Academy of Accounting Historians


Thomas J. Burns Biographical Research Award


The Academy of Accounting Historians annually honors an individual as the recipient of the Thomas J. Burns Biographical Research Award.  The Award is given for outstanding biographical research in the discipline of accountancy.  The award includes a plaque and a financial award.  Dr. Thomas J. Burns, for whom the award is named, was a long-time professor at Ohio State University and a past president of the Academy of Accounting Historians.

Self nominations are acceptable.  Each nomination should be accompanied by a paragraph or more detailing why the nominee should be a candidate for the award.  The award can be for a single publication or for a lifetime of biographical work.


Deadline for Nominations: June 1, 2016

Send nominations to: Academy Executive Committee at

Congratulations to the 2015 Recipient!
        Tonya K. Flesher (University of Mississippi)

Tonya K. Flesher is the Arthur Andersen Professor of Accountancy in the Patterson School of Accountancy at the University of Mississippi.  She is a past president of the Academy of Accounting Historians and former Dean of the School of Accountancy.  She was the first female to serve as Dean at the University of Mississippi. She serves as director of the Tax History Research Center.  The Mississippi Society of CPAs named her the Outstanding Educator in 1995.  In 2003, Tonya was given the Elsie M. Hood Outstanding Teacher Award, which is the top teaching award on campus.  She also received another campus-wide award, the Burlington Northern Faculty Achievement Award for Outstanding Teaching and Scholarship in 1986. The students in the School of Accountancy have elected her Outstanding Teacher five times.  She was named Outstanding Researcher in the School of Accountancy in five different years.

Flesher is the author of several books and over 100 articles. She has had biographical publications over the years in The Accounting Review, AHJ, and other journals. During her Academy presidency in 1993, she hosted the Academy‚Äôs first Biography Conference.  Every paper presented at the conference was a biography of an accountant.  Her own dissertation was a biography, and she has served as a committee member on two biographical dissertations. 

Her husband, Dale L. Flesher, is a past recipient of the Burns Biographical Research Award.


Past recipients of the Award:

 2014 Massimo Sargiacomo, University of Pescara, Stefania Servalli, University of Bergamo and Paolo Andrei, University of Parma
 2013  Stephen P. Walker, University of Edinburgh
 2012  No Award Presented
 2011  Edward Coffman, Virginia Commonwealth University
 2010  Laurie Barfitt, Western New Mexico University and Dan Jensen, The Ohio State University
 2009  E. Richard Criscione, Morehead State University
 2008  Stephen A. Zeff, Rice University
 2007  Donald E. Tidrick, Northern Illinois University
 2006  Richard G. Vangermeersch, University of Rhode Island
 2005  Dale L. Flesher, University of Mississippi


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