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October 15, 2010

La Salle Accounting Professor Susan Borkowski Receives University’s Faculty Distinguished Scholarship Award

Professor James Smither Receives Lindback Award

La Salle President Michael J. McGinniss, F.S.C., presents accounting professor Susan Borkowski, Ph.D., with the University's Faculty Distinguished Scholarship Award during the recent Honors Convocation ceremony.

In recognition for her exemplary scholarly achievements and research, La Salle accounting professor Susan Borkowski, Ph.D., has been named the University’s 2010 Faculty Distinguished Scholar Award recipient. She was presented with the award at the University’s recent Honors Convocation.

“I cannot imagine teaching without engaging in my research, or vice versa,” said Borkowski. “I am honored to receive the award, but I feel just a twinge of guilt in accepting it—I am being recognized for just doing what I love to do!”

Borkowski is considered one of the leaders in research on the issue of transfer pricing in accounting, which is a tax-management strategy. The transfer price is the amount which one subsidiary in a multinational company charges another subsidiary in the same company for the transferred product or service. Manipulating the transfer prices allows a company to shift profits from high-tax to low-tax countries, thus increasing their profits.

She has worked with the United Nations as an expert on transfer pricing regulations for developing countries, and as a result she served as the main author of the publication, Transfer Pricing: United Nations Conference on Trade and Development Series on Issues in International Investment Agreements. She has also received research grants from the Government of Canada as well as the U.S. Agency for International Development.

When presenting Borkowski with the award, La Salle Provost Joseph Marbach, Ph.D., said, “Most impressive to the (Award selection) committee is the fact that she has maintained this scholarly output without sacrificing her reputation as a good teacher. She has become an internationally-recognized scholar in her field while still maintaining a deep and abiding commitment to her school, department, and students.”

Borkowski began her research on transfer pricing for her doctoral dissertation and never thought it would become the issue that she would spend much of her professional life researching. “It is a constantly changing area; the recent change in financial reporting requirements create much uncertainty about the impact on a corporation’s tax status and responsibilities,” she said.

Since arriving at La Salle in 1989, Borkowski has been recognized for her work both inside and outside of the classroom. She has received the School of Business Teaching Excellence Award, served twice as the Lindback Research Professor, and received a Kemper Foundation Grant, as well as several University summer research grants.

She has led numerous student teams to wins in national case-study competitions, and she serves as the faculty advisor and president of the Beta Gamma Sigma Honor Society, for which she was named the Nation’s Top Faculty Advisor in 2009.

A resident of Haddonfield, N.J., Borkowski earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from Saint Peter’s College with the intention of going to medical school, but despite a 3.9 GPA was not able to get into medical school. “It was a different time then; it was not easy for women to get into medical school,” said Borkowski. She starting taking accounting courses at night and earned her bachelor’s degree in accounting from Rutgers University. “My father was an accountant, and I’ve always loved numbers, so it ended up being the perfect fit for me.” She went on to earn her master’s in business administration from the University of Maryland, College Park, and her doctoral degree in accounting from Temple University.