Southeast Missouri State University

Photo of Dr. James Stapleton, PhD

James Stapleton 

Executive Director
(573) 651-2010

Southeast Missouri State University
One University Plaza 
Cape Girardeau, MO 63701

Dr. James L. Stapleton has been the Executive Director of the Douglas C. Greene Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Southeast Missouri State University since 2009, following three years as the Director of the Center for Entrepreneurial Studies. He is an Associate Professor of Management in the Harrison College of Business.

Through his leadership, the CIE has grown into one of the most comprehensive entrepreneurship-focused centers in the Midwest, including the creation of an innovative cross-campus initiative that is transforming the entrepreneurial potential of the University, and development of a nationally recognized microenterprise development program that has assisted in the creation of over 300 microbusinesses. The CIE recently partnered with the Delta Regional Authority to implement a capacity-building initiative to create a network of 150 microenterprise development organizations to expand services provided to underserved entrepreneurs in the distressed rural areas of the eight-state region.

Dr. Stapleton’s primary research interests include business establishment dynamics impact on job creation, microenterprise development, rural innovation and entrepreneurial development, group dynamics, entrepreneurship teaching and capacity building, and online learning. He has authored articles in various refereed publications and received multiple research awards.

Dr. Stapleton has received external support for grant-funded research and sponsored programs of nearly $2 million. He serves as an advisor and on boards of several local, state, and national organizations including the Delta Regional Authority, Delta Grass Roots Caucus, University Economic Development Association, and Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation’s Global Entrepreneurship Week. He was named an Emerging Business Educator in 2008 by the National Business Education Association, and supports several local charities including Big Brothers Big Sisters, Junior Achievement, and a variety of animal shelters.