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Release: April 21, 2000

UI Tippie College of Business honors McLeod

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The University of Iowa Henry B. Tippie College of Business has named Clark E. McLeod as the recipient of the 1999 Oscar C. Schmidt Iowa Business Leadership Award. McLeod is chairman, chief executive officer and a director of McLeodUSA Incorporated in Cedar Rapids. The Tippie College of Business honored McLeod April 20 at a dinner and program at the Main Lounge of the Iowa Memorial Union.

The Iowa Business Leadership Award was established by the late C. Oscar Schmidt, president of the Cincinnati Butchers' Supply Company, who wanted to honor his father by recognizing an outstanding Iowa business executive. The award recognizes outstanding performance in the world of commerce in the belief that business leadership is essential to the economic progress of Iowa and the nation.

"Clark McLeod has led McLeodUSA to become one of the fastest growing telecommunications companies in the nation," said Gary Fethke, dean of the UI Tippie College of Business. "Through this phenomenal growth, he has helped to invigorate the high technology industry in the state of Iowa."

Clark E. McLeod founded McLeod, Inc. (now McLeodUSA Incorporated) in June 1991. McLeodUSA was recently listed for the first time in Forbes magazine's "Forbes 500" annual survey. McLeodUSA ranked 170th of all public companies based on market value at Dec. 31, 1999. It was also recognized as having the largest market value among all Iowa-based public companies.

McLeodUSA employs more than 8,500 people and has a market capitalization of nearly $10 billion. McLeodUSA is a fully integrated telecommunications company offering local and long distance service, Internet access, voice mail, paging, directory publishing, and fiber optic network construction.

Teleconnect, McLeod's previous business, was an Iowa-based long distance telecommunications company. Founding the company in January 1980, McLeod served as chairman and chief executive officer from that time until December 1988, when Teleconnect merged with SoutherNet and became Telecom*USA. From 1988 to August 1990, McLeod was president and vice chairman of Telecom*USA.

By 1990 Telecom*USA was America's fourth largest long distance telecommunications company with nearly 6,000 employees. MCI purchased Telecom*USA in August 1990 for $125 billion. At that time, McLeod, together with management, purchased the Teleconnect telephone equipment subsidiary and the Telecom*USA Publishing subsidiary from MCI.

McLeod assists in economic development efforts in Cedar Rapids and the state, and he oversees the McLeod Charitable Foundation.

Prior to entering the telecommunications field, McLeod was a math and science teacher and he maintains an active interest in education.

Past recipients of the award, first given in 1980, include: Stanley J. Bright, retired vice chairman of the board at MidAmerican Energy Company; William T. Kerr president and CEO of Meredith Corp.; Leonard Hadley, former chairman and CEO of Maytag, Corp.; and John Pappajohn, president of Equity Dynamics Inc.