Whitton Executive Series Features Fraud Expert Walt Pavlo Jr.

October 23, 2019


  • The Whitton Executive Series is sponsored by Elaine Whitton Davis and the College of Business Administration.
  • Walt Pavlo Jr. consults, writes and speaks on topics ranging from white collar crime to criminal justice.
  • The Whitton Executive Series will be held Nov. 14 at 6:30 p.m. in Carroll Hall’s Whitton Auditorium.

ROCK HILL, SOUTH CAROLINA – A Nov. 14 Whitton Executive Series event at Winthrop University will feature a nationally recognized expert on white collar crime and criminal justice.

Walt Pavlo Jr. will provide the keynote address for the Whitton Executive Series scheduled Nov. 14 at 6:30 p.m. in Vivian M. Carroll Hall’s Whitton Auditorium.

Pavlo, a renowned speaker and author, lectures at business schools and Fortune 500 companies across the country on business ethics and white collar crime issues. In 2007, Pavlo co-authored a popular book, “Stolen Without A Gun” (co-authored with Bloomberg reporter Neil Weinberg), based on his experience as a senior manager in a large telecommunications company where he was at the center of a large accounting fraud.  In 2001, Pavlo pleaded guilty to wire fraud, money laundering and obstruction of justice, and served two years in a federal prison. He now speaks nationwide about his experience and former life of crime. Pavlo’s keynote address will go in depth about how he became involved in a $6 million embezzlement scheme as senior manager at MCI Telecommunications (later became WorldCom).

Pavlo is a contributor for Forbes where he writes on fraud. His work has earned him appearances on “American Greed” and in documentary films, including “White Collar Convicts: Life On The Inside” and “(Dis)Honesty.” He earned his bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering from West Virginia University and his MBA in finance from Mercer University.  He is also a Journalist Law School Fellow at Loyola Law School.

P.N. Saksena, dean of Winthrop’s College of Business Administration and professor of accounting, said Pavlo’s message is relevant today because of the importance of teaching business students about ethics and the consequences of corporate crime.

“There is no substitute for integrity; behave ethically in every situation,” Saksena said of what he hopes students and other attendees will take away from Pavlo’s experience.

The fraud expert joins a list of top business professionals featured during the annual Whitton Executive Series, a symposium series designed for business leaders and the business community. Sponsored by Elaine Whitton Davis ’73 and the College of Business Administration, the business series launched in 2012. 

Davis said Pavlo’s unique perspective is one of the driving purposes of the Whitton Executive Series: to expose business leaders in the surrounding community to powerful speakers with a deep knowledge of distinctive topics.

“I strongly believe that Winthrop is an asset to the community, and especially the business community,” she said. ”Having a platform where business people are able to discuss certain topics like corporate pressures, competition, corporate ethics and personal ethics is essential and impactful,” Davis added. 

Saksena said the business series is a dynamic way to “attract leaders” to campus and “raises the profile of the College of Business Administration and of Winthrop University.”
Register online for the Whitton event, which is free and open to the public. A 5:30 p.m. reception will be held in the Macfeat House, which is adjacent to Carroll Hall.

For more information, contact Celeste Tiller ’01, ’04, the College of Business Administration’s director of external relations and the Institute of Management, at tillerc@winthrop.edu or 803/323-2504.

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