Walton College alum sets up $100,000 fund for student entrepreneurs at UA

by Talk Business & Politics staff (staff2@talkbusiness.net) 130 views 

A University of Arkansas alumna and her husband have donated $100,000 to start a fund supporting student entrepreneurial efforts within the UA’s Sam M. Walton College of Business.

The Janet Ryan Stegall and Bob Stegall Entrepreneurship Fund will go toward supporting faculty, programs and other resources, including facility support, according to the UA. Efforts will be concentrated in the university’s Office of Entrepreneurship and Innovation, led by associate vice provost for entrepreneurship, Carol Reeves.

The couple lives in Dallas, and Janet Ryan Stegall said she often works with entrepreneurs as managing director and private client adviser at U.S. Trust, Bank of America’s private wealth management division.

“I have a core belief that the United States was built from small businesses,” Stegall said in a UA press release. “Many of my clients did not come from great wealth but have created great wealth. The entrepreneurship journey often fosters a strong belief in giving back.”

The Stegalls both grew up in Little Rock. Bob Stegall said he is equally interested in small business thanks to his father, who was a small-business owner in Little Rock for over 30 years. The Southern Methodist University graduate is president and chief operating officer of WorkRecords, an entrepreneurial venture that offers multi-sided network platforms for the hourly labor workforce and the businesses they serve.

“Great innovation often comes from individuals and small companies,” he said. “We want to encourage future entrepreneurs to dream big.”

Bob Stegall graduated from Southern Methodist University and is now president and CEO of WorkRecords, a company that provides network platforms for the hourly labor workforce and its employers.

Jim Rankin, vice provost for research and economic development, said in the press release: “The University of Arkansas strives to be an economic development engine. This gift from the Stegalls is an important contribution that will help the university educate our next generation of entrepreneurs to lead us in economic development.”

Janet Ryan Stegall serves on the Dean’s Executive Advisory Board for the Walton College and co-chairs the college’s Campaign Arkansas committee.