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Global business education organization names Witherspoon ’85 ‘influential leader’

February 05, 2019

Amy Ponzillo, AACSB International,
Michael Tullier, APR, Tuskegee University, Office of Communications, Public Relations and Marketing

Procter & Gamble executive and 1985 Tuskegee University graduate Barron Witherspoon Sr. is among the 33 business school graduates honored by AACSB International (AACSB) — the world’s largest business education alliance — as the 2019 Class of Influential Leaders. The annual challenge recognizes notable alumni from AACSB-accredited schools whose inspiring work serves as a model for the next generation of business leaders.

Based at P&G’s worldwide headquarters in Cincinnati, where he serves as vice president of corporate industry affairs, Witherspoon leads the company’s external relationships and partnerships with trade associations and thought leaders that affect public policy and industry standards across the consumer goods industry. He also oversees development of global trade policies and practices for the world’s largest consumer goods company.

“AACSB is honored to recognize Barron Witherspoon and congratulates Tuskegee University for its role in preparing alumni who are leading examples of business education as a force for good in the world,” said Thomas R. Robinson, president and CEO of AACSB. “The diversity of backgrounds, industries and career paths of the 2019 Class of Influential Leaders demonstrates that AACSB-accredited schools are preparing graduates to succeed wherever their passions may take them.”

After graduating from Tuskegee in 1985, Witherspoon began his career in P&G’s general advertising department. Since then, he has held numerous positions of progressive corporate responsibility in its marketing, finance and customer business development units. Notable company appointments within P&G include leading its global Paper Products business with Wal-Mart, the company’s largest customer, and serving as global operations vice president for strategic revenue and pricing management.

As vice president and general manager for P&G’s Asia business, Witherspoon oversaw all customer-facing operations in Southeast Asia, Australasia, India, and later Korea and Japan. Based at the time in Singapore, he led P&G’s business in a trading environment of more than seven million outlets — the highest store concentration in the world. His region spanned 13 time zones and served one-third of the world’s consumers.

While in college, Witherspoon was an exchange student in Konstanz, Germany. He earned degrees in education from Eastern Florida State College and in economics from Tuskegee, where he graduated cum laude. He trained for the ministry at Cincinnati Bible Seminary, is a licensed and ordained minister, and currently leads a ministry in cross-cultural worship.

In addition to serving on the Tuskegee University Board of Trustees since 2017, Witherspoon has held numerous board positions for civic and industry organizations. This currently includes chairing the INROADS National Board, co-chairing the E2E Value Chain Pillar of Consumer Goods Forum, and serving as a member of both the National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) Foundation Board and The Executive Leadership Council.

Now its fourth year, the Influential Leaders challenge has recognized almost 200 business school graduates for creating lasting impact in business and society. All honorees are have earned an undergraduate, graduate or doctoral degree from one of the more than 800 AACSB-accredited business schools worldwide. For more information on the Influential Leaders challenge, and to view a full list of honorees, visit

About AACSB International
As the world’s largest business education alliance, AACSB International (AACSB) connects educators, students, and business to achieve a common goal: to create the next generation of great leaders. Synonymous with the highest standards of excellence since 1916, AACSB provides quality assurance, business education intelligence, and professional development services to more than 1,600 member organizations and over 800 accredited business schools worldwide. AACSB’s mission is to foster engagement, accelerate innovation, and amplify impact in business education. The global organization has offices located in Tampa, Florida, USA; Amsterdam, the Netherlands; and Singapore. For more information, visit

© 2019, Tuskegee University