By By Steven Syre, Boston Globe
The money management business is stuffed to the gills with Ivy League talent. Rob Manning, the chief executive of MFS Investment Management, came from a very different place.
Manning is going back there this weekend — to the University of Massachusetts Lowell — to deliver the commencement address, receive an honorary degree (along with his wife and co-alum, Donna), and make a gift of several million dollars to the college.
I was drawn to that story for a couple of reasons. For one, there is a seemingly endless line of people waiting to give millions to Harvard, and a few other already wealthy schools that have produced so much of the local talent in the investment business. UMass Lowell is not the kind of place that often finds its way onto that short list.
It’s impossible to talk with Manning for more than two minutes about his alma mater and not hear his genuine appreciation for an education that got him where he is today, or at least got him started in that direction.