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Voices of Alumni

John Carnesale, PKE 126

After a successful post undergraduate career, with both institutional and entrepreneurial experience, I had the desire to study business applications from a contemporary academic perspective. Already a CEO, I had some trepidation entering an MBA program. It’s likely you did as well. I was impressed though, after a thorough investigation of many programs, to discover that the Presidents and Key Executive MBA program for students at Pepperdine University’s Graziadio Business School is very distinctive, challenging, and uniquely structured. I’m confident you benefited, as did I, from all that Graziadio has to offer business professionals.

To those of us who have invested in Graziadio, it’s a one-of-a-kind business school.

The boardroom environment and cohort members, of similar business successes, create a learning environment that far exceeded my expectations. The Socratic method of learning, with a peer level that rivals any boardroom in the United States, is a rewarding learning format tied to a distinct and exceptionally insightful curriculum. The professor’s credentials are superior -- each teaching the most informed academic applications for real world businesses. The instructors are experts in finance, marketing, strategy, and business practices providing in-depth learning of organizational behaviors. Additionally, there is an international component to Graziadio that provides immediate access to international markets, businesses, and partners that can be utilized immediately upon graduation. Do you realize how unique these qualities are in a business school?

The direct contact with 16 cohort members allowed for a collaboration, at the presidential and “C” executive level, providing insights into an array of diverse businesses. I had the unique opportunity to be exposed to The Pain Center of Arizona, the largest pain management center in the State of Arizona, led by one of the doctors in my graduating class. With Dr. Siwek’s desire to grow from an outpatient clinical base practice to a hospital based group, and through my experience as the CEO of Taylor Financial, we were able to acquire a hospital to transition his business to the next level of medical care.

The new hospital also allowed him to join forces with PKE group member, Dr. Nate Alderson, former director of Clinical Sciences and Interventional Medicine at Cedars-Sinai, who dreamed of furthering his medical field research by acquiring Hope Research with Dr. Siwek. Over half of the other additional Graziadio PKE members from the class provided key elements for the development of this collaboration including additional financing, staffing services, IT services, strategy training, and medical device development. The other members of the class provided insightful bi-monthly business commentary and additional collaborations.

My experience with the Graziadio Business School has proven to be invaluable both for my business development and as an investment in my actual business relationships and career. Will you join me in annually supporting the school that has made a difference in the lives of so many?


John Carnesale
Taylor Financial LLC

P.S. Your gift matters! To give online visit: https://give.pepperdine.edu/graziadio/programs.