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UMD-Smith Experts Comment on Resignations by Pope Benedict and SBA’s Karen Mills

Feb 11, 2013
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College Park, Md. – The announced resignations of Pope Benedict XVI and Small Business Administration Head Karen Mills have drawn reaction from experts at the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business.

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Opportunities, Pitfalls for Benedict’s Successor

Gilad Chen, Ralph J. Tyser Professor of Organizational Behavior and Department Chair:, 301-405-0923

“Leaders play major roles in corporate, religious and political organizations. They are particularly critical in setting and executing the vision and direction of an organization, but also in helping to shape and clarify to organizational insiders and outsiders the core meaning of what the organization is all about, and how it can and should handle opportunities and threats in its external environment.

“As such, the sudden resignation announcement by Pope Benedict this (Monday) morning will no doubt have significant impact worldwide, and especially on the Catholic world. Succeeding the Pope will likely be particularly challenging to the Catholic Church, in light of the major crises experienced by the Church in the past decade, and given other major social and political changes worldwide.

The ideal successor will be one that would enable the Catholic Church to adapt effectively to current and future crises as well as capitalize on possible opportunities inherent in social and political changes. Such successor should, at the same time, create a renewed sense of meaning and hope throughout the Catholic world and other social, religious and political constituents who look up to the Catholic Church for moral, social and spiritual guidance.”

Obama Administration to Refocus on Small Business in Wake of Mills’ Departure

Cliff Rossi, Tyser Teaching Fellow (finance) and Executive-in-Residence:, 301-908-2536

"The departure of Karen Mills, head of the Small Business Administration, will bring focus back onto the agency and the Obama Administration’s efforts to work with Congress to streamline tax policy, incentivize hiring and otherwise establish policies that will improve the economic fortunes of a major contributor to long-term economic growth in this country."


About the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business 

The Robert H. Smith School of Business is an internationally recognized leader in management education and research. One of 12 colleges and schools at the University of Maryland, College Park, the Smith School offers undergraduate, full-time and part-time MBA, executive MBA, online MBA, specialty masters, PhD and executive education programs, as well as outreach services to the corporate community. The school offers its degree, custom and certification programs in learning locations in North America and Asia.