Tuesday, November 15, 2022

Professor Mark Penno taught analytical and theoretical classes at Tippie, which makes perfect sense considering he first earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy before moving to accounting for his master’s and Ph.D. His teachings helped form the reputation of Tippie students being able to think through and analyze problems—one of the reasons our graduates are sought after.

One of Penno’s former students, Bradford Hepfer (BBA06/MAc07/PhD16), who is now an assistant professor at Texas A&M, said, “I’ve interacted with many analytical researchers—they are all remarkably intelligent and creative scholars—but none hold a candle to Mark when it comes to his ability to bring life to challenging, complicated, and otherwise inaccessible theories and models.”

Kathryn Brightbill (PhD18), now an assistant professor at Utah State University, remembers his helpful class notes. “Even now I offer them to students who are looking to understand one of the papers we have covered. I’m not ashamed to admit I occasionally look at them myself! He is a good person, great teacher, and fantastic friend. With his retirement, the academic world will be a little less fun.”

Penno joined the University of Iowa faculty in 2004 and was most recently the Sidney G. Winter Professor of Accounting. Apart from his research and refereeing of peer’s research, Penno spent much of his time teaching MBA students in Des Moines.

Some career highlights include being ranked #1 in 2012 for accounting research productivity for the Ph.D. class of 1983 by Issues in Accounting Education, winning the best paper award from Accounting Horizons in 2009, serving as the director of the McGladrey Institute for Accounting Education and Research at Iowa from 2011 to 2014, and being named a fellow of the Accounting and Economics Society.

Penno plans to spend retirement in Iowa City and his second home in Galena, Ill. with his wife, Bonnie.


This article appeared in the 2022 issue of Iowa Ledger.