April 10, 2015,
Most MBA programs are run by men, and the reason goes back to the 1980s
Alison Davis-Blake, dean of the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business, is used to being lonely.
“I have been the first at everything I’ve done in academic leadership,” says Davis-Blake. She adds that she was the first woman to be the chair of her department at the University of Texas at Austin’s McCombs School of Business, the first female senior associate dean at McCombs, the first female dean of the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota, and now the first woman to run Ross. Bloomberg Business asked Davis-Blake why she’s had to be first so many times, and what it’s like to be one of the only women camping out in a business school’s corner office. The interview has been condensed and edited for clarity.
Why are you one of only 10 female deans at the top 60 business schools?