For readers of Poets & Quants, the Eli Broad College of Business is well recognized. Despite the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, undergraduate and graduate students have been profiled all summer long on P&Q’s “Best and Brightest” and “MBAs to Watch” lists. Last month, two Broad Executive MBA students once again made an appearance as some of the best in the nation.
Jeff Larkin and Tammy Hannah from the Class of 2020 made the list of Best and Brightest EMBAs, marking the third consecutive year — and the fifth year since 2015 — that Broad EMBAs have been recognized.
Larkin began his professional experience as a corporate finance intern with Lear Corporation and has established a career there for almost nine years, currently serving as a director of financial planning and analysis in Southfield, Michigan. He was nominated by Lear as one of two scholarship recipients to attend the Broad EMBA program, and he’s hoping his degree will bring new opportunities within the company.
“It was a no-brainer to accept the nomination when I was approached,” Larkin said. “I had already worked with several colleagues who had completed the program from Lear and heard their testimonials about the value of both the program and the relationships that they developed with classmates to their futures both personally and professionally.”
MSU Executive MBA Director Greg Janicki reflected on Larkin as a student in the program. “Jeff was all we could have wanted in an EMBA student: thoughtful, caring, inquisitive and an extraordinary contributor,” he said. “From the first day of the program, Jeff worked to not only build his own capabilities but those of his team and cohort. As an expert in finance, Jeff brought his knowledge and insight to his study team and cohort in a generous and understanding manner.”
With a background in occupational therapy, Hannah has made a successful career for herself at the Origami Brain Injury Rehabilitation Center in Mason, Michigan. She worked her way up from occupational therapist, earning awards and taking on leadership roles along the way. Since 2004, Hannah has served on the executive board of Origami, where she is now president and CEO.
Hannah was attracted to the collaborative nature of the Broad EMBA program to further her leadership skills. “In addition to the great reputation and diverse group of professionals who graduate from the program, I valued the integrated management emphasis, which was the primary reason I chose this program,” she said. “Embracing a team approach and recognizing the power of collaboration as well as cross-functional learning is what every successful executive needs to do.”
Kara Tripi, assistant director of the Executive MBA program, spoke on her experience with Hannah in the program. “Over the course of her 20-month academic journey, Tammy has been a true collaborator with her Executive MBA cohort,” she said. “Her genuine and thoughtful approach to team dynamics has yielded her the highest respect from her classmates. Furthermore, Tammy’s experience as an executive-level manager is demonstrated in her excellent results in the classroom.”
Although Larkin and Hannah were honored to receive this recognition, both made note of their classmates as well. “I don’t view this nomination as a personal achievement — this would not have been possible without my Team 13 cohort,” Larkin said. “We, as a group, committed to trying to get the most possible out of our EMBA experience, and this honor represents the results of that effort.”
Hannah added, “I had the incredible honor to be surrounded with many ‘best and brightest’ classmates throughout my Broad program experience, so to be nominated and recognized in this way is very meaningful,” she said. “My success is rooted in the great people that I was fortunate to have on this journey with me. I will be forever grateful.”