The University of Mississippi

Wilder, Stocks Honored

Dean Mark Wilder, left, is being honored with Professor Morris Stocks, right, by an anonymous donor with a gift to the Patterson School of Accountancy Building Fund. Photo by Thomas Graning/Ole Miss Digital Imaging Services

An anonymous donor contributed $200,000 to the Patterson School of Accountancy Building Fund to honor two longtime University of Mississippi leaders, Dean of Accountancy Mark Wilder and Professor Morris Stocks, with a named space in the school’s new home.

The gift pays tribute to the faculty members’ impact on the UM graduate’s life and career.

An architectural rendering of the future Patterson School of Accountancy building at the University of Mississippi.

“I was very fortunate to have Dr. Stocks and Dean Wilder as professors during my time at Ole Miss,” the donor said. “They are gifted teachers and amazing leaders who genuinely care about their students. They went above and beyond for me, not only in my accounting classes but also by supporting and showing interest in me personally.

“Whenever I meet other Ole Miss accountancy alumni and we share stories about the accountancy program, the conversation always leads to the positive impact Dr. Stocks and Dean Wilder had on them as well,” he continued. “Their leadership has been instrumental in the success the Patterson School has experienced nationally over the last 30 years.”

The new 100,000-square-foot, four-story PSOA building, projected to cost more than $120 million, will be constructed at the intersection of University Avenue and Grove Loop and overlook the university’s iconic Grove. The facility will centralize classes into one building and feature tiered auditoriums and classrooms, study areas, conference rooms, administrative and faculty office suites, as well as outdoor balconies and terraces.

Wilder, the KPMG Chair of Accountancy, joined the faculty in 1993 and has served as dean since 2006. With expertise in financial accounting, he teaches two intermediate accounting courses and a doctoral seminar on the subject. He also has been instrumental in developing the Patterson School’s highly successful internship program.

The dean was recognized with the Faculty Achievement Award in 2004, recognizing outstanding teaching, research and service, and with the Elsie M. Hood Outstanding Teacher Award in 2005, the most prized teaching honor.

Stocks, the Donald D. Jones Chair of Accountancy, joined the faculty in 1991 and teaches financial accounting. He also has served as UM’s interim chancellor and as the provost, vice chancellor for academic affairs and accountancy dean. He received the Elsie M. Hood Outstanding Teacher Award in 1998.

Wilder said he finds news of this gift humbling and uplifting.

“To have a former student make a gift acknowledging the impact of Dr. Stocks and me with a named space for us in our new building is such a wonderful honor,” he said.  “Having an opportunity to make a difference in the lives of our students is very rewarding.  So many of them over the years have enjoyed outstanding careers and made us proud. I feel fortunate to have landed at Ole Miss and the Patterson School back in 1993.”

“We are exceedingly grateful for this generous gift to help construct our new building,” Wilder continued. “Our goal is to be the No. 1 accountancy school in the nation, and this building will go far in helping us achieve that status.”

The school’s standards are high: it’s now ranked No. 1 in the SEC and No. 8 in the nation.

Stocks said he also feels honored by the gift.

“The Patterson School family is close, and our alumni and friends are exceptionally loyal,” he said. “The tradition of support and engagement they have built is a major reason for our extraordinary success.

“It continues to be such a privilege to teach and mentor students. To have a former student remember Dean Wilder and me in this way means so much and validates what I strive to accomplish in my career in higher education.”

A rendering of classroom space at the new Patterson School for Accountancy.

The donor said he was led to support the Patterson School’s Building Fund to show appreciation for his experience at Ole Miss and to support the school’s continued growth and national reputation.

“My accountancy degrees gave me the building blocks I needed for my business career,” the donor said. “I have been fortunate to be involved in several entrepreneurial business startups and real estate ventures. Knowing how to read and understand financial statements and pro formas has been crucial to my success. I would highly recommend the Patterson School to anyone wanting to pursue a business entrepreneurial career as well.”

Patterson School programs include the Bachelor of Accountancy, Master of Accountancy, Master of Accountancy & Data Analytics, Master of Taxation, Master of Taxation & Data Analytics and Doctor of Philosophy in Accountancy. Graduates are leaders in international accounting firms, chief executives in Fortune 500 companies, heads of governmental and not-for-profit agencies, and owners of businesses in cities nationwide.

To support the Patterson School of Accountancy Building Fund, click here, or send a check with the fund’s name noted on the memo line, to the University of Mississippi Foundation, 406 University Ave., Oxford, MS 38655. To learn more, contact Jason McCormick, executive director for development, at or 662-915-1757.

By Tina H. Hahn/UM Development