Arriving at a 24-year milestone as a financial executive is no easy feat, but one filled with tenacity, forward-thinking, and building strong relationships.

bank cfo sitting at desk

To double alumnus Dan Sutton ’08, ’95, it’s about serving as a role model, permeating honesty throughout organizational culture to uphold ethical intentions for the members the business serves.

Sutton lives and breathes this mission. Since 1999, he’s made strides in his career, serving the last six years as Kemba Credit Union’s president/chief executive officer. Leading a financial institution comprised of 130,000 members and nearly 300 employees, Sutton says he draws energy from all facets of his job—the work he accomplishes, the members he serves, and the employees he works alongside.

According to Sutton, Kemba diligently strives to enrich the financial lives of its members, employees, and the communities it serves. It embodies a culture of care and concern for each other, and for others. His most transformative experience here was having the privilege to lead through the COVID-19 Pandemic, where he witnessed a profound level of service and care from his staff.

“I was able to sit in the front row and witness our staff bravely serve our members and care for each other, Sutton says. “I have never been more proud of our Kemba family than I was during those very difficult times.”

An advocate for guiding and coaching, it was only natural that he pursued an advanced program to lead with values, integrity, and social responsibility.

“The Mount’s MSOL program offered me an opportunity to sharpen leadership skills that I already had, but most importantly, it helped me identify leadership areas that were not as strong or developed in order to be successful in a leadership capacity at the highest level,” he says.

When faced with difficult business decisions, Dan often draws upon his MSOL experience, giving him the confidence to make tough calls to face change head-on when his back is against the wall.

Most importantly, it taught me to embrace change, whether it’s changes in technology, consumer/employee demands, rules and regulations, competition, and much more,” Sutton says.

In fact, the best leadership training Sutton says he received over the years was from his coaches. His former MSJ Football Coach John Pont, a previous member of the Mount, made a recognizable impact on the person and leader who he is today.

“Coach Pont taught me how to work hard and get my hands dirty,” Sutton says. “He taught me how to effectively lead others and create followers. Coach Pont was inspirational, charismatic, caring, and the poster child of a servant leader. He treated our football team as a family. He cared about our individual success on the field and in the classroom more than he cared about winning football games.”

As for steering the business towards a successful future, Sutton continues to put this care and concern at the forefront of Kemba’s service to meet business objectives.

“My broad vision for a successful future for Kemba Credit Union is for all individuals and small businesses to think of us first for all their financial needs,” Sutton says.


Looking for Flexible Program Options? Serve Forward with the School of Business

Are you a working professional who is interested in developing your passion and expertise? At the graduate level, our MBA and MSOL programs offer market-relevant courses in business as well as interpersonal and leadership skills. We even offer flexible programs to fit your busy schedule. Visit our School of Business page to learn about our flexible offerings.