May 23, 2016

Brian Shea Delivers Graduate Commencement Address at St. John's University

Vice chairman and CEO, Investment Services, encourages 2016 graduates of St. John's Peter J. Tobin College of Business to lead mission-focused lives and careers of service

Brian Shea at SJU

Introducing himself as one of five Shea family children who are proud holders of St. John's University degrees, BNY Mellon Vice Chairman and CEO of Investment Services Brian Shea encouraged students receiving graduate business degrees from St. John's to focus on worthwhile missions and achieve them by leading lives and careers of service.

A member of St. John's Board of Trustees and the Board of St. John’s University’s Institute for Catholic Schools, Shea addressed more than 1,000 graduates, faculty, family and friends at the Carnesecca Arena on St. John’s campus in Queens, New York as commencement speaker during 2016 graduation ceremonies for the university’s Peter J. Tobin College of Business.

Saying that he learned growing up in a large, supportive family that being part of a larger unit is more than the individual, and that serving others is more important than serving yourself, Shea challenged the 2016 graduates to become business leaders committed to serving worthwhile missions.  "You'll find yourself in service to others," Shea said, adding that the best way to achieve their mission is to combine a focus on service with hard work, teamwork, ethics, continuous improvement, a willingness to embrace change and a knack for staying grounded.

Receiving a Doctor of Commercial Science degree during the graduation ceremony from University President Conrado “Bobby” Gempesaw, PhD, Shea quipped that all the mothers in his boyhood New York City neighborhood of Jackson Heights, secretly hoped their children would grow up to be a doctor or priest. "I can feel my mother smiling down on us tonight, thinking after all these years that we finally have a Doctor in the family!"