Former corporate chief ethics officer to speak at Pamplin ethics conference
Jack Radke, an attorney and the former chief ethics officer for UnitedHealth Group and the former director of ethics for H.J. Heinz Company, will give the guest lecture, “Ethical Leadership: The Power of One,” at the 20th annual conference on business ethics on Tuesday, March 15, at 7 p.m. at Virginia Tech’s Burruss Auditorium.
The talk is free and open to the public, no tickets needed. Radke’s visit and the conference are sponsored by the Business Leadership Center of the Department of Management in the Pamplin College of Business and by Pamplin accounting alumni Robert F. Hogan Jr. (’78, ’80) and Jorge Del Alamo Jr. (’69) and his wife Lin.
Radke is currently of counsel with the Pittsburgh-based law firm of Cohen & Grigsby, where he concentrates his practice on corporate ethics and compliance programs and governance issues, U.S. and international acquisitions and divestitures, and securities law compliance. Elected to the board of the Ethics and Compliance Officer Association in 2005, he served as vice chair in 2008-2010. The largest membership organization in its field, the ECOA is credited with founding the ethics and compliance function in 1991.
In-house counsel at Heinz for 20 years, Radke built the company’s global ethics and compliance program as its first director of ethics. While at UnitedHealth Group, he was instrumental in rebuilding and refocusing its ethics office. The recipient of a bachelor’s degree in economics at Princeton University and a law degree and an MBA at Northwestern University, Radke has also taught business ethics as an adjunct faculty member at the University of Pittsburgh and Duquesne University.
During his Virginia Tech visit, he will meet Pamplin faculty members for an informal seminar. The conference will be part of a series of campus events exploring ethical issues in various disciplines during the week of March 14. “Faculty are encouraged to use this occasion to consider ethical issues related to the subject matter of their courses,” said Rich Wokutch, management professor and director of the department’s undergraduate programs.
“As in previous years, we will be tying this conference in with graduate and undergraduate strategy courses and ethics courses taught in Pamplin,” Wokutch said. “We invite faculty teaching other courses to do so as well. We have identified a couple of short cases related to the talk that are available for classroom use.” Events that week will include an “Ethics Bowl” competition, in which graduate-student teams will discuss several ethics-related case studies.
Previous speakers at the ethics conference have included academics, authors, government officials, and executives from Tyco, Enron, and Fairmont Hotels and Resorts.