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A Leader in Entrepreneurship

A Leader in Entrepreneurship

A generous gift has established the McCain Executive-in-Residence position, building on BSC’s strength in fostering business innovation and entrepreneurship. 

When his daughter graduated from Birmingham-Southern College in 2015, David O. McCain III knew he wanted to continue to support the college in a significant way. A year later, he made a generous gift to establish the McCain Executive-in-Residence position on campus.

“Five generations of the McCain family have developed and owned businesses or worked as merchants, and I recognize the importance entrepreneurs play in developing strong, thriving communities,” said McCain, who lives in Hagerstown, Md. “It is our hope that this position will further strengthen the college’s business program and capitalize on the entrepreneurship niche BSC has already begun to develop.”

McCain and his sister, Susan C. McCain, gave the $500,000 contribution to create the position in honor of their parents, David O. McCain II and Christine D. McCain, and David’s late wife, Beverly Poe McCain. The McCain family has been connected with BSC since the 1930s. Sarah McCain Holt ’41 was the sister of David O. McCain II. She was married to the late Walter A. Holt ’36, and their daughter, Nanaline Holt ’64, followed in their footsteps. Susan’s son, John McCain, is a 2007 alumnus, and David’s daughter, Mary Katherine “Kat” McCain, is a 2015 alumna.

Craig Parker has been appointed to the position of McCain Executive-in-Residence in Entrepreneurship for the 2017-2018 academic year. Parker also is the Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Maynard Cooper. He has held senior management roles, ranging from chief financial officer to executive vice president to chief executive officer, at four technology companies. He earned his J.D. summa cum laude from the University of Alabama School of Law.

In 2015, Parker sold his communications company, Emergency CallWorks, to Motorola. Emergency CallWorks provides Next-Generation 9-1-1 (NG9-1-1) call-taking software for public safety.

He will teach IDS 209 (Entrepreneurial Thinking) and will oversee the Entrepreneurship Club. In addition, he will be working with students who want to start their own businesses or who are already running their own businesses.

The first holder of the Executive-in-Residence position was Jennifer Skjellum, president of nonprofit group TechBirmingham and co-founder of TechAlabama. During the 2016-2017 academic year, she taught three courses, fostering entrepreneurial thinking among BSC students, and collaborating with the Krulak Institute for Leadership, Experiential Learning, and Civic Engagement.