CalBusiness


Summer 2007

Feature Story

Your Haas Network

Dave Wilson, MBA 65
President and CEO, Graduate
Management Admission Council McLean, Virginia

 

Three years ago, Dave Wilson, MBA 65, biked 27 miles with cycling legend Lance Armstrong in the Tour of Hope event to raise money for cancer research.

 

"That experience really motivated me to create Team MBA with the mission of mobilizing the MBA community to give back," said Wilson, president and CEO of the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC). His brainchild, Team MBA, is an international initiative that has raised over $240,000 for charitable organizations including the Red Cross and Lance Armstrong Foundation.

 

Its credo, "Making a Difference One Degree at a Time," is a philosophy Wilson has applied throughout his career as a professor, public accountant, and now president and CEO of GMAC, which administers the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT), a requirement for application to US business schools.

 

"What I love about this job is that it can change people's lives for the better," he said. "An MBA is a unique degree that opens doors people didn't know were there or, if they did know that the door existed, they assumed it was closed to them."

 

The first door Wilson's MBA opened was an accounting job where he worked before accepting a teaching position at Queen's University in Kingston, Canada. In the classroom, Wilson, who holds a Ph.D. from the University of Illinois, developed a passion for helping others realize their potential and established a distinguished career in the academy. Wilson taught at the University of Illinois, Harvard Business School, and at the University of Texas at Austin.

 

Seeking a new challenge, Wilson returned to public accounting as a line auditor for Ernst & Young, where he was quickly made partner and tapped to manage the firm's educational practice. He spent ten years developing the firm's educational services before retiring in 1994. Four months after retiring, another door opened and it lead to GMAC.

 

At GMAC, Wilson grew the Council from a six-employee organization with $17 million in revenues and a fund balance of $12 million to a 100-person company with revenues of $70 million and a fund balance exceeding $80 million. Guided by his credo, Wilson is now working to increase the number of international testing locations and raise awareness about the benefits of an MBA education.

 

Dave Wilson, MBA 65

Dave Wilson, MBA 65
President and CEO, Graduate
Management Admission Council McLean, Virginia