David Girodat, BBA '85, MSF '92
David serves as president and CEO of Fifth Third Bank (Eastern Michigan), which has $5 billion in assets. He is responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the bank’s four main businesses: Commercial Banking, Branch Banking, Consumer Lending and Investment Advisors. David serves on the boards of Business Leaders of Michigan, the Detroit Regional Chamber and New Detroit. He also is a member of the New Detroit Finance Committee, the Business Leaders of Michigan Audit Committee, The United Way Cabinet, Henry Ford Macomb Hospital’s Philanthropy Council, and the Ambassador Club of Henry Ford Macomb Hospital. He also serves as co-chair of the Walsh College Scholarship Golf Classic.
David was the recipient of the 2013 Walsh College Distinguished Alumni Award.
Interview with David:
How did Walsh College influence you?
“I don’t think I realized how much Walsh influenced me as a person and business leader until years after I graduated. Now, each day I make decisions around business strategies, execution, and people. When I reflect, I can tie a lot of it back to my days at Walsh. I feel a lot of my personal behaviors, of which are conservative in nature, align with some of the professors from my time at Walsh.”
What struggles did you experience, and how did you get through them?
“As a student I was struggling with the time commitment of being a full time student and a part time worker. I gave a lot of consideration to reversing my process: Get a full time job and go to school part time. Somewhat driven by the personal needs around money, the best decision I made was to hold the course, put more effort in school, treat it as the full time job. Things did not necessarily get easier, but it ended up being the right decision.
Now as an alum, many years later, life challenges are much different. Work/life balance becomes something that many professionals must deal with. It is easy to be consumed in your career and forget about important people, like family, and other things, such as your own health. Personally, I am working on this one. Learning to prioritize, being inclusive of and supporting of family, and spending a little more time on the treadmill.”
What is the best business advice you have received?
“Treat everyone with respect. You never know who you are talking to or who is listening to you. Give respect and receive it in return.”
What advice would you give a new alum or current student?
“Have a mentor in your life, someone that you can trust and talk to regarding all life decisions. It is good to have a voice of reason around you. I have had a couple in my career and would not have been able to achieve personal goals without them.”
What is your greatest accomplishment?
“My greatest accomplishment in my personal life is the obvious: having a great spouse and three fantastic children. In business, I don’t think I have had my greatest moment yet. I have done some good things for my organization and the community, but I like to think, the greatest things are yet to come.”
Please join Walsh College in applauding David Girodat in his continued success by adding your comments below.
To nominate an alumnus to applaud, contact Duc Abrahamson, Alumni & Student Relations Manager at (248) 823-1298.