Welcome to our CaringBridge website. We are using it to keep family and friends updated in one place. You may be family, a recent or lifetime friend or colleague, a former student, or just met him for the first time in one of his economics courses this semester; whichever the case, you have probably felt his impact on your life.
Randy grew up in the southwest suburbs of Chicago, thus his unique street-wise personality, yes, a little rough and tough. Randy earned a B.S., Economics, Northern Illinois University, 1982, M.S., Economics, 1984, and Ph.D., Economics, 1986, University of Kentucky. His first faculty position landed him at East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina. The university and new economics department became his lifetime career, now over 35 years. His wife of 24 years, Monica (Sullivan) Parker displaced each of his passions! Together they fell in love with formula 1 racing, gourmet cooking, wine collecting, and english springer spaniels. Randy already loved hunting upland birds, handicapping thoroughbred horse racing, sipping bourbon (must have been his life in Kentucky) and Monica fell in love with these same interests, well, not the bourbon.
Randy doesn't do anything halfway. If he was hunting, you could be assured he knew everything about the sport, this attitude transcends everything he does. It's one of the reasons he's such a superior professor. You see, he knows an important, but often overlooked element as an educator; an authentic interest and commitment to the major, a truthful educator-student relationship, combined with filling the student with a vision for their true potential creates infinite possibilities for their future. He has always been ready to speak "hard truths" to his students. Often these conversations were a first for the student. Dr. Parker's words were almost always taken seriously. Those who adopt his academic, career and life advice would tell you it was a turning point in the trajectory of their life. This is Randy's devoted purpose and an attitude shared by Monica as a nurse educator.
This sounds a little serious, but if you know Randy, what fun he is! There’s never a dull moment, no matter the time or place. Monica says, "Randy told her the three things he loved the most was formula 1 racing, gambling on horses and being a great lover, but you'll have two figure out their order".
We hope you'll make this website your own by sharing a favorite story about Randy, Dr. Parker, The Professor, or Professor Money Pants.
We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting.