClain adds, “I love to travel and there is such a need for accounting professionals around the world that I have done some type of accounting work on every continent but Africa and Antarctica. Africa is on the horizon, but Antarctica might be a bit of a stretch! I love sharing my experiences with students and, hopefully, opening their eyes to the opportunities that are available.”

  • Walter P. Neely

    Walter P. Neely

    Professor of Finance

    Email

    Bio

    B.S., M.B.A., Mississippi State University; Ph.D., University of Georgia

    Walter Neely is a Chartered Financial Analyst. His teaching interests include corporate finance, portfolio management, international finance, and the Wilson Fund. His research interests include portfolio management, corporate finance, and valuation of closely held firms. He has selected publications in the Journal of Applied Business Research, Financial Review, International Journal of Finance, and Financial Management.