Business Magazines Laud NIU Alumni

Dana Herra, '01

Top business magazines gave high marks to Northern Illinois University alumni who have built successful careers on the foundation of their NIU degree.


Brent Brodeski

Brent R. Brodeski, a two-time alumnus of the NIU College of Business (finance ’88, M.B.A. ’91), was recently named to Forbes Magazine’s list of America’s Top Wealth Advisors. Brodeski, the CEO of Savant Capital, was ranked fiftieth on the magazine’s list of the top 100 wealth managers in the country.

The 557 people on the annual Crain’s Chicago Business list of Who’s Who in Chicago Business includes a dozen NIU alumni in nine different industries.

The industry on the list with the most NIU influence is real estate, where Daniel L. Goodwin (M.S.Ed. ’73, chairman and CEO of Inland Real Estate Group), Charles Huzenis (sociology ’74, principal at JRG Capital Partners LLC), and Michael W. Reschke (accountancy ’77, chairman and CEO of Prime Group Inc.) are ranked among Chicagoland’s top movers and shakers.

Two more graduates of NIU’s renowned accountancy program also landed on the Crain’s list: Stephen R. Ferrara (accountancy ’81, CEO of BDO USA LLP) in financial services and Russ Smyth (accountancy ’78, M.A.S. ’80, CEO of HAVI Group LP) in transportation.

Three different industries on the list include an alumnus of NIU’s political science program. Former NIU trustee Manuel “Manny” Sanchez (political science ’70, managing partner of Sanchez Daniels & Hoffman LLP) was named in law, Nick E. Rosa (political science ’73, managing director of Sandbox Industries) was named in technology, and Larry S. Boress (political science ’70, president and CEO of Midwest Business Group on Health and executive director of the National Association of Worksite Health Centers) was named in business organizations.

The health care industry list included two NIU alumni: Michael W. Englehart (history ’90, president and CEO of Presence Health) and Jeffrey S. Aronin (marketing ’89, chairman and CEO of Marathon Pharmaceuticals and Paragon Pharmaceuticals).

Also named to the Crain’s list is Paul Kahan (computer science ’86, executive chef and owner of One Off Hospitality) in the food industry and Gina Berndt (art ’79, managing director and principal of Perkins & Will Inc.) in the architecture industry.

“Congratulations to these outstanding alumni for their well-deserved recognition,” said Alberta Solfisburg, director of development at the NIU Foundation. “Accolades like these remind us of the remarkable impact thousands of NIU alumni make every day in their professions.”


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