Chancellor Robert Khayat (right) presents Larry Cox and his mother, Ruth Cox Pogue, with a certificate for the 1848 Society.

OXFORD, Miss. – The chair of the Risk Management and Insurance Program in the School of Business Administration at the University of Mississippi has honored his parents with a bequest that will create an endowment to support faculty in his department.

Larry Cox, who also holds the Robertson Chair of Insurance, has established the C. Robert and Ruth A. Cox Endowment in Risk Management and Insurance with a testamentary gift of $50,000.

"My father spent most of his career in the life insurance business, both of my children graduated from Ole Miss – with my daughter earning her degree in risk management and insurance – and I’ve taught here for over 13 years, so this place is very special to our family," Cox said. "I wanted to honor my parents and also support the efforts of Steve Collins and Robert Forster, members of the Ole Miss Insurance Advisory Board, who have been encouraging estate gifts by our board members and alumni. If Ole Miss is to remain prominent in the field of risk management and insurance for future decades, then private support is critical."

The fund will support and expand the program by enabling the recruitment and retention of outstanding faculty in the field.

"Dr. Larry Cox has provided exceptional leadership for the Risk Management and Insurance Program, building a legacy of outstanding educational opportunities for our students," said Ken Cyree, dean of the business school. "Larry has shown tireless devotion through his service to the RMI program and to insurance professionals throughout the region. This generous gift reflects the dedication and commitment of Dr. Cox to the field of risk management and insurance and to the University of Mississippi. We are profoundly grateful for all he has done and continues to do for us."

Before joining the Ole Miss family, Cox served on the faculties of the University of Georgia and New Mexico State University. Since he began teaching at Ole Miss, the number of students majoring in risk management and insurance has grown from 19 to 122, and endowments supporting the program have increased nearly sevenfold. He has served as president of the Risk Theory Society, the American Risk and Insurance Association, and the Southern Risk and Insurance Association.

Cox’s gift is part of the university’s MomentUM campaign, a four year initiative to raise $200 million. The MomentUM campaign, which ends in December 2008, already has raised more than $180 million for scholarships, graduate fellowships, faculty support, a basketball practice facility, residential colleges and a new law school on the Oxford campus. Also in the plans are a cancer center at the UM Medical Center and a new building to house the School of Pharmacy, both in Jackson.

For more information on planning a gift to the University of Mississippi, visit http://www.umf.olemiss.edu/planning/plannedgifts.php.


By Sonia Thompson