Rozelle honored for outstanding service
Feb. 21, 2007
KALAMAZOO--David L. Rozelle, associate professor of accountancy at Western Michigan University, is the winner, of WMU's 2007 Distinguished Service Award.
Rozelle, who has a history of campus service, an outstanding reputation as a mentor to accounting professionals and a track record as an advocate for organ donation, will receive the award during WMU's Academic Convocation ceremonies at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 28, in the Dalton Center Recital Hall.
The Distinguished Service Award recognizes exceptional service to WMU through innovative and effective programs, service in areas and organizations that contribute to the growth and stature of the University, or service that extends the impact and presence of the University into larger communities. Rozelle will receive a plaque, an honorarium and a subsequent adjustment to his pay.
David L. Rozelle, a faculty member for nearly 37 years, is a past recipient of the WMU Alumni Association's Teaching Excellence Award, and in 2004, he was named the Michigan Association of CPAs Educator of the Year. But his work in the classroom, teaching an estimated 10,000 students over the years, was only one facet of the qualities outlined in letters of support for his nomination that came from accounting professionals, colleagues and current and former students.
Many lauded Rozelle for his quarter century of work as advisor to WMU's award-winning chapter of the accounting honorary Beta Alpha Psi. Others singled out his years of service to the University on various advisory boards, curriculum review panels and other campus committees.
Still others noted his service in the broader community and his adoption of organ donation through Michigan Gift of Life as a personal cause, after his own experience as the recipient of a heart transplant.
A West Michigan managing partner for a major accounting firm recounted a 20-year acquaintance with Rozelle that began as a student/mentor relationship and persisted through the student's rise in the profession and his role as a recruiter of new employees.
"There are very few people I have met in my life that have positively impacted so many lives as Dave Rozelle," he wrote. "Even today, as I encounter the challenges of being a partner in the profession of public accounting, I reach out to Dave for his wisdom, counsel and input."
A colleague wrote: "On every campus, there is a very small cadre of faculty members who over the years and decades measurably alter the landscape for the better. They lead colleagues and serve as role models for what the academy should be. At Western, no one better fits this description than David L. Rozelle."
Commenting on Rozelle's personal response to a serious health problem, that same colleague wrote: "No one who observed him laboriously making his way down the hall to teach a section of introductory accounting could fail to notice and be inspired...He provided a profile in courage and commitment that will stay with me for the rest of my career and life..."
Later, after heart transplant surgery, Rozelle regained his health, and he agreed to take on the challenging role of department chair. But he did so conditionally, according to another supporter.
"David accepted the position of chair of the accountancy department on a one-year basis, provided he was allowed to retain a full teaching load during fall, winter, spring and summer sessions," wrote the colleague. "For the year, he had outstanding student evaluations along with an outstanding evaluation as department chair."
A current student summed up the reason for Rozelle's outstanding teaching evaluations.
"Mr. Rozelle is the reason why I chose accounting as my profession," she wrote. "I came into this school with little knowledge on what I intended as a career for myself. He was the one who recognized potential in me and immediately told me that he knew I was capable of a bright future in accounting."
Noting that Rozelle's students are well schooled and routinely go on to achieve professional success, a member of the International Accounting Standards Board wrote from London that Rozelle's work over the years has helped build WMU's reputation in the industry.
"The accounting profession has a great deal of respect for Western graduates, and to a large extent, the efforts of Dave over the past many years have created the image that brings about that respect."
Rozelle earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Toledo in 1967, a master's degree in history from Michigan State University in 1969 and a master's in accounting from WMU in 1974. He is a Certified Public Accountant and a Certified Management Accountant.
Media contact: Cheryl Roland, (269) 387-8400, firstname.lastname@example.org