McRae “Mac” C. Banks graduated from Virginia Tech in 1972 with a Bachelor’s of Arts degree and would later receive his Ph.D. degree as well from Virginia Tech in 1987. His business career began in 1982 when he founded a small business institute and taught a course in Small Business Consulting at Radford University. During his time at Radford, he founded the Center for Small Business Consulting, Training and Development. He left Radford in 1987 to serve as the director of the Agribusiness Institute (ABI), which he co-founded at Mississippi State University. In 1995, he left the University of Mississippi to assume a dean-equivalent position as the head of the Department of Management at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI). While at WPI, he founded the Collaborative for Entrepreneurship & Innovation. Banks left Worcester in 2011 and joined the UNCG faculty as the Dean of the Bryan School of Business & Economics. He was also given the title of Virginia Batte Phillips Professor of Entrepreneurship and Strategy.