Gary Price Jacob Jarvis

Spend just a few minutes scrolling through Gary Price’s social media feed and it’s easy to see what he’s passionate about: accounting, diversity and inclusion and Ohio State. A lot of Ohio State.

There are retweets highlighting the university’s upcoming sesquicentennial. Scroll. A Lantern article spotlighting an underrepresented student group at Ohio State. Scroll. And a profile of an alumni couple who met at Fisher.

Scroll a little more and the content gets even more personal. Photos of Price, his son Brett and former football coach Urban Meyer at a 2019 charity 5K for Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Scroll. Photos and words of encouragement to Jacob Jarvis and Noah Studebaker, local brothers fighting the disease for which the 5K was created. Scroll. Retweets from Ohio State’s commencement ceremony. Scroll. A photo of Price delivering the keynote at the 2019 Master of Accounting Pre-Commencement ceremony in May.

While it’s only a snapshot into part of Price’s life, @garyprice_osu provides a glimpse into just how much pride the 1983 graduate has for Ohio State and the lengths he’s willing to go to support not only students but even strangers-turned-friends.

“Accounting might be for me.”

To this day, Price remembers walking into the office of his best friend’s brother at Ernst & Whinney as a teenager in the 1970s and thinking “accounting might be for me.” He applied to Ohio State, was accepted and before long was sitting in classrooms led by faculty legends including Ray Stevens, Tom Burns and Rick Murdock.

Stevens was particularly instrumental in helping Price prepare for an internship with Price Waterhouse in his hometown of Cleveland during his junior year, he said.

“He took time to mentor me on what it meant to be a professional, that it was more than being book smart or having the technical knowledge,” Price said. “You had to have professional polish, good communication skills and know how to interact at meetings.”

Gary Price
Gary Price (BSBA '83)

“What’s amazing is those things haven’t changed. Today’s students are smarter than any of us ever were, and they are very comfortable leading in a more digital world. But they still need the so-called soft skills, the emotional intelligence, empathy and understanding of people that distinguish them from others in the industry.”

Another thing that hasn’t changed since the early 1980s?

Price’s connection with the company that would eventually become PwC. In 1983, he took a full-time position in the audit practice. In 1995, he was admitted as a partner. As he ascended throughout the company, new positions took him to Atlanta and New York, where he currently resides.

His time in Georgia was particularly beneficial. From 1999 through 2006, he worked directly with Delta Air Lines as it navigated the uncertainty created by the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks and the company’s subsequent Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing in 2005.

“It was an incredible time filled with incredible learning with a tremendous company,” Price said. “Experiencing that was a little like the MBA I never got.”

In 2006, he was named PwC’s market managing partner in Greater Atlanta (Georgia, Alabama and Tennessee), and in 2013 Price was appointed to his current role — partner affairs leader and chief administrative officer. He is responsible for all partner-related matters, including benefits and wealth creation/preservation, partner development and administration, and firm governance, including board matters and partner admissions. As a member of the firm’s U.S. leadership team, he is also responsible for enabling PwC’s digital journey.

“I went to work as a young auditor in 1983 at Price Waterhouse not knowing that I’d still be here 36 years later,” he said. “People ask me how I’ve been able to do it for so long, but every five or six years, I’ve done something totally different at PwC. The variation of work throughout our industry is really only limited by one’s imagination.”

“Lives changed, big and small.”

Inspired by the impact that professors such as Stevens had on him as a student, Price has maintained a focus on helping others advance in the profession. He is an ardent supporter of PwC’s initiatives aimed at increasing opportunities for women and diverse talent at the firm, and he is a member of the Council for Economic Education’s board and executive committee.

Closer to his Ohio State home, Price is a frequent guest in accounting classes and a resource for students he’s met, connected with and mentored over the years.

“We are fortunate to have an alumnus of Gary’s caliber so dedicated to giving back to the profession’s future leaders,” said Brian Mittendorf, the Fisher Designated Professor in Accounting and former chair of the Department of Accounting and MIS.

“Despite his busy schedule, he is always willing to help our students and faculty. His eagerness to engage with our students on a personal level and encourage their academic, professional and personal growth exemplifies the best of leadership and what being a Buckeye is all about.”

Gary Price MAcc commencement
Gary Price delivers the keynote at the 2019 Master of Accounting (MAcc) Pre-Commencement ceremony.


Price’s legacy of engagement eventually led him to the MAcc Pre-Commencement keynote.

“It was an incredible honor,” Price said. “It was humbling to realize that I’d come full circle. I remember sitting in those seats with my future in my hands.”

As Price encouraged the Class of 2019 to make an impact in the lives of others, Chad Studebaker and his family — sitting in the audience that day — knew these were more than empty words.

Five years ago, as Ohio State marched toward a football national championship, Price, along with the rest of the country, learned of the family’s battle with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD), particularly Jacob Jarvis’ fight. Jacob was featured by national media outlets, sat in on in-season press conferences and became a de-facto member of the football program, even scoring a touchdown in Ohio State’s 2017 Spring Game.

While Meyer and the football team helped Jacob shine a light on DMD and raise money for research, Price wanted to support the family. He sent a letter to Meyer sharing his desire to help. A few days later, Price connected with Studebaker (BS ’94) and the families have been friends ever since. In fact, Jacob, Noah, their mother Tracy, and Studebaker have traveled to New York three times to spend time with Price, his wife Mary Ellen and children Ian (BS ’17) and Brett. They have also spent time with Price’s two other children, Brenna and Brandon.

Gary Price Jarvis family
From left, Jacob Jarvis, Chad Studebaker, Brett Price,
Noah Studebaker and Gary Price.

“We’ve built a great friendship, and all because of our Ohio State connection,” Studebaker said. “We really appreciate everything Gary and Mary Ellen have done for our family. Those trips are experiences my boys might not have otherwise had.”

The Prices’ generosity has also provided Jacob, who lost the ability to walk four years ago, with freedom. The family helped the Studebakers purchase a wheelchair-accessible van.

“Jacob can go places now, whether that’s across the country or to the grocery store,” Studebaker said. “It’s made a huge difference in Jacob’s happiness.”

“We’re so thankful and we recognize what Gary has done for our family, not only financially, but also the time invested in caring for others. It’s inspired us to do more for others. And that’s the point — to step up and show the value of what it means to give to others.”

Just a few weeks after delivering the MAcc PreCommencement address, Price and his family flew to Columbus to participate in the inaugural Run Out Duchenne 5K, a race organized by Studebaker to raise money and awareness for DMD research.

Studebaker was inspired by seeing the Prices in attendance, but not surprised. He remembered what Price had told the Class of 2019 about personal legacy, how it’s defined and how it’s achieved:

“Legacy is defined by lives changed, big and small. Legacy is built through humility. The humility to understand that we are all capable of making a positive difference in the world by making a difference for someone else.”


“Legacy is defined by lives changed, big and small. Legacy is built through humility. The humility to understand that we are all capable of making a positive difference in the world by making a difference for someone else.”

Gary Price (BSBA ’83)Partner Affairs Leader and Chief Administrative Officer, PwC