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Ron Poff

Assistant Department Head
  • Associate Professor of Practice
  • Interim Director, Business Leadership Center (BLC)
2082 Pamplin (0233)
880 West Campus Drive
Blacksburg, VA 24061

Academic Area(s)

Foundations of Business - First Year Experience (FYE), Entrepreneurship, Innovation, International Business, Marketing, Strategy 


  • M.S., Southern New Hampshire University  – Marketing, 2016
  • Graduate Certificate, University of Virginia – eMarketing, 2012
  • B.S., University of Phoenix – Business Management, 2003


Ron has over 25 years of new product development and international business development experience including strong global marketing, purchasing and operations management skills. Prior to joining Virginia Tech full time in August 2019, Ron served as Industry Director and Director of Global Marketing for Mar-Bal, Inc., the leading integrated compounder and molder of thermoset composites. Based in Blacksburg at Mar-Bal’s Global Marketing Office, Ron was responsible for corporate marketing activities including communications, brand development and product management. In addition, Ron lead the global sales, new business development and strategic acquisitions within Mar-Bal’s proprietary product lines and key OEM accounts in electrical, construction, industrial and rail markets.

Prior to joining Mar-Bal in 2008, Ron led global sourcing activities in support of new product development and innovation at Pfizer, Spectrum Brands and Newell-Rubbermaid. Serving as an entrepreneur and small business owner, Ron is the Co-Founder and Advising Partner for The PRIME Factory, a marketing and public relations agency, based in Blacksburg at The Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center. Over the past 5 years, Ron has served as a Professional Vice-President and Secretary on the National Council for Pi Sigma Epsilon (PSE), the only national co-ed professional fraternity in the fields of sales, marketing and management; since 2019, he has served on the Advisory Board for the Business Leadership Center at the Pamplin School of Business. He is also member of Rotary International, Sales Marketing Executives International (SMEI) and the Academy of Management.

In February 2017, Mr. Poff was recognized as a Distinguished Marketing Sales Award (DMSA) honoree by the Sales and Marketing Executives (SME) organization in Cleveland.

From August 2017 until July 2019, Ron served as an Adjunct Instructor at Virginia Tech in the Department of Management where he taught an introductory business course in management and courses in entrepreneurship in the Pamplin School of Business. He was recognized in April 2018, by the Division of Student Affairs, as a ‘Favorite Faculty’ nominee.

Ron holds an M.S. in Marketing from Southern New Hampshire University, a Graduate Certificate in eMarketing from The University of Virginia and a B.S. in Business Management from University of Phoenix. Ron is a veteran of the US Navy and Reserves (1989-1999). 

A Roanoke, Virginia native, Ron currently resides in Blacksburg.


In addition to various departmental and college level service roles, here are the University service areas: 

  • 2023 - Visiting Professor - Xidian University, XIan China with the XDU-VT Partnership 
  • Innovate Living Learning Community - Virginia Tech - Leadership Council, 2021 - Present
  • Center for Educational Networks and Impacts (CENI) - Virginia Tech, Committee Member, '21 - Present
  • Creativity and Innovation (C+I) - Virginia Tech - '20 - Present
  • Delta Sigma Pi (DSP) - Zeta Upsilon Chapter - Chapter Advisor, May '20-Present
  • Society for Human Resource Management - Virginia Tech Chapter, Chapter Advisor, May '20 - Present

Volunteer Experience

  • Pi Sigma Epsilon (PSE) - National Council, 2014-Present
    • Executive Vice-President: 2023 - Present
    • National Treasurer: 2021-2023
    • National Secretary: 2018-2021 and 2015-2016
    • Professional Vice-President: 2014-2015 and 2016-2018
  • Pamplin Business Leadership Center - Board of Advisors, 2019-Present


  • 2023 - Ut Prosim Award, Innovate Living Learning Community
  • 2022 - Excellence in Teaching, Pamplin College of Business 
  • 2022 - Excellence in Teaching, Department of Management
  • 2022 - Ut Prosim Award, Innovate Living Learning Community
  • 2022 - Finalist, University Sporn Award for Excellence in Teaching
  • 2021 - Excellence in Teaching, Department of Management
  • 2021 - Faculty Advisor of The Year (Nominee), Student Organization Leadership (SOL)
  • 2021 - Favorite Faculty Award (Nominee), Virginia Tech Student Affairs, April 2021
  • 2020 - Finalist, University Sporn Award for Excellence in Teaching
  • 2018 – Favorite Faculty (nominated), Division of Student Affairs – Virginia Tech
  • 2017 - Distinguished Marketing and Sales Award (DMSA) – Sales and Marketing Executives International (SMEI), Cleveland
  • 2014 - Best Technical Paper Presentation – Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE), Thermoset Division
  • 2013 - SoMe Impact Award - Social Media Best Practices

Other Professional Development – Licenses and Certifications

  • 2023 - Leading for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in Higher Education - University of Michigan
  • 2021 - Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the Workplace - University of South Florida
  • 2019 - Design Thinking for Innovation, University of Virginia
  • 2019 – Positional Recruiting for Organizations, Carew International
  • 2019 – Excellence in Sales Leadership, Carew International
  • 2000 – Institute for Supply Chain Management (ISM), Certified Purchasing Manager (CPM)

Industry and Career Experience and Practice

Strategy, Entrepreneurship, Innovation, International Business, Industrial Relations, Leadership, Management Coaching, Ethics, Marketing, Sales, Operations Management, Purchasing, Supply Chain

Social Media