After more than two years of planning, on July 25 – 26, 2016, the Center for Business Ethics held a two-day conference and gala dinner at Bentley to celebrate the 40th anniversary since its founding. Among the 35 who presented papers, 24 were CBE Visiting Scholars from 13 countries, some of whom pursued research at the Center as far back as the early 1990s, and 11 were CBE Verizon Visiting Professors in Business Ethics. Additionally, there were four keynote speakers — former Congressman, Barney Frank, former US Deputy Attorney General, Paul McNulty, CEO of the Ethics & Compliance Initiative, Dr. Patricia Harned, and Federal Court and US Government Agency Appointed Ethics Monitor, Pat Gnazzo.
On Monday evening, July 25th, over 200 guests attended a gala dinner to celebrate this landmark in the history of the business ethics movement. Early in the evening, Bentley University President, Gloria Larson, lauded Center for Business Ethics founding Executive Director, Mike Hoffman, for his accomplishments over the previous four decades, but the biggest surprise of the night came when President Larson concluded the evening by returning to the stage and with great emotion announced that the University’s Board of Trustees had moved to rename the Center for Business Ethics in honor of Dr. Hoffman. Heretofore, she announced, the Center for Business Ethics would be named the W. Michael Hoffman Center for Business Ethics. The reason for renaming the Center was indicated on a plaque that she presented to Mike Hoffman and that will appear by the door of the Center. It reads in part, “In recognition of 40 years of distinguished service to Bentley University and the international business ethics movement."
The renaming of the Hoffman Center was also accompanied by an official proclamation that was read to all by President Larson. It states:
WHEREAS, the Center for Business Ethics is celebrating its 40th anniversary and is one of the world’s oldest and most highly regarded institutes for research and education in the field of business ethics, serving as a major catalyst in the development and success of the business ethics movement, both in the United States and around the globe.
WHEREAS, the Board of Trustees and the President wish to recognize W. Michael Hoffman for his insight, passion and exemplary leadership as the center’s Founding Executive Director and an influential voice within the wider business ethics community; for his 42 years of service as a distinguished and dedicated member of the Bentley faculty and campus community; and for the great respect and regard accorded to him by an international network of business executives, ethics and compliance professionals, academic scholars and researchers, and business students.
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Trustees and the President of Bentley University enthusiastically express their deep gratitude and esteem to W. Michael Hoffman and declare that, henceforth, the institute he established shall be named the W. Michael Hoffman Center for Business Ethics at Bentley University.
Gloria Cordes Larson, President, and Steven P. Manfredi, ’73, Chairman of the Board of Trustees