Tupelo, Mississippi formerly of Athens - Dr. William Crawford Flewellen, Jr., 100, passed away Tuesday, March 12, 2019 at his residence surrounded by his loving family. A native of Eufaula, Alabama, William was born August 31, 1918 to William Crawford and Lena Hurt Flewellen. During his high school years, William was chosen as Most Likely to Succeed by his peers and was Valedictorian of his graduating class. He was also an outstanding athlete and lettered in boxing, basketball, baseball and football where he played both offense and defense. Growing up, William was raised in a Methodist church where his grandfather preached "fire and brimstone" from the pulpit. He rarely missed Sunday morning church as a child or later with his wife.
Flewellen received his Bachelor's and Master's degrees from the University of Alabama before earning a Ph.D. in Business and Economics from Columbia University and a post-doctorate from Harvard Univsersity. After his tenures at the University of Alabama and Mississippi State, Flewellen went on to serve as business college dean at the University of Georgia, where he remained until his retirement in 1989.
Flewellen began his career at the University of Alabama where he served as a Professor of Accounting and Assistant Dean for the Business College. He completed his ROTC at University of Alabama and joined the Army Air-Corp. He spent two and a half years in the Philippines during World War II. He spent 21 years in the Military and retired as a Lt. Colonel.
In 1961, he became Dean of the College of Business at Mississippi State University, where he served until 1968. He then he moved to Athens, Georgia to become Dean of the Business School at University of Georgia for 14 years. While at the University of Georgia, Flewellen was instrumental in the creation of America's Small Business Development Centers (SBDC). The SBDC is now a nation-wide, federally-supported program of management and technical assistance for America's small business owners and entrepreneurs. Today, there are local SBDCs in all 50 states.
In 1975, William C. Flewellen, Jr., Dean of the College of Business Administration at the University of Georgia and incoming President of the American Assembly of Collegiate Schools of Business, was appointed to the Small Business Association's National Advisory Board.
Dean Flewellen, "convinced that every state - and, in turn, the nation as a whole - would benefit from a small business program that offered the resources of higher education, small business and government." In May of 1976, plans for a University Business Development Center (UBDC) program were formally announced, calling it a "bold new proposal."
As the new SBDC pilot program grew, support was growing on Capitol Hill for a congressionally authorized program. Senator Gaylord Nelson, Chairman of the Senate Small Business Committee, introduced the Small Business Development Center Original cosponsors were Senator William Hathaway of Maine and good friend, Senator Sam Nunn of Georgia. Twenty-nine senators ultimately cosponsored the bill. President Carter signed the bill into law on July 2, 1980. The Small Business Development Act of 1980 authorized the SBDC program at an initial annual funding level of $20 million.
Flewellen has held numerous National and Federal appointments. He was on dozens of boards as President, Vice President, Chairman of Committees. A few of these were, the Georgia Council on Economic Education as a trustee, American Accounting association, Small Business Development Center Directors Association, American Assembly of Collegiate Schools of Business, southern Business Administration Association, Financial Executives Institute, National Association of Accountants, National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges and Center for the Study of Automation and Society.
Dean Flewellen, for small business development centers, consulted with hundreds of colleges and businesses throughout. He delivered powerful speeches in the United States and overseas in an effort to empower, enhance, and bring change to the business education standards of countries far and wide by sharing the United States' model for education for business. A few examples include:
Consulting to the Minister of Education in Cameroon, West Africa to help them change to the U.S. model for education for business, helping to establish an MBA degree program at Escuela de Administration y Finanzas y Tecnologiss (EAFIT), Columbia, South America-school of Business and assisting in programs, lecture and consultation with school of business directors at The University of South Africa, Pretoria and the Republic of South Africa.
Flewellen was listed in Who's Who in Georgia, Outstanding Atlantian, Who's Who in American Colleges and Universities Administration, Who's Who in American Education, Leaders in Education Community leaders and Noteworthy Americans, Who's Who in America, Who's Who in the world and many more.
Some of Flewellen's accomplishments, such as awards and Honor Societies include the Algernon Sydney, Sullivan Award, Pugsley Award, Blue Key Award, Faculty Fellow Award, Omicron Delta Kappa, Gridiron Secret Society, Beta Gamma Sigma, Delta Sigma Pi, Phi Beta Lambda and Bata Alpha Psi.
During his years in Athens, Dean Flewellen was a member of the Athens Area Chamber of Commerce, Economic Development Committee, Chairman of Marketing Division, Downtown Athens Committee, Steering Committee of Economic Development Division, Industrial Committee, Director of the Business council of Georgia, Georgia Small Business Association, Athens Technical Education Center, Computer and Data Processing Program, and Board of Commissioners of Georgia Boy Scouts of America.
While he lived in Starkville, Mississippi, Dean Flewellen was member of Mississippi Economic Council, Oktibbeha County Industrial Development Foundation, Industrial and Economic Council, Mississippi Employment and Security Commission, Mississippi Heart Fund and Rotary Club.
Some of Flewellen's major fundraising efforts include the J.M. Tull Chair of Accounting, J.M. Tull Endowment, School of Accounting, Georgia Bankers Chair of Banking, Public Utilities Economics Chair, Georgia's Savings and Loan League Chair, Scholarship funds, SBDC, Marketing Research Program Endowment from Coca-Cola and Ford Foundation.
Dr. Flewellen had a countless number of reports published in articles such as "Educating the Accountant for the 80's", "Current Trends in Accounting", "Cost Control Problems of Small Manufacturing Firms", "A Changing University Environment and its Effect on Education", "The Roll of Educational Institutions", "Market Potential for Bank Charge Cards", "The Application of People's Savings and Loan" and " A Better Road to Collegiate Education for Accounting" to name a few.
An endowed scholarship fund was created in Flewellen's name at Mississippi State University as well as the W.C. Flewellen Classroom in the College of Business. The Dean W. C. Flewellen, Jr. Endowed Chair in Marketing will be used to recruit or retain an outstanding scholar in the field of marketing, one that excels in teaching, research and service.
His family will remember him as a devoted husband and father who loved them unconditionally. They will treasure the last few years he spent relaxing with his family, planting beautiful flowers in the yard and caring for their five dogs. Especially Little Fella, who he adopted after his wife passed and followed him everywhere.
Survivors include his daughter, Susan Flewellen Heard of Tupelo; four grandchildren, Dr. Richard Franklin Heard (Natalie) of Algood, Tennessee, William Flewellen Heard of Tupelo, John Rhodes Heard (Tiffany) of Memphis, Tennessee and Jeanette Smith Jewsbury (Steve) of Easley of South Carolina; six great-grandchildren; and very special friend Aileen Scott of Athens.
He was preceded in death by his wife of 66 years, Tommie Sue Kendrick Flewellen; daughter, Mary Jane From; two sisters, Leila "Lil" Alice Tatum and Willie May Flewellen Stewart.
Visitation will be from 2 p.m. until service time Saturday, March 23, 2019 in the Lou Bland Memorial Chapel at First United Methodist Church in Tupelo.
A memorial service will be 3 p.m. Saturday, March 23, 2019 in the Lou Bland Memorial Chapel at First United Methodist Church in Tupelo. W.E. Pegues Funeral Directors is in charge of the arrangements.
In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Our Artworks, 603 Clayton Ave Tupelo, MS 38804.
Expressions of sympathy may be left at www.peguesfuneralhome.com