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Former Alcoa Executive to Head Business Ethics at DU Beard Institute

Bill O’Rourke, former vice president of sustainability and environment, health and safety at Alcoa, is serving as director of business ethics at the Beard Institute in the Duquesne University Palumbo-Donahue School of Business. In this position, O’Rourke spearheads business ethics outreach programs.

“With Bill’s commitment to business ethics, he’s a perfect fit at the Beard Institute,” said Jim Byrne, executive director of the institute. “Bill’s first-hand experience with different business issues will help him to connect with our students. And with Bill’s stellar reputation, he will certainly advance the Beard Institute’s mission in the business community.”

O’Rourke brings 36 years of experience at Alcoa with him into his new post at Duquesne.

“I’ve been blessed with wonderful experiences during my career at Alcoa,” said O’Rourke, who led the company’s sustainability initiatives. “I want to share my experiences with Duquesne’s students and faculty in hopes of advancing the mission of the business school.”

O’Rourke began at Alcoa in 1975 as a patent attorney and also served as vice president of global business services and chief information officer, leading the strategic direction and integration of Alcoa’s global information systems and security.

As president of Alcoa Russia, he was responsible for the substantial manufacturing assets Alcoa acquired in Samara and Belaya Kalitva in the Russian Federation. During the three years he was in Russia, he led efforts to upgrade the facilities to Alcoa’s standards and oversaw an investment program that exceeded $500 million. His other leadership roles with Alcoa included vice president of audit, vice president of procurement and head of corporate staff services, corporate patent counsel and assistant general counsel.

O’Rourke currently serves on the board of the Alcoa Foundation, and he is a visiting fellow at the Wheatley Institution at Brigham Young University. He earned a juris doctor degree from Duquesne University and his bachelor’s degree in business administration from John Carroll University.

Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. Duquesne, a campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, has been nationally recognized for its academic programs, community service and commitment to sustainability. Follow Duquesne University on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.