Wednesday, June 15, 2022

“Henry’s legacy and mine are intertwined.

In 1988-89, I was invited to spend a year as a visiting faculty member at Duke University, and they offered me a permanent position as a chaired professor. That’s when Dean George Daly went to Henry and said, “We need to create a chair and try to get Dan to come back.” That’s how I became the first Henry B. Tippie Chair and when I started getting to know Henry personally.

I learned that we both grew up in relatively poor farm families in Iowa. He grew vegetables that he sold to neighbors, and I raised hogs for my 4-H projects, which had us both tracking expenses and profits as kids and foreshadowed our accounting careers.

We also both had Professor Gil Maynard for intermediate accounting when we were students at Iowa—Henry in the 1940s, and me in 1960s. We exchanged stories about how tough Professor Maynard’s tests were and agreed that we learned a great deal.

I remember talking to Henry on several occasions about the multiplier effect of good faculty. Investment in outstanding faculty like Professor Maynard pays off over and over again as generations of students learn, are motivated by them, and go on to have successful careers.

Most people outside of academia don’t realize how a school’s reputation is built, but Henry understood. We both agreed that having high-quality research faculty was very important to the success and the reputation of the business school and the university. When he and Patricia provided the gift to name the Tippie College of Business in 1999, they designated a good share to support faculty chairs, professorships, and research fellowships across the college. Without their support, the college would not be anything like it is today.

The last time I spoke to Henry was in November of 2021. He sounded like the Henry I’ve known forever. We had a great conversation. I thanked him for everything he’s done for the college and for me personally, and I reminded him of what a big impact he’s had on the college. He humbly refused to take credit and said, “Well, it’s all due to you guys and the effort you’ve put forth. I’ve just provided a little repayment for benefits I received while a student at the University of Iowa.” With his business acumen, I know he understood that his investments in Iowa will pay dividends in perpetuity. A truly lasting legacy."

Dan Collins (BBA68/PhD73)
Henry B. Tippie Research Chair in Accounting
As told to Amanda May

This article first appeared in a special print edition of Tippie Magazine memorializing Henry B. TippieAlumni are invited to update their contact information with the college to be placed on the mailing list for future print editions.