Alumni Spotlight: Adrian Johnson, MBA ’97
Adrian Johnson, MBA ’97, credits his experience at Loyola for readying him to take the next step in his career. “It was a confidence builder,” Johnson said. He mentioned the program’s rigor and exposure to critical thinking skills as the preparation he needed. “When I graduated, I thought I could do anything. I thought I possessed the skillset to make it happen. Two months after I graduated, I started a new job.”
The job that Adrian is referring to is with the Municipal Employees Credit Union of Baltimore, Inc. (MECU), where he has worked since July 1997. With over 38 years of experience in the financial industry, Adrian is currently the senior vice president and chief financial officer at MECU. In 2014, the Baltimore Business Journal recognized him as being one of eight top CFOs in the region for their contributions to their companies.
Johnson is a veteran mentor in Sellinger’s Alumni Mentoring Program. This is a way for him to give back in the midst of a successful career. “I enjoy the opportunity to share my wisdom and practical experiences that I gained over all these years,” Johnson said, referring to the insights that expert alumni in their respective field have to offer Loyola MBA students. He finds it rewarding to connect with rising professionals as there was a time when Johnson himself sought out a mentor’s perspective on his career in finance. Now, Johnson is the role of giving out advice. “I have experiences to share, so if someone is willing to listen, I am willing to help.”
Beyond job skills, Johnson says what he values most about his Loyola education was the Jesuit perspective of servant leadership. For him, this particular style of leadership is all about helping others through performance, teamwork, and building networks. With this in mind, Johnson has some advice for other mentors and protégés:
“As you go through your day-to-day, step back and look at the bigger picture. You both have insights to offer each other. I always say, I have stories to tell – stories that match what they're going through. I’m a baby boomer, and many current students are millennials. On the surface we may have very different views of the world, but our perspectives are valuable for helping each other achieve our goals.”
The Sellinger Alumni Mentoring Program pairs a current or former MBA student with a seasoned professional MBA graduate for a six-month period of insight and guidance. Mentoring gives Sellinger alumni the opportunity to stay connected to the University and counsel a student or alum, while protégés gain personal career consulting.
Those interested in participating as a mentor or a protégé for 2017 can register online at alumni.loyola.edu/mentoring. The application deadline is April 14, 2017. The program begins with an orientation on June 8, 2017, at Loyola’s Timonium Graduate Center.