Meet a Tiger: Brandon Lockhart
With an IRS agent and an FBI financial analyst as parents, this Tiger learned the fine points of corporate finance at a young age. Today, he shares those lessons — as well as those he learned along the way — with his undergraduate and graduate students.
Meet Brandon Lockhart.
Title: Assistant professor of finance, Wells Fargo Faculty Scholar
Years at Clemson: Starting my fifth year here. I was a corporate banker for five years in Georgia before starting Ph.D. school at the University of Florida in 2004. My first academic job was at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 2009. I was fortunate enough to be able to move to Clemson University in 2013.
What I do at Clemson: I teach the introductory corporate finance course (FIN 3110), which is a course that provides instruction for some fundamental skills used in (nearly) all of our finance curriculum, but also studies 1/3 of the corporate financial manager (e.g., the chief financial officer of a corporation) functions. I also teach corporate financial analysis (FIN 4010), which is a new course that explores how to consume financial statement information (and other firm disclosures) for valuation purposes. I also teach the corporate financial management course for the MBA program. Finally, I conduct research on corporate finance topics. My interests are wide within corporate finance, but at the moment I am studying interesting questions about executive compensation and debt contracting.
What I love about Clemson: Tough question – what is there about Clemson that I couldn’t list here? I love raising my family here (I have been married for 17 years, and I have three children in the local schools). I enjoy coming to the office to work with colleagues who are very thoughtful and conscientious, caring and incredibly intelligent. I enjoy the beautiful campus, and the fact I live two miles away and can door-to-door commute in about 12 minutes. I also enjoy interacting with our outstanding students. I truly enjoy hearing from them and learning about their accomplishments.
Accomplishment I’m most proud of: I’m still waiting for that accomplishment…it’s coming…I can feel it! Seriously, I enjoy reading the comments from my students that I receive from their anonymous evaluations of my teaching. I put a lot of effort into my time with them, and it is nice to read that they appreciate my effort. I also enjoy hearing from them in the fall when they have returned from their internships. Sometimes they make a connection between a class lesson and their internship. I don’t think this type of feedback will ever get old to me.
Where I see myself in five years: Hopefully, I am with a healthy family, but also doing my part to get Clemson students so excited about corporate finance that they truly enjoy the (lifelong) process of learning.
Last thing I watched on TV: Honestly, my TV time is minimal. I rarely make time for it unless we’re talking sports, and usually (exception of college football) the game is on and I’m working/reading while it is on…Clemson or Georgia Tech (my undergraduate institution) football games will get my full attention. The last non-sports TV for me would likely have been a Seinfeld re-run. My favorite is the one when George is working for the Yankees and he hosts the Houston Astros in preparation for inter-league play. I can think of several people from my hometown of Macon, GA (home of the Allman Bros!) who talk and act exactly like those actors did from the Houston Astros.
Guilty pleasure: I enjoy bragging about my kids. It might not be the most efficient way to gain new friends or keep the ones I do have. My daughter is a sophomore at the local high school and she has already won two state cross country championships. Some lists have her as the 40th or so fastest sophomore in the U.S. in the 5,000 meters. I’m very proud of her because she works so hard and is so focused – she inspires me. My 13-year old son is also a developing distance runner. But when I brag about him, I usually emphasize his guitar-playing skills. I am completely untrained with guitar – don’t know what is good aside from what I hear – but he amazes me. He can sit down and listen to something like Stevie Ray Vaughan for an hour or so and have a solo picked out.
One thing people don’t know about you: My dad was a federal agent for the Treasury Department (IRS), who investigated cases of tax evasion – mostly due to the laundering of money earned selling illegal drugs. My mother was a financial analyst for the FBI. So, both were investigators for financial stuff. I learned early in life to tell the whole truth all the time – always! You could not get a fast-one past either one of them.
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