24 May 2021

Harvard Business School Professors Win Wyss Awards for Excellence in Mentoring Doctoral Students

Robert Huckman, Elizabeth Keenan, Adi Sunderam, Lakshmi Ramarjan
Photo: Rose Lincoln

Two Harvard Business School (HBS) faculty members, Professor Lakshmi Ramarajan and Professor Robert Huckman, will each receive one of the 14th annual Wyss Awards for Excellence in Mentoring for their work with students in the Doctoral Programs.

Additionally, senior faculty member Adi Sunderam, a professor of business administration in the Finance Unit and a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, and junior faculty member Elizabeth Keenan, an assistant professor of business administration in the Marketing Unit, have been selected as the two runners-up based on the outstanding nominations they received.

The winners and runners-up were selected from a pool of 21 faculty nominees. In keeping with tradition, the main advisors of the selection committee chairs and award winners of the past five years were excluded from consideration.

Ramarajan is the Anna Spangler Nelson and Thomas C. Nelson Associate Professor of Business Administration in the Organizational Behavior Unit at Harvard Business School. Her research examines the management and consequences of identities in organizations.

Professor Lakshmi Ramarajan

“Lakshmi has been an amazing mentor for the past three years, as she spent an extraordinary amount of time working hands-on with her students,” one student commented on Ramarajan. “She strikes the perfect balance between treating her students as co-authors and thought partners while also providing training and mentorship. Lakshmi creates a learning environment in which students feel safe asking questions and voicing their opinions. She also genuinely cares about her students as people and frequently checks in on both work and life.”

Professor Robert Huckman

Huckman is the Albert J. Weatherhead III Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School, the faculty chair of the HBS Health Care Initiative, and the unit head for Technology and Operations Management.

“Rob has always been very supportive but this year he went above and beyond, making sure that we were doing well and had everything we needed to be productive in the remote world,” one of Huckman’s students noted. “He has made himself even more available this year, thinking through research ideas and motivating me to be productive, while at the same time reminding me to be kind to myself. He helped me recognize and accept some of the inevitable challenges of living and working during the pandemic.”

The Wyss Awards are named in honor of Hansjoerg Wyss (MBA 1965) who, in 2004, established the Hansjoerg Wyss Endowment for Doctoral Education. The Wyss Endowment supports a broad range of efforts to strengthen the HBS Doctoral Programs, including fellowships and stipends for doctoral students, increased support for field research, new doctoral course development, teaching skills training, and the renovation of doctoral facilities on campus.


Mark Cautela

About Harvard Business School

Founded in 1908 as part of Harvard University, Harvard Business School is located on a 40-acre campus in Boston. Its faculty of more than 250 offers full-time programs leading to the MBA and PhD degrees, as well as more than 175 Executive Education programs, and Harvard Business School Online, the School’s digital learning platform. For more than a century, faculty have drawn on their research, their experience in working with organizations worldwide, and their passion for teaching, to educate leaders who make a difference in the world. The School and its curriculum attract the boldest thinkers and the most collaborative learners who will go on to shape the practice of business and entrepreneurship around the globe.