Nevada Tax Policy professor named in honor of Barbara Smith Campbell

Position in the University’s College of Business will focus research efforts and classroom implementation of special topics related to Nevada tax policy

Nevada Tax Policy professor named in honor of Barbara Smith Campbell

Position in the University’s College of Business will focus research efforts and classroom implementation of special topics related to Nevada tax policy

The University of Nevada, Reno's College of Business has named Mehmet Tosun, associate professor and chair of the Economics Department, the Barbara Smith Campbell Distinguished Professor of Nevada Tax Policy. The four-year professorship is designed to assist in tax policy research at the state and local level, with a primary focus in Nevada. 

As both an undergraduate and graduate instructor and researcher, Tosun believes the professorship is another way to bring tax policy research into the classroom.

"Students will not only have the opportunity to participate in this research, but they will also get the chance to see how it applies to our state and local government," Tosun said. "I look forward to starting a tax policy research program in which students will be involved."  

Tosun will organize a local and state industry advisory board comprised of members active and familiar with tax policy, both in government and in the private sector. The board will meet periodically and function as a source of information and up-to-date practices.  

The research created by this professorship will be used in a variety of ways.  

"Government is clearly a starting point," he said. "However, the academic component is very important as well. In order to help the private sector better understand Nevada tax policy we will be writing white papers, offering short fiscal policy briefs and making important projects, journal articles and policy reports available to the public as well."  

In September 2014, the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation made a $1 million gift to the University to establish the professorship in honor of Barbara Smith Campbell ('78) and her many years of dedication and service to the Reynolds Foundation, the University and the state of Nevada.  

Campbell is principal of Consensus LLC, a consulting firm that provides strategic tax planning for businesses located or planning to locate in the state of Nevada. She has a total of 28 years of state and local government tax expertise. She was a University of Nevada, Reno Foundation board trustee for three terms, 2000-01, 2005-06 and 2007-08, and was the board's vice chair for finance. Prior to starting Consensus LLC, Campbell served as board chair of the Nevada Tax Commission.

"Tax policy is an important issue for our state," Campbell said. "It is my hope this professorship will be viewed as the 'go to' research arm for the executive and legislative branches of the state of Nevada. Developing sound tax policy requires the consideration of many components and should be a thoughtful, deliberative process. You cannot commence such a process during a 120-day legislative session. It needs to begin long before."  

Tosun's main research interests and expertise include public finance, particularly state and local public finance, and taxation. He has worked as consultant for the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the United Cities and Local Governments, and two United Nations agencies. In 2013, Tosun received the Dean's Research Professorship Award from the University's College of Business. He was recognized as the Best Researcher of the Year in 2009 by Beta Gamma Sigma, an international honor society for business studies. Tosun will be the local organizer of the International Institute of Public Finance Congress in summer 2016 which will be held in Lake Tahoe.  

"Mehmet is an incredible asset to University, the College of Business and the community," Greg Mosier, dean of the University's College of Business, said. "I'm confident that in this role, he will continue to assist the College in its ongoing effort to become an influential driver in economic development for the state and the region."

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