Running the George

Jeffrey Stinson began his tenure this summer as the new dean of the George Dean Johnson, Jr. College of Business and Economics. Stinson, who previously served as dean of Central Washington University’s College of Business, has a Ph.D. in marketing from the University of Oregon, an M.B.A. and a M.A. in recreation and leisure studies, both from the University of Minnesota, and an undergraduate degree in sport studies and management at Bemidji State University. Here he shares his passion for outdoor activities and his decided dislike of a certain yellow fruit.

Where were you born?Champaign, Illinois.

What did you dream of being when you were a child?
Professional athlete or veterinarian.

Who was your favorite teacher, and why?

Dennis Howard, who was my dissertation advisor and still very good friend and mentor. We just hit it off from day 1. He could be my second dad.

What was your first job?
Coaching, training volunteer coaches and managing Special Olympics events.

What’s a talent you wish you had?
The ability to instantly remember names.

What book is on your nightstand right now?
Insight by Tasha Eurich.

What’s your favorite way to unwind?
Run, bike, hike, kayak … really any outdoor activity.

Do you have any pets?

Yes, two dogs. Nutmeg (mixed breed) and Kip (chow chow).

What three albums would you want with you on a desert island?
Anything by the Goo Goo Dolls or Gryffin.

What’s your favorite vacation place?
Whistler, British Columbia.

What or who inspires you?
Our students.

Favorite TV or streaming show?
Any live sports.

What 3 people, alive or dead, would you invite to a dinner party?
I generally try to avoid dinner parties , but if I had to, Eluid Kipchoge, Meb Keblezighi and Deanna Kastor, all great marathon runners.

What five items (not counting pets) in your possession have special significance for you?
Inukshuk (from Whistler); stuffed bears from my mother representing each university I have attended or worked; pictures of the soccer teams I have coached over the years; certain running race awards that I have won over the years.

Tell us about something on your bucket list.
Tough question, as if there is something I want to do I generally go do it.

What’s your guilty pleasure (food, music, TV or movie)?
Long hikes.

Do you prefer the mountains or the beach?

What’s your favorite holiday and why?
Summer vacation, not really a holiday, but getting away for a week or two in the summer is my favorite part of the year.

What’s your favorite thing about USC Upstate?
The people.  Everyone I have met has been wonderful.

What’s something most people don’t know about you?
Well, it seems to already be out here, but I hate bananas.  I will starve before I will eat a banana or any food that has bananas as an ingredient.