Faith and Finance
Mark Linsz ('86) believes in working with people. Throughout his career as an executive with Bank of America and in creating his own company, My Next Season, Linsz has focused on the need for integrity and for cooperation in accomplishing big goals.
“Something I learned at Biola was the need for people to work together and to be a team,” said Linsz, who began his finance career in the late 1980s with Chicago Research and Trading, at the time one of the largest trading firms in the world.
Chicago Research and Trading was later bought out by Bank of America, and Linsz rose to be one of the top risk executives and later treasurer for the company. During his time as treasurer, Linsz had to navigate through tough financial situations for both the company and its clients during 2008’s economic crisis. He was also responsible for raising capital for Bank of America so that it could withstand the stress of financial instability. Linsz aligned the business values he had learned at Biola while advising investors during that tumultuous time.
“Having the trust of investors and having investors know that what you said was the truth was key,” said Linsz, who credits Biola’s emphasis on integrity and faith integration as “a tremendous help to me.”
Linsz’s job with Bank of America took him all over the world: Chicago, Hong Kong, London, New York and more. After 27 years working with the company, he retired in 2014 and co-founded My Next Season, a company designed to help executives transition from their positions to retirement while still doing meaningful work. One of the ways My Next Season accomplishes this is by partnering with not- for-profits across America.
“We’ve got a tremendous talent pool that’s going to be retiring from corporate America in the next 15 years,” Linsz said. “Helping executives find their purpose, and then also helping not-for-profits with this talent pool has just been incredibly exciting.”
Linsz continues to use what his Biola professors taught him about integrating his faith into every aspect of his life, including the business world. He puts the lessons into practice by placing executives into positions that will use their strengths and knowledge to help the community around them. The company itself donates 20 percent of its revenue to their partnered not-for-profits.
“Having people with integrity, and having people with biblical principles, and having Christians who will be a light out there, is probably one of things that I’m most passionate about,” Linsz said. “Conviction and courage are incredibly important in the workplace. I think the lessons I learned at Biola really played into the way I thought of that in the workplace.”