Vanderbilt student wins premier national leadership award

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Owen Graduate School of Management student John
Owens was named the 2004 winner of the Graduate Business Foundation
Student Leadership Award at the foundation’s annual conference last
weekend in Ann Arbor, Mich.

The annual Student Leadership Award recognizes the graduate business
student who best exemplifies the Graduate Business Foundation’s ideals
of leadership and innovation. Through its programs and information
exchange network, the foundation promotes leadership and innovation
among graduate business educators and students.

The annual conference and nominations for the award are limited to
representatives of the top 30 U.S. business schools and top 10
international business schools as ranked by Business Week, previous
host schools and the 17 Community of European Management schools. It is
the premier MBA student leadership event, bringing together student
presidents and other select leaders from these leading schools.

Owens said, "I am honored to be this year’s recipient of the Student
Leadership Award. Vanderbilt University has provided me with the
opportunity to work with some enormously talented people, from my
classmates to faculty, staff and administrators, over the last two
years. This is a tribute to all of them as I share this honor with

While pursuing his MBA, Owens established the Owen 2×1 campaign, a
student-run, student-led internship and career placement program, and
created Student Career Profiles, an online tool that captures each Owen
School student’s career preferences. He is vice president of the Owen
School Student Government Association and serves on the Student
Advisory Committee for the school’s Career Management Center.

Owens received his bachelor’s degree in accounting in 1994 from
Lipscomb University. Before enrolling in the Owen School, he was an
associate in equity capital markets for RBC Dain Rauscher and a
corporate finance business analyst at J.C. Bradford, now part of UBS.
He has held an internship for the last year with Detwiler, Mitchell
& Co., a Boston-based broker-dealer firm. He plans to pursue a
career in investment banking recruiting after he graduates in May.

The road to the award was a long one. He was nominated for the
Student Leadership Award by the staff of the Career Management Center,
named a finalist by the foundation’s award selection committee, and
then interviewed by the members of the Graduate Business Foundation
board of directors.

On accepting the award in Michigan last weekend, Owens delivered a
speech about his views on leadership and how his views and his
leadership ability have changed in the two years he has been a student
at the Owen School.

Owens is the second Owen School student in the 14-year history of
the award to receive this distinction. In 1996, Jody Handler was named
the winner for creating 100% Owen, a year-round volunteer program at
the school that thrives today.

For more information about Vanderbilt, please visit the News Service homepage at More information on the Owen School can be found at

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