Jim MarchbankCentral Methodist University Board of Trustees member Jim Marchbank was recently honored with a national award for his service and involvement with nonprofit organizations.

The God and Service Award for Adults is given by the General Commission on United Methodist Men. It honors distinguished volunteer service by adults in ministry to young people through service to the United Methodist Church, as well as one or more of select national youth agencies, including Boy Scouts of America, Girl Scouts of the U.S.A., Camp Fire USA, and American Heritage Girls.

Eligibility for the award includes a minimum of five years in church services, as well as five years of service to a youth agency.

Marchbank, a St. Louis native, was presented the award at a dinner held the evening before the National Scout Jamboree, which was held in West Virginia in near the end of July. He is currently the chair of the Religious Relations Committee for the greater St. Louis Scout Council, and serves on their board.

“I recently gave a presentation to the National Youth Leadership Training Program for young scout leaders,” he said. “That was my second time to address this group, and perhaps that had something to do with the award.”

In addition to the scouts, Marchbank also is a trustee for CMU. Though he is not an alumnus of the University, he said he stands by Central due to its excellence and reputation.

“CMU is about quality – that’s the first word that comes to mind when I think about the school,” he said. “I’m also Methodist, so I feel connected.”

Marchbank has given two Commencement addresses for CMU, and has served on the board for approximately five years.

“CMU does a really good job, and that’s very important to me,” he said. “It’s a wonderful institution – from the faculty to the staff. The focus is on the students, and on excellence.”  

In 2008, Marchbank successfully sold Available Communications, Inc. – a company he founded in 1981. He then pursued a second career in academe, with a focus in marketing, management, business strategy, and human resources.

“I started teaching because I think anyone successful in business is a teacher at heart,” he said.

He began his academic career in 2008 with Fontbonne University in St. Louis. Since, he has taught Master of Business Administration (MBA) coursework in Bangkok, Thailand; Bucharest, Romania; Bratislava, Slovakia; Beijing, China; and Prague, Czech Republic. He also has given guest lectures in Athens, Greece, and taught in Europe for four spring terms. 

Currently, Marchbank teaches business strategy and management for Webster University in St. Louis. In 2017, he was nominated for the Webster University Kemper for Excellence in Teaching award.

In addition to being an entrepreneur, he worked for Exxon in Marketing and management at various locations in the southeastern United States. His experience with international paper included headquarters assignments in New York City, as well as managing a Plastics Division in Illinois. 

Marchbank received a Bachelor of Science degree in marketing from Southwest Missouri State University (Springfield), and a MBA from Columbia University (New York City), with a concentration in management. 

He has been married to his wife, Elizabeth, for 48 years, and they have two children who live in Atlanta and California.