New CFO Returns to Alma Mater to Fix Finances
John Loyack has had a long career in business and finance since he graduated from King’s College in 1985. He has lived in various places across the country, held more executive-level positions than most people can aspire to hold and has now returned to where his journey began, as the vice president for business affairs and treasurer of King’s College.
Loyack was born in Pittston, where much of his family still resides. He and his wife are high-school sweethearts who followed each other to King’s, graduating a year apart. He started out as an IT major, but switched to accounting after he took an interest in the field.
Loyack graduated from King’s with a bachelor’s degree in accounting, received an M.B.A. from LehighUniversity, and is a certified public accountant. His first job was at Price Waterhouse Cooper as an auditor. His time there gave him the experience of seeing the financial aspects of businesses, and this sparked the interest that set him on his career path.
From Price Waterhouse Cooper he worked through various companies and industries, making his way from finance to operations management. Ultimately Loyack filled the role of chief executive at several companies, a position which required a mix of all his prior expertise. Holding the top office in several companies gave him a lasting set of administrative skills.
Throughout his career Loyack has followed the corporate tendency to move around where the jobs are, living intermittently in Pennsylvania, Nebraska, New Mexico and Texas.
While he said that all of his jobs were pleasantly challenging, Loyack’s favorite time in his career may have been while he was chief financial officer at P&N Resources. He was involved with expanding the company from a small organization to a mid-sized utility. Loyack said it was a mix of fun and accomplishment, and it will always hold a place in his heart because it was the first time he had grown a business so successfully.
Although he has held many jobs, Loyack hopes to remain at King’s until his retirement. The Pittston native looks forward to settling with his wife, two daughters and son near his extended family. He is also excited to be of service to his alma mater.
“I’ve done the corporate thing to death at this stage,” Loyack said. “It was a good time for me personally to do something other than corporate, and based on where the College was financially, I could bring those skills here to the place I started.
Loyack hopes his experience in business will greatly benefit King’s at a time when the College is working to balance its budget. He has targeted three points that he believes will help King’s get back on track: managing the cost of operations, adjusting the way the College brands itself in order to be more marketable to potential students and changing the way King’s plans for the future.
Loyack will be examining all of King’s contracts to determine where it can save money on operations. He plans on looking at the best practices in the market and applying those practices to King’s. The College’s relationship with Sodexo, which includes bringing that company’s employees in-house, is one of the first areas that will help King’s save money.
Loyack also wants to change the way King’s plans for the future. In the past the College has focused on the year ahead without considering future needs or the long-term implications of decisions. Loyack wants to create a three-year standard for planning that should help King’s stay on track.
“I’ve been trying to take the experience I have with five-year planning and making sure that gets sprinkled into the process,” Loyack said.
He also wants to change the way King’s brands and markets itself to the world in order to make it more appealing to incoming students. He said King’s need a more “laser-focused” approach to differentiating itself from the competition. Although the campus has changed in the twenty years since he attended King’s, Loyack still sees the same nurturing culture alive in the College.
He believes this atmosphere helped shape him and his career, and that it is an incredibly valuable asset to students and should be a focus of King’s marketing.
“I don’t think I could have been as successful without that kind of environment to grow up in,” Loyack said.
Loyack repeated that he would love for this job to be the last thing he does in his career. Though he is not looking ahead to retirement just yet, he is excited to return to the King’s College community and his own family in Pittston.