New finance chair brings wealth of experience


James Thomson said he's been toying with the idea of joining academia for a long time. So, after 26 years in various roles at the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, he chose The University of Akron's College of Business Administration (CBA) for his first full-time academic position.

James Thomson

Thomson, currently vice president in the Research Department at the Federal Reserve, begins his new duties as chair of CBA's Department of Finance on Aug. 2.

"I feel good about coming to The University of Akron," Thomson said. "The University is such a dynamic place with a lot of upside potential. I'm eager to become a part of the College of Business Administration. I'll be working with a great set of colleagues in the faculty."

Students to gain from 'real world' insights

CBA Dean Ravi Krovi said the hiring of Thomson from "the real world" is part of a larger effort by UA to collaborate with industry to provide a world-class business education.

"We embrace the idea that people with business experience are great teachers for our students," said Ravi Krovi, dean of the College of Business Administration. "Jim Thomson brings a unique blend of academic credentials and a wealth of experience in financial markets and banking to the college. We believe he will add significant value and leadership to our high-caliber finance programming at the undergraduate and MBA levels."

A financial economist, Thomson's research interests focus on financial markets and institutions, historical banking, government-sponsored enterprises and why problems of large banks are resolved in a different way than investment banks or such industries as car companies.

Vast range of experiences

Prior to joining the Federal Reserve in 1986, Thomson worked as a financial economist at the U.S. General Accounting Office. He is currently a member of the American Finance Association as well as the Financial Management Association. He has published numerous articles on federal deposit insurance, bank structure and bank capital regulation, including articles in highly prestigious journals, such as the Journal of Finance, Journal of Money, Credit, and Banking, and Journal of Small Business Management.

Thomson holds a master's and Ph.D. in economics from The Ohio State University and a bachelor's degree in economics from Georgia Tech. He also has held adjunct teaching positions at Cleveland State, Case Western Reserve and Kent State universities.

Media contact: Laura Massie, 330-972-6476 or