Pay it forward
Paul Anderson (MSIA 1963) | Chicago, Illinois
Following a decades-long career at the global management and technology consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton, Paul Anderson (MSIA 1963) settled into retirement in 2004. He has given generously of his time and support to the business school in the years since his graduation from Carnegie Mellon University. For this donor spotlight, Anderson shares his fondness for his alma mater and his commitment to giving back.
When I applied for admission to GSIA (as it was then called) in the spring of 1961, I was serving in the U.S. Army in Texas. As I recall, my balance sheet at that time consisted of the clothes on my back, an old Ford, and not much else. I applied to Harvard and GSIA and was accepted at both. Harvard told me they would loan me all the money I needed to attend. GSIA said they would give me all the money I needed to attend — a free ride, full boat. My decision did not take long.
While I was sort of aware that GSIA was trying to create a new model of graduate business education as an alternative to Harvard’s established case study approach — a model based on analytic and quantitative approaches to problem solving and decision-making — I did not fully appreciate the significance of this fact until I arrived in Pittsburgh. Because of the then still experimental and innovative nature of the GSIA program, a remarkable group of faculty who wanted to be part of this experiment came together in Pittsburgh for those few years: names like Simon, Cooper, Kuehn, Bach, March, Leavitt, Cyert — the list goes on — and of course the inimitable Leland Hazard.
What a team!
Before very long, I realized that this new approach to graduate business education was an almost perfect match to my abilities and proclivities. So I received what for me was absolutely the best kind of preparation for my future business career. But in addition,
I received something that I had not anticipated — a real education. My mind was opened to literature, to history, to different ways of thinking about the world. What a gift I had been given!
The rest is history. On graduating, I joined the management consulting firm of Booz Allen Hamilton and, except for a one-year stint as a White House Fellow in 1968–69, spent my entire 40+ year career there. My Booz Allen life took me all over the world — 10 years in Paris, the last three years working in Japan — with most of my client experience focused on dealing with issues facing the global automotive industry as it experienced one massive transition after another. Throughout this period, the lessons that I learned at GSIA never became obsolete. ―
Kimberly Brannon (MSIA 1998) Director, Global Capabilities Strategic Initiative,
Global Business Services Raytheon | Washington, D.C.
Kimberly Brannon (MSIA 1998) is dedicated to giving back. Since her graduation, she’s contributed generously to the Tepper School.
“I believe in Tepper — that education and having that opportunity,” she explained. “I’ve made it a point to be consistent because of the impact Tepper has had on me and my career.”
Today, Brannon serves as Director of the Global Capabilities Strategic Initiative for Global Business Services at Raytheon, where she leads teams in implementing strategy regarding shared services across the corporation.
“The work that I’m doing now involves solving enterprise types of problems,” she said. “A big part of [how Tepper helped me] was learning fundamental business skills. The other part was the ability to think from an enterprise perspective.”
“Management Game, for example, helped me understand the connection among sales, operations, production, finance, etc. Really getting that perspective has helped me in both my consulting work and the work I’ve been doing at Raytheon to fully understand that I’m not just a silo here, and how what I’m doing connects to the other work across the organization.”
Raised overseas but based in Delaware, Brannon pursued her degree in math at Penn State University. She then spent five years with GE Aerospace as an IT professional working with its
“I figured out very early in my career that I enjoyed that interface between IT and business, but I needed the business language,” she said. “I realized that I wanted to get an MBA to gain that business background.”
Looking for a top-tier school, she turned to Carnegie Mellon’s Tepper School.
“The ability to get an MBA with a quantitative emphasis, with a mathematical, engineering approach, appealed to my interests,” she said.
Degree in hand, Brannon headed toward management consulting, rounding out her experience in industries from financial services to chemicals in the IT strategy practice of A.T. Kearney. But while she loved solving problems, she found she was looking for more permanence and the chance to see her work come to fruition. She took a position at Raytheon, where for the past 16 years she has continued to rise.
Brannon remains connected to the Tepper community by attending events with her Washington, D.C., alumni chapter and staying in touch with friends from her class.
In giving, one of her special passions is providing more opportunities for women to succeed in leadership roles. And she encourages others to take advantage of matching gift opportunities at their organizations.
“I’m really excited that I work for a company that also values giving back to education,” said Brannon. “I always make sure that when I make my contribution, I also put in the request at Raytheon to match my gift — as well as at my husband’s company, which also matches. It’s a great benefit and opportunity to make your gift even more significant.”
Giving helps her ensure that others experience a thrill she feels fortunate to have known.
A Lasting Legacy
Evan Segal (BSIM 1982, MSIA 1983) | New York City
Evan Segal (BSIM 1982, MSIA 1983) feels privileged to carry on the legacy of his father, both in his career and in his life. To honor this special man, the Tepper School alumnus established and supports both the Jerome J. Segal Undergraduate Scholarship and the Jerome J. Segal Graduate Scholarship for four students each year attending his alma mater.
He gives back to provide others the same opportunities he gained through his education, a value his father instilled. The scholarships emphasize academic performance, innovation, and leadership.
“My dad always believed in education,” Segal said, “something that no one could ever take away from you.”
“At Tepper,” he continued, “I gained a broad and valuable array of functional skills, problem-solving processes, and decision-making experience, along with the ability to use these in time-sensitive situations with varying degrees of information.”
Segal, a Pittsburgh native, grew up spending weekends and summers working at his family’s firm, Dormont Manufacturing. Set on a business career, he enrolled at Carnegie Mellon’s Tepper School for its excellent reputation. He was proud to follow his grandfather and uncle to a university with a “high caliber of students and faculty.” Within a few years of graduation, he took the helm of the family business. Building on his father’s invention, the flexible gas appliance connector, Segal (with his father’s valued guidance) grew the company from a regional business into a global manufacturing firm. “Tepper really was a springboard,” he explained. “You have potential for a higher trajectory with that knowledge and network behind you.”
And he was happy to draw on that network. “I actually hired my best friend from GSIA [Stacy Brovitz (MSIA 1983)] to help me run the business,” he pointed out. “We’d had all these ideas while we were working in teams at GSIA. We would say, ‘Wouldn’t it be great if we worked together in the real world?’ And we actually made that happen.”
After the sale of the business in 2006, Segal went on to serve as CFO of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, on the White House Innovation and Information Policy Task Force, and on the Federal CFO Council. He authored “From Local to Global: Smart Management Lessons to Grow Your Business” and has made numerous media appearances.
He stays active investing in the future as both a venture capitalist and philanthropist. Through the family foundation, the Segals hold particular interest in furthering the Pittsburgh community with an emphasis on human kindness and social justice, as well as social entrepreneurship. Segal’s venture investments emphasize late angel/early seed Pittsburgh startups.
Segal has served as Executive-in-Residence at the Tepper School. He continues to look for ways to stay connected, including showing corporate leaders “the great things going on here.” In the spirit of his father, Segal is committed to mentoring: In fact, he returns to CMU each year to personally meet with his scholarship recipients.
“My dad’s leadership style was really wonderful because he cared about people,” Segal said. “I want to stay in touch. I’m glad to help others make connections and think about career opportunities.” ―