125 Influential People and Ideas
Boisi

Wharton First

1881 The pioneering vision of Joseph Wharton created the world’s first collegiate business school.

Visionary Investment Banker

Geoffrey T. Boisi, WG’71

In 1978, only seven years after earning his Wharton MBA, Geoffrey Boisi became the youngest partner of Goldman, Sachs & Co. As Management Committee partner, the young banker became responsible for the firm’s worldwide investment banking activities. He then became co-founder, chairman, and CEO of The Beacon Group, LLC, a private equity and advisory firm headquartered in New York City.

Boisi served as co-chair with the late Mickey Tarnopol, W’58, vice chairman of the Investment Banking Division of Bear, Stearns & Co., Inc, on Wharton’s Campaign for Sustained Leadership, helping the School surpass its original $350 million campaign goal to raise $445.7 million.

Boisi made a celebrated deal in 2000 when he sold Beacon for $500 million to Chase Manhattan Bank, which soon merged with J.P. Morgan & Co. Boisi served as vice chairman of investment banking for the new JP Morgan Chase, envisioning a world of giant business enterprises — “corporate city-states,” he called them — and reconfiguring the company as a combination investment and commercial bank that would serve them with a leaner, more productive staff.

In 2002 JP Morgan Chase suffered heavy losses in Enron, Global Crossings, and other bad investments that preceded Boisi’s arrival. The one-time wunderkind then shocked Wall Street with a sudden early retirement amid a management shake-up by Chairman and CEO William Harrison.

A bold and blunt-spoken leader, Boisi has thrown himself into charitable pursuits with characteristic vigor. A Knight of Malta and devout Catholic, Boisi serves as trustee for the Papal Foundation and Joseph P. Kennedy Enterprises. In addition, Boisi is a co-founder and chair of The National Mentoring Partnership and is a director of Communities in Schools.

Throughout his career, he has continued his service to Wharton. Boisi served as co-chair with the late Mickey Tarnopol, W’58, vice chairman of the Investment Banking Division of Bear, Stearns & Co., Inc, on Wharton’s Campaign for Sustained Leadership, helping the School surpass its original $350 million campaign goal to raise $445.7 million. He and Tarnopol were both honored with Wharton Dean’s Medals in 2003. Boisi currently serves on Wharton’s Board of Overseers.