On Friday, Nov. 2, as part of Homecoming Weekend, Trevecca Nazarene University will honor Nashville businessman Gerald D. Skinner in a naming ceremony for one of its schools—the Skinner School of Business and Technology.
Skinner, a CPA, has had 43-year association with Trevecca which began in 1969 when joined Trevecca’s faculty to teach in its newly created business department. He served 17 years in that role and as chair of that department. Students who studied under Skinner credit him for their success in business, noting how his mentoring them inspired them to achieve and how his friendship and interest in them made them work hard. During his 17 years of leadership in the business department, that area of the university thrived, becoming one of the most successful and strongest programs in Trevecca. In 1986 Skinner left teaching to devote his time to CompCo, a software development corporation that he had co-founded. He served as the CEO of the corporation and oversaw its growth, with customers across the U. S. and in Canada. He retired from this position in 2010.
After leaving Trevecca’s faculty, Skinner served Trevecca as an a member of the President’s Advisory Council (1986-1991), an unpaid consultant and financial advisor (1991-2005), a member of its Board of Trustees (1997-present and as chair of that group, 2001-2004), and chair of the University’s capital campaign that raised $28.5 million for scholarship endowment and construction of Waggoner Library and the Center for Instructional Technology.
In order to fulfill his passion to inspire and impact the lives of students over a long period of time, Skinner endowed two scholarship funds, one for accounting students and one for religion students. Through the business scholarship, begun in the 1970s,and the religion scholarship, begun in 1997, Skinner has achieved his goal of changing the lives of students who received those scholarships.
In recognition of his service to Trevecca, the University has honored Skinner with these awards: Faculty Member of the Year, 1972; recipient of the LLD honorary degree, 1990; President’s Service Award, 1991; McClurkan Award, 1997; Lyla T. Mackey Diakonas Award, 2005.
The renaming ceremony will take place at 11 AM, on Friday, Nov. 2, at 11 AM, at the conclusion of the Founder’s Day Chapel, in which a panel of Skinner’s former students will share their accounts of his influence on their lives. Founder’s Day Chapel will take place at 10 AM in the sanctuary of Trevecca Community Church of the Nazarene, adjacent to the campus.
“When the story of a great university is told, the main characters in the story will be professors who shaped the character of those who love the university. One of our main characters is Dr. Gerald Skinner. When Trevecca business students tell their Trevecca stories, Dr. Skinner’s name is part of those stories. It is our delight to honor him on Homecoming weekend,” said Dan Boone, president of Trevecca.