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W. Michael Hoffman Named Hieken Professor of Business and Professional Ethics at Bentley

June 11, 2006

W. Michael Hoffman, founding director of the Center for Business Ethics at Bentley, was named the first Hieken Professor of Business and Professional Ethics. The commitment comes at an auspicious moment, as the Center for Business Ethics celebrates 30 years of promoting the study of ethics across business disciplines.

"The Center for Business Ethics is one of the first centers of its kind in the world, and it's gratifying to have a professorship that clearly recognizes the work we've been doing for the past four decades," says Hoffman. "Being the first recipient of the professorship is one of the greatest honors bestowed on me during my 37-year academic career."

The endowed professorship was established by Charles and Donna Hieken, whose son, Seth, earned a Master of Science in Finance from Bentley in 1993.

"The study of ethics can have a profound effect on our society," Mr. Hieken said in an interview with the Bentley College Observer magazine. "Not just on business, but on politics and on the world. When we see an academic center that has produced 30 years of good work in this area, we want to do what we can to encourage it."

The Center for Business Ethics has been a leader in fostering dialogue on business ethics in academic and corporate settings, and bridging the gap between ethical theory and business practice. In 1991, the center helped found the Ethics Officer Association (renamed the Ethics and Compliance Officer Association), an alliance of ethics professionals for which Hoffman was the first executive director. The group now boasts more than 1,200 members from some 700 companies. The center draws support from corporate sponsors such as General Electric, Guardsmark, Liberty Mutual, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Raytheon, Sears, State Street Bank, and Verizon.

Hoffman has devoted most of his career to the study of business ethics, publishing 16 books and more than 70 articles, and is a highly sought-after commentator for news reporters covering ethics issues. Over the years, his expertise and counsel has benefited hundreds of corporations and professional organizations, business executives and ethics officers, scholars and students.


BENTLEY UNIVERSITY is one of the nation’s leading business schools, dedicated to preparing a new kind of business leader – one with the deep technical skills, broad global perspective, and high ethical standards required to make a difference in an ever-changing world. Our rich, diverse arts and sciences program, combined with an advanced business curriculum, prepares informed professionals who make an impact in their chosen fields. Located on a classic New England campus minutes from Boston, Bentley is a dynamic community of leaders, scholars and creative thinkers. The Graduate School emphasizes the impact of technology on business practice, in offerings that include MBA and Master of Science programs, PhD programs in accountancy and in business, and customized executive education programs. The university enrolls approximately 4,100 full-time undergraduate, 140 adult part-time undergraduate, 1,430 graduate, and 43 doctoral students. Bentley is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges; AACSB International – The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business; and the European Quality Improvement System, which benchmarks quality in management and business education. For more information, please visit

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