Talk about pressure to do well in school …
Shelley Simpson, president of J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc. in Lowell, recently took a day to attend freshman orientation at the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. Part of the tour included the newly named J.B. Hunt Transport Department of Supply Chain Management at the Walton College of Business.
Simpson was there with her twin daughters, who will be freshmen at the university and majoring in — drum roll, please — supply chain management. Simpson and her husband, David, have also donated $175,000 for a student organization to promote diversity within the supply chain field.
“When they walked in, I gave them a sneak peek, here’s what’s coming,” Simpson said.
Simpson has also overcome her student mentality. She and other J.B. Hunt executives have worked for years with Walton College Dean Matt Waller, but Simpson, who graduated from UA in 1994, constantly referred to Waller as “Dean Waller.”
It was as if she were back in class and trying to be professional — and trying to get an A, she said.
As for the faculty: “They would just call me Shelley.”
“He’s now known to me as Matt because we’ve become good personal friends,” Simpson said, “along with many of the faculty, I know now by their first names.”