Rajendran "Raj" Murthy has been named J. Warren McClure Research Professor of Marketing at Rochester Institute of Technology's Saunders College of Business. He is the second professor from the business school to hold the esteemed research position-previously held by Professor Emeritus of Marketing Eugene H. Fram, who retired from RIT in 2008.
"Since joining Saunders College in 2009, Raj has been engaged in teaching and scholarship activities that align with the intent of the McClure Professorship," said Saunders College Dean Jacqueline Mozrall. "Teaching at both undergraduate and graduate levels, he has continued to innovate-and plans to continue to integrate analytics and quantitative skills into our marketing programs."
The associate professor of marketing, who is a recipient of RIT's 2016 Eisenhart Award for Outstanding Teaching, said he is deeply honored to continue the legacy as the J. Warren McClure Research Professor.
"It's a great honor, especially following Prof. Eugene Fram, the one and only person who held the position since 1977," said Murthy. "We have a similar philosophy to applied education, and this position allows me to continue my research, connect with industry partners and increase the visibility of marketing-related programs at RIT."
The Pittsford resident, who speaks six languages and has lived and worked in three continents, has been a pioneer in course development and integration of technology in the classroom. He created the Search Engine Marketing and Analytics class as part of RIT's new media marketing curriculum-in which students applied for, and won, multiple $120,000 grants from the Google for Nonprofits program to implement Google AdWords and raise awareness for a nonprofit client in the area. In the past eight years, his classes have helped more than 100 local businesses through pro-bono projects.
Born in Chennai (Madras), India, Murthy completed his engineering degree at age 20-before coming to the U.S. to work as a consultant for Dun and Bradstreet, and later at World Bank in Washington, D.C.
J. Warren McClure, a former owner of the Burlington Free Press who sold it to Gannett Co., was Gannett's first vice president of marketing, a position he held until his retirement in 1975, at the age of 55. He then became one of Vermont's leading philanthropists, and together with his wife, Lois, donated millions of dollars to dozens of organizations before his death in 2004 at the age of 84.