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Ron Jackson

Shareholder, Saltmarsh, Cleaveland and Gund Certified Public Accountants and Consultants

The University of West Florida was a beautiful campus, with blooming azaleas everywhere. The campus was much quieter because UWF was more of a commuter school at the time, and I was one of the handful of students living on campus. Today, the campus is alive with activity.

What is your proudest career achievement and why?

I’m most proud of serving as president of our firm for 25 years and helping create a work environment that is recognized as superior by the young professionals who have worked at other larger firms. That environment has also facilitated movement to another generation of management rather than being forced to merge into a larger firm.

What stands out as your fondest memory while a student at UWF?

A few of the accounting department faculty were very good tennis players, so this was a way to relate to them outside the classroom. They loved the challenge of playing against students and it provided an excellent opportunity to be mentored outside the classroom. I met my future wife while at UWF and we spent a lot of time on the tennis courts as well.

As a mentor in the UWF College of Business Executive Mentor Program, what have you tried to instill in students and what have you learned from them?

I’ve tried to instill the values of honesty, integrity and hard work. Do the right thing, always, and be involved in the community to make it a better place for the next generation. From the students, I have learned how challenging it is to get started today in the business world. The students are trying to find a way to connect with others in their fields and to be successful.