BU Alum Ready to Lead at the Next Level
Cedric Menchion knows the secret to professional longevity.
“Work is easy for me because I love what I do,” says the BU alumnus, who’s amassed more than 20 years of experience in the financial field.
For the last eight years, he’s served in Texas public schools, starting as treasurer at Austin Independent School District, then moving to controller at Killeen ISD.
September 2020 marks a career milestone for Menchion, 55, named the Chief Financial Officer for Dripping Springs ISD near Austin.
“It’s a natural progression for me,” he says of his new executive leadership role, reminiscing on his trek to this mountain-top moment.
Raised in a full Florida household, Menchion -- one of 12 siblings -- recalls his family’s humble, hard-working roots. “My parents didn’t have the means to send us all to college, but they instilled the importance of a solid high school education and how it could propel you forward.”
Diploma in hand, Menchion left his home in Panama City Beach and took his talents to the Air Force, which eventually landed him at Offutt in Bellevue, Nebraska. On base, he completed general education classes through the local college -- a decision he calls a “no brainer.” (Translation: He was destined to be a Bruin.)
After the Air Force, Menchion worked for Kiewit Construction and Mutual of Omaha, learning about accounting and investments firsthand while finishing his BU bachelor’s degree in management and economics.
“Bellevue University has always been at the tip of the spear,” says the ‘94 graduate. “At the time I attended it was the only college in the area to offer professional studies that catered to individuals who worked full time.”
Fun fact: Above and beyond his day job, Menchion moonlights at a local Texas college. He credits BU economics professor Dr. Judd Patton for inspiring him to teach the same subject today to the next generation.
“I remember how enthusiastic and influential my instructors were at Bellevue,” Menchion says. “Teaching for me is a way to give back.”
He touts Bellevue University as foundational to his career trajectory, which has skyrocketed over the years. While progressing through the ranks, he also added to his educational arsenal, including an MBA and M.S. in Finance and Economics as well as several professional certifications.
“I’ve been entrusted over the years to manage a lot of public funds, billion dollar portfolios,” says Menchion, reflecting on his various roles and the importance of up-to-date training. “I want the public to know, wherever I’m working, how seriously I take my role as a fiduciary. I can’t change the tax rate, but I can ensure the money is allocated correctly.”
Leading with transparency and trust, Menchion strives to offer independence and flexibility for employees as well as continuity in management so that his teams can thrive and, ideally, outlast his tenure.
While it’s bittersweet to leave coworkers who feel like family, Menchion is looking ahead to his new post with excitement, eager to lead at the next level.
“It will be an easy transition for me,” he says, commenting on his synergy with the superintendent and board of trustees of his new district.
Along with his love for finance and economics, Menchion finds deeper fulfilment knowing that his work supports a significant mission: developing an educated citizenry.
“The bedrock of our survival as a country is our next generation,” he says. “My goal is to do the best I can to ensure teachers and students get the tools and resources they need to succeed.”
The CFO credits his own education and the people he’s met along the way for helping him progress on his path. “I couldn’t have arrived where I am alone,” he says.
For others seeking a satisfying career with staying power, Menchion suggests it boils down to two essential ingredients: people and passion.
“There will always be good people to help you achieve your goals,” he says. “Find out what you love to do; it will be easier for you to excel.”