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Portrait of Joseph A. Greene by Mississippi artist, Marshall Bouldin III

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Under the guidance of Joseph A. Greene, founding dean of the College of Business and Economic Development, the nascent program he was recruited to develop in 1949 grew into one of the largest colleges at The University of Southern Mississippi by the time of his retirement in 1985. His ability to make much of the resources at hand, a lesson learned growing up in Virginia during the Great Depression, coupled with extraordinary tenacity and vision, saw the business program grow into a school and ultimately an accredited college consisting of four schools.

Stationed briefly at Camp Shelby during World War II, his “temporary” return to Mississippi extended until his death in 1990. His keen humor, insight, and drive won him the admiration of administration, faculty, students, businessmen, and neighbors. In an interview given to USM Alumni News at his retirement, he remarked, “This became my child here, to build it and try to make it into something. I really feel that I have contributed to its development. Many times there have been a lot of setbacks, a lot of fighting to achieve what I have gotten, but I’m proud of it and I guess maybe having a job you like in a place you like is something worthwhile in life. That’s what I’ve had.”