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Introducing Marlys Lipe

It is our pleasure to welcome Dr. Marlys Lipe to the School of Accounting as the Cramer Professor of Accounting!  Marlys was awarded her B.A. in Business Administration (summa cum laude) from Alma College in 1979, and her MBA in Business Administration (1981) and PhD in Accounting & Behavioral Decision Making (1985) from the University of Chicago.

Before coming to the University of South Carolina, Marlys taught at the University of Oklahoma where she held the Rath Chair in Accounting, George Washington University, University of Colorado, and the University of Michigan.   Dr. Lipe teaches undergraduate and masters-level courses in managerial accounting, and doctoral research seminars.  She conducts research on judgment and decision making issues of firm managers and investors who use accounting information.  Dr. Lipe's research has been published in accounting journals such as The Accounting Review, Journal of Accounting Research, and Review of Accounting Studies, and psychology journals such as Psychological Bulletin and Journal of Behavioral Decision Making.  Marlys is also a Certified Management Accountant.

Marlys’ interest in accounting stems from a love of numbers developed in her high school math classes.  Given this budding interest, as a class assignment she interviewed a cousin regarding his career as a CPA and this experience led her to take accounting courses in college.  Additionally, she took a career aptitude test that showed that her personality was suited for accounting or psychology (the two areas she now merges in her research).  From a teaching aspect, Marlys states that it is exciting to watch  students “catch on” to accounting concepts and that seeing them make those connections is the most satisfying part of teaching.  In regards to research, Marlys says that she really enjoys designing studies.  But she also enjoys reading the research of others.  She views reading others’ research as an “opportunity to learn”.  Her appreciation for the time and effort that others put into their work allows her to view their findings from the perspective of a “student” who is learning from the author’s research and experimentation.  Marlys believes that the research of others is a gift of which scholars should avail themselves, considering the large amounts of time and effort that have been invested in the work. 

Marlys is married to Dr. Robert Lipe, who joined the School of Accounting last fall.  (See the article in the Fall 2013 issue of Reflections.)  They live on an acreage in West Columbia with a pond that serves as home to several dozen pet ducks.  Marlys’ fascination with ducks began in Oklahoma when the prior owner of their home left three ducks on their pond.  Marlys enjoyed watching them so much that she began to collect a variety of ducks, chickens, guineas and even a turkey.  She began to work with the Duck Rescue Network and a local wildlife facility, rescuing and relocating injured and abandoned ducks and geese.  Over the past five years, Marlys has placed approximately 300 ducks and geese per year! 

Marlys’ pet ducks moved with her and Bob from Oklahoma this past winter in a trailer that the Lipes’ modified especially for the comfort and needs of their unique family.  It was a challenging trip and the ducks were just as happy as the people to finally arrive in South Carolina.  It was an exciting day when the majority of the ducks were allowed to go to their new pond, where they very happily swim and enjoy life.  Some of Marlys’ ducks, however, never leave the pen.  These are her “special needs” babies, a legacy of working with the wildlife rehab facility.  This group has a variety of health problems from minor deformities to balance problems but Bob and Marlys try to give each one a good life.  They have even rigged a zip line for the one with balance problems so he can run about the pen without falling over.  It is obvious that Marlys is a very good duck mother!  Marlys says that the best time of the day is when she can cut up a few tomatoes (the ducks’ favorite treat) and hand them out to the ducks in the evening.  The ducks crowd around her, many eating out of her hands. (Click here for a short slide show of the Lipes’ ducks’ travels from Oklahoma to South Carolina.  Marlys says to be ready to laugh at this unique adventure.)

In her spare time, Marlys likes to read mysteries.  Some of her favorite authors are Tony Hillerman, Elizabeth George, and Agatha Christie. 

We welcome Marlys to the School of Accounting and look forward to the upcoming years with her and Bob as part of our family!