Marketing professor Robert Leone was named the winner of the Gilbert A. Churchill Award by the American Marketing Association for lifetime achievement in the academic study of marketing research, according to a press release by the American Marketing Association.
Leone, a professor in the Neeley School of Business, said he wrote more than 30 articles related to the topic of market research, worked with Fortune 500 companies and co-authored a marketing textbook which he taught from for 30 years.
George Low, an associate marketing professor, said that the Neeley School was fortunate to have Leone working in the marketing department.
“[The award] validated what we’ve known all along,” Low said. “He is one of the top marketing faculty in the world, in particular in his area in market research, and that is what this award recognizes.”
Though the award is based on a candidate’s contribution, practice and teaching of market research, Leone said he balanced those responsibilities with being available to his students.
“It’s not like I lock myself in an office and crank out articles and don’t engage with other students,” he said.
One of the things that separates his class from others like it around the country is that he is engaged in working with top companies and researchers, Leone said. This experience gave him an edge on market research.
Leone said that he credited much of his award to being around people who pushed him and challenged his thinking.
Of the fewer than 20 researchers who have won the award, one of Leone’s mentors, one of his classmates in graduate school and one of his students have been recipients as well, Leone said.
“Out of the short list of people who have won the award I feel a connectedness to those individuals, and again I think that is part of it8212;you are lucky enough to be around good people and good things happen to you,” Leone said.
Tyler Kettle, a former student of Leone’s, said that Leone was definitely the best professor he had at the university.
Kettle said marketing students who took Leone’s class believed he was a great professor of marketing research and he made class material easy to understand.
Leone currently serves as J. Vaughn and Evelyne H. Wilson Chair and teaches market research and Brand Management.