2024 Winner

Lance BrownLance Brown MBA '16

Chief Executive Officer, Rhino Medical Supply, Inc.
Founding Partner, Swype Fast

Lance Brown's professional and philanthropic journey is a compelling narrative of dedication, humility, and impactful leadership. Hailing from Spartanburg, South Carolina, Lance's academic foundation was laid at the University of South Carolina, where his commitment to excellence became evident. This commitment deepened at Duke University's Fuqua School of Business, where he earned his MBA, equipping him with the skills to navigate and excel in the complex business world.

Lance's career began at Wells Fargo in 2005, where his innate ability to lead swiftly advanced him through the ranks to significant management and leadership roles, culminating in a promotion to Senior Market Sales Manager. He guided a team of outside sales representatives across the Southeast in this capacity. 

In 2017, after a fulfilling tenure at Wells Fargo, Lance embarked on an entrepreneurial journey, co-founding Swype Fast, a national merchant services company. His entrepreneurial spirit continued to thrive, establishing Rhino Medical Supply in early 2020. In response to a crucial need during a global health crisis, Lance's leadership at Rhino has propelled the brand Ceros to become one of the country's fastest-growing hypodermic product lines, underscoring his dedication to addressing essential healthcare needs.

Beyond his professional achievements, Lance is deeply committed to community service and leadership. He is an active member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc., where he serves on the Zeta Epsilon Advisory Team, offering guidance and support to the next generation. His dedication to community improvement extends to his roles as a board member for Serve & Connect and D.I.G (Dreams, Imagination, and Gifts). Through these organizations, Lance contributes to creating positive change and empowering communities.

He lives in Columbia, South Carolina, with his wife, Krishnan, and their children, Larkin and Knox. He balances his impactful career with the joys of family life.

Outside of his professional and philanthropic endeavors, Lance's life is filled with personal passions that include sports photography, cheering for his Duke Blue Devils and South Carolina Gamecocks, caddying for his 9-year-old son, Knox, and cheering on his daughter, Larkin, during her gymnastic meets. These hobbies balance his busy life, allowing him to cherish moments of personal joy and family time.

What impact has your Fuqua experience had on your career/life?

My time at Fuqua was nothing short of transformational, profoundly impacting my career and personal life. The tools, friendships, and knowledge I gained there are invaluable and guide me daily. It taught me to tackle business challenges with a collaborative and strategic mindset, which has been instrumental in navigating the complexities of my professional journey.

Professionally or personally, what are you excited about right now?

Professionally, I'm thrilled about the growth and recognition of our Ceros hypodermic brand. Competing in an industry where larger entities dominate, witnessing our brand carve out a significant presence is incredibly rewarding and a testament to our team's hard work and innovation.

What does this Fuqua award mean to you?

It's an honor that I will carry with me, serving as a constant motivation to live up to the ideals of giving back, leading with purpose, and making impactful contributions wherever possible.



Year Recipients
2022-23 Namita Thapar MBA '01
2021-22 Beth Bafford '06, MBA '12

Kelly J. Clark MBA '07

Kathy Baughman McLeod MBA '12

2019-20 Warren Osborn MBA '99
Jessica Yinka Thomas MBA '04  

TJ Abrams MBA '09

Brian Hamilton MBA '90

2017-18 Allison Fansler MBA '06
Terry Tucker MBA '98
 2016-17 Tom Mitchell MBA '07
Peter Warlick MBA '94
 2015-16 Tim Jeffries MBA '03
 2014-15 Alex Michalko MBA '10
Jeff Jablow MBA '05
 2013-14 John Troy MBA '09 
 2012-13  Paula Alexander MBA '98
 2011-12  Paul Sansone MBA '92