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Morris Stocks Named First Holder of Jones Chair

Morris Stocks, former UM provost and accountancy dean, has been named the inaugural holder of the Don Jones Chair of Accountancy. Photo by Bill Dabney/UM Foundation

The University of Mississippi’s Patterson School of Accountancy has named Morris H. Stocks as the inaugural holder of the Don Jones Chair of Accountancy.

Stocks, who returned to the school’s faculty in January 2017, had served in high-level administrative roles at the university for the past 15 years. As provost, executive vice chancellor and interim chancellor, Stocks provided vision and leadership related to many academic honors and advancements at the university.
“I am extremely humbled to be named the first recipient of the Don Jones Chair of Accountancy and especially heartened by the designation because I knew Don personally and considered him a great friend and colleague,” Stocks said. “This chair is a tribute to his outstanding career and significant contributions to the profession of accounting. I’m greatly honored to hold a position that represents his legacy.”
Under Stocks’ leadership as UM’s chief academic officer, overall student enrollment grew by more than 40 percent and minority student enrollment soared by more than 60 percent. Student success measures also improved, with freshman retention and six-year graduation rates each increasing by roughly 7 percent.
Besides his many accomplishments as a higher education administrator, Stocks is – first and foremost – a talented teacher, having won the coveted Elsie M. Hood Outstanding Teacher Award in 1998 as a faculty member of the Patterson School of Accountancy.
“Morris Stocks has enjoyed an exceptional career at Ole Miss and we are fortunate to have him on our faculty,” Dean Mark Wilder said. “Morris is an outstanding teacher and mentor and he has provided great leadership for the university and Patterson School.
“His significant academic accomplishments and achievements during his tenure at Ole Miss stand as an example to which we should all aspire.
“We are extremely grateful for the generosity of the Brockman Foundation and for honoring Don in a way that will help Ole Miss faculty and students. Don enjoyed a wonderful career and was one of our greatest supporters. We are honored to have him as an alumnus and to have the Don Jones name forever associated with the Patterson School.”
Before assuming responsibilities as provost, Stocks served UM as senior vice chancellor for planning and operations and as dean of the Patterson School of Accountancy. Under his leadership, the school was ranked for the first time as one of the country’s top 25 accounting programs by the journal Public Accounting Report, a status it has retained since.
The school’s undergraduate, master’s and doctoral programs are No. 8 in this year’s rankings.
Stocks received an undergraduate degree in accounting from Trevecca Nazarene University, a master’s degree from Middle Tennessee State University and a doctorate from the University of South Carolina. He is a certified public accountant in Mississippi. He and his wife, Cindy, have four adult children.
In 2016, the Brockman Foundation, a charitable trust for which the late Don Jones served as financial adviser for over 20 years, established the chair in his name with a $2 million gift to UM. The endowment supports salary supplements, research and creative activity in an effort to attract and retain outstanding faculty.
“Through Don’s work, finding investment opportunities and following through with them, the Brockman Foundation was able to build to the extent to where it can now make some substantial gifts,” said Evatt Tamine, the foundation’s director. “We are able to do the work we do, to a large extent, because of the work Don did over the years. So it seemed appropriate to do something that honored him.”
The chair was announced less than two months before Jones died suddenly at his Oxford home.
Melissa Jones, a 1968 graduate of the School of Business Administration, said her husband told her that he hoped the gift would keep the Patterson School at the forefront of nationally renowned accountancy schools and give students the opportunity to excel.
“This was a very humbling experience and both of us were very grateful for the recognition,” she said. “Don felt strongly about the School of Accountancy and would tell anyone who would listen how important it was to him.
“Now, to have Morris named as chair would mean so much to Don, who greatly admired Morris and his work on behalf of Ole Miss and especially on behalf of the School of Accountancy.”
At Ole Miss, Jones was active in many aspects of campus life. After graduating cum laude in 1966 with a bachelor’s degree in accountancy and in 1967 with a master’s degree in accountancy, Jones joined Arthur Andersen & Co. in Houston, Texas, as an auditor. He also served a two-year stint in the U.S. Army.
Jones joined Brown & Root Inc. in Houston from 1976 to 1981, then moved to Universal Computer Systems Inc. in Houston, where he was the chief financial officer until 1995. He then became chief executive officer of Pilot Management Ltd. in Bermuda, serving there until 2008.
The Donald D. Jones Chair of Accountancy Endowment is open to gifts from individuals and organizations. To contribute, send checks with the endowment name noted in the memo line to the University of Mississippi Foundation, 406 University Ave., University, MS 38655; or visit https://www.umfoundation.com/makeagift.
For more information on ways to support the Patterson School of Accountancy, contact Brooke Barnes, director of development, at brooke@olemiss.edu or 662-915-1993.


By Bill Dabney
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