It is not often that an association has an employee for nearly 28 years, especially one with true dedication and a stellar work ethic. Mary Jo Gust was just that kind of employee, and will be greatly missed by her AACSB family.
Mary Jo joined AACSB International on October 7, 1985 as a data processing associate responsible for maintaining all data collection systems. It was not long before she became AACSB's information processing supervisor, where she was the lead for data processing and system operation procedures, as well as additions to internal software and hardware assets. Mary Jo had a wide array of skills outside of technology. In fact, she was commonly known as the go-to-person for grammar and spelling questions. We all laugh as we remember her teaching us that the word "toward" is never used in a plural form. She always reminded us of those little writing rules with a smile and gentle nature.
In 1994, Mary Jo moved into more advanced system operation, including system analysis, design, and implementation to name a few. All of which placed her in a perfect position to embrace the Internet and its take off in 1995. In 2004, when AACSB relocated its headquarters to Tampa, Mary Jo was one of 11 employees that followed the association to its new location in Florida. Despite the "muggy" Florida weather, as she always would say, Mary Jo quickly made Tampa her new home. From then on, Mary Jo coordinated all of AACSB's web needs, including the editing and programming of this publication—moving eNEWSLINE from a print to an electronic publication. She kept AACSB's website and digital communications going with endless dedication. In July of 2012, Mary Jo embraced a new role as AACSB's data services coordinator working closely with global research and data.
Because of Mary Jo's tenure with AACSB, she was often seen as the 'mother hen' who looked after the association's youngest staff members. We look back now and laugh as we think about her teasing several of us when we were in our early 20's about how she started working at AACSB before we were born. That thought still is somewhat mind boggling to us ... 28 years with one organization, now that is dedication.
Mary Jo passed away on July 8, 2013 after a long battle with kidney disease. The AACSB staff and its members worldwide thank Mary Jo for her more than three decades of service to the business education community. She was truly a great employee and friend. We will miss her dearly.
Mary Jo Gust