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Trey Lewis

Assistant Professor
2100 Pamplin (0233)
880 West Campus Drive
Blacksburg, VA 24061

Academic Interests

Entrepreneurial Action among nascent entrepreneurs; Employee Recruitment in early stage firms


  • PhD, Strategic Management, Entrepreneurship & Organizations, University of Tennessee, 2021
  • M.Ed., Human Resource Development, James Madison University, 2006
  • B.B.A., Human Resource Management, James Madison University, 2003


As entrepreneurship scholar, Trey is most drawn to research questions that address who becomes successful in the startup process, and the reasons for those outcomes. Specifically, he studies the actions that nascent (aspiring) entrepreneurs take (or avoid), why they do so, and the implications of these decisions for success in launching and building their firms. To date, his work has appeared in the Journal of Business Venturing Insights and in the Frontiers of Entrepreneurship Research.

Prior to entering the doctoral program, Lewis’ work within higher education spans almost 15 years in areas including academic advising, multicultural affairs, diversity education, and career services.  Most recently, Lewis served as the Executive Director of the Career Development Center at the University of Louisville and is credited with reimagining the work of career services and synergizing efforts around this initiative.  These professional experiences have also influenced his secondary research interest in understanding how entrepreneurs/entrepreneurial firms attract new employees to compete with established firms.  Trey Lewis is also a proud member of the PhD Project, which is supported by KPMG.

Selected Publications

Lewis, T., Hechavarría, D. M., Williams, D. W., & Cardon, M. S. (2024). Doing the right things at the right times: The role of temporal enactment in venture outcome attainment. Journal of Business Venturing39(1), 106344.

Engel, Y., Lewis, T., Cardon, M. S., & Hentschel, T. (2022). Signaling diversity debt: Startup gender composition and the gender gap in joiners’ interest. Academy of Management Journal, in press.

Lewis, T., & Cardon, M. S. (2020). The magnetic value of entrepreneurial passion for potential employees. Journal of Business Venturing Insights14, e00193.

Outside links