Profiles of Excellence

Dr. Tony Lima is not your typical professor. True, he has degrees from Stanford (PhD), Harvard (MBA) and MIT (BS); and has lectured at Brandeis, Stanford and CSU East Bay before coming to CALMAT. Yes, he publishes economic research on applied topics as diverse as “Price and Quality in the California Wine Industry: An Empirical Investigation,"1 where he explored the relationship between a wine’s price and medals won at tasting competitions; to “Digitized Technology and Student Learning of Macroeconomics in the Short and Long Term: Caveat Emptor,"2 which compared student learning outcomes in a traditional classroom versus an online setting. Nevertheless, what sets Tony apart from other professors is his more than 30 years of industry experience as a manager, director and entrepreneur. He has been running Tony Lima Associates, his technology and strategy consulting business, longer than he has been teaching; and before that, he ran a software engineering business specializing in dBASE and Paradox for more than ten years.

“Economics and finance must be related to the real world,” explains Tony. His research, teaching and consulting business have focused on analyzing real world events using economic and financial tools. “Students learn best when they learn to crunch the numbers.” Tony’s classes, homework assignments and exams usually have a significant computational component, while his teaching style combines lectures interspersed with Q&A and lots of examples. He makes it a point to develop examples in class, showing students how to use tools like Excel.

When asked if he could give one piece of advice to students thinking about taking one of his classes (which include Corporate Finance, Macroeconomics, Statistics, Information Technology, Economics of IT, Business Valuation, and Investment Management), Tony chuckled, “brush up on your math (especially college algebra), try to learn the basics of Excel, and read (or reread) the first few chapters of a good accounting textbook.”

Most of all, what sets Tony apart from other professors is his ability provide rigorous instruction in an atmosphere that can only be described as lively and even entertaining. He truly embodies the core values of CALMAT: balancing academic excellence with technological know-how and business savvy. When asked about his recipe for success in the classroom Tony thoughtfully responded, “I really enjoy teaching especially when the class has many highly motivated and energetic students – just like CALMAT students!”

1 Lima, T. (2006, December). Price and quality in the california wine industry: an empirical investigation. Journal of Wine Economics, 1(2), 176-189.

2 Lima, T. and Maxwell, N. (2007, Spring). Digitized technology and student learning of macroeconomics in the short and long term: caveat emptor. Perspectives on Economic Education Research, 3(1), 32-52.