2020 Best & Brightest EMBAs: Decio Nascimento, Yale School of Management

Decio Nascimento

Yale School of Management

Age: 34

“I am an investor who is passionate about delivering superior performance on the path to create a better world for future generations.”

Hometown: Born in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and currently living in Greenwich, Connecticut

Family Members: My better half, Jennifer Nascimento, and our six-month-old daughter Samantha.

Fun fact about yourself: I was once an AMGA climbing instructor and a USPA skydiving coach. I also took my classmates on a skydiving trip on a few occasions.

Undergraduate School and Degree: London School of Economics / Fundação Getúlio Vargas – EESP, BSc in Economics

Where are you currently working? Richmond Global Compass, Chief Investment Officer

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles: Forbes Finance Council Member, University of Oxford / The Aspen Institute Leading with Purpose Member, 2020 EMBA Class Marshall (Valedictorian equivalent in terms of academic achievements)

Which academic or extracurricular achievement are you most proud of during business school? I was most proud of serving as a Teaching Assistant for Professor Roger Ibbotson. I have a passion for learning and sharing that knowledge with people. Demystifying finance is one of my favorite things to do, and I appreciated the opportunity to help my peers understand our coursework under his direction.

What achievement are you most proud of in your professional career? Early in my career, I was very fortunate to be given a chance to work and learn under one of the most successful fund managers in the world, Luis Stuhlberger. It ultimately prepared me to launch the first hedge fund integrating fundamental macro and sustainability analysis into its investment process.

Why did you choose this school’s executive MBA program? I chose Yale’s program because of its faculty and its mission.

What did you enjoy most about business school in general? The most enjoyable part is meeting and getting to know the people.

What is the biggest lesson you gained during your MBA and how did you apply it at work? There were too many lessons, as most of what we do is focused on being applicable “Monday morning” when we are back at work. One of the best lessons I have learned was about how the Commitment model that relies on hiring for cultural fit performs the best in terms of value maximization and longevity. At my company, we changed the way we screened for candidates and how we plan their careers, aiming to train and retain employees up to the point of retirement.

Give us a story during your time as an executive MBA on how you were able to juggle work, family, and education? My work requires that I travel fairly often. With coursework and a newborn, sometimes this can be challenging. I remember a class weekend that I had to leave class straight to the airport to catch an overnight flight to another country where I would be in for just a few days so I could be back to spend time with my wife and daughter. For all of this to work, course work needs to be done at any chance you get. That means, among other places, airplanes, trains, and waiting rooms.

What advice would you give to a student looking to enter an executive MBA program? Definitely do it, it is a great experience, and you will forge friendships you’ll carry for the rest of your lives. Also, ‘mise en place.’ I can’t stress enough how much organization is vital to achieving your goal without unwanted stress.

What is the biggest myth about going back to school? The MBA program is very long. Getting into the program, I believed that two years was a long road ahead. But time flies by, and while the weeks are long, the months are short.

What was your biggest regret in business school? I wish was able to spend more time with my classmates, especially near graduation, but due to COVID-19 and the ensuing pandemic, we remained home for classes in the last portion of our final semester.

Which MBA classmate do you most admire? The 2020 Yale EMBA class is a very distinctive group and I cannot speak highly enough of all the work that gets done by the selection team before we step foot in the classroom. Among a large group of admirable classmates, I must say that I admire Jason Mangus most. Jason was born to high school dropout, teenage parents and was homeless for a brief period when his biological father abandoned his mother, ensuring a long period of financial struggles. Jason became a father himself when he was sixteen years old. Despite the circumstances, he finished high school. Ten days after graduation, he got married to the mother of his child and went to work as a construction worker in northern Indiana, having his second child the same year. Eventually, Jason joined the Army, where he was encouraged to become an Officer. He completed his ROTC training and undergraduate education at the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University with a double major in Finance and Accounting, all while serving in the Army and working a full-time job. Before graduating at the top of his class as a National Distinguished Military Graduate and National Distinguished Military Student for the Army, he had had his third child.

After college, Jason became a CPA and went to work for Ernst and Young while serving as an Officer in the Reserves and pursuing a law degree. More recently, he became one of the youngest Vice Presidents in his healthcare company’s history. There, he helps acquire outpatient facilities and structure joint ventures and holds a second appointment, where he is responsible for operations in the Nashville market. I met Jason when we joined the Yale EMBA in 2018. Through our Friday evening workout sessions (he has also been an amateur bodybuilder, although by looking at him, you would not guess “amateur”), I got to learn more about him and forge a friendship that I will cherish for the rest of our lives. Jason is still happily married to his high school sweetheart and has four kids.

“I knew I wanted to go to business school when…I learned that business schools were offering a sustainability track. In today’s world, you cannot ignore the impact of sustainability if you are a long-term investor.”

What is your ultimate long-term professional goal? I want to build a successful business that provides excellent service for our clients, happy and fulfilling lives to our employees, and creates a better world for the larger society and its future generations.

In one sentence, how would you like your peers to remember you? I would like them to remember me as someone that was always there to help where I could and loved to share a laugh.

What are the top two items on your bucket list? Since the birth of my daughter and the subsequent pandemic, my bucket list has changed tremendously. Right now, the top two items would simply be sharing a meal with friends and family at a restaurant with a view and going to the movies with my wife.

What made Decio such an invaluable addition to the class of 2020?

“It is always a little disconcerting as a teacher to discover that a student is equally or more adept at the topic area that you are teaching. Decio’s experience at the forefront of sustainable investing practices placed him firmly in that category. Yet his humility and insatiable curiosity ensured that he always listened and engaged, was always eager to learn different perspectives from faculty and peers regardless of his experience and knowledge on a topic. Decio has very much been an embodiment of the Yale School of Management Mission: to educate leaders in business and society.”

Todd Cort
Lecturer in Sustainability, Yale School of Management and Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies
Faculty Co-Director, Yale Center for Business and Environment
Faculty Co-Director, Yale Initiative on Sustainable Finance
Faculty Director, Executive MBA Sustainability Curriculum

“Decio Nascimento aptly illustrates the diversity and global nature of Yale’s EMBA program. Decio has worked and has degrees from Brazil and London, and is now Chief Investment Officer at Richmond Global Compass, a New York hedge fund manager focused upon sustainability. Decio was a star student in my Investor class, and the next year became a TA to help the incoming class through the course. With his extensive investment experience, one might think that Decio would take Yale’s well-regarded asset management track, but instead, Decio broadened his background by studying the increasingly important area of sustainability. As Class Marshall, Decio excelled in all aspects of Yale’s curriculum. On a personal note, Decio and his wife had their first child during the program.”

Roger G. Ibbotson
Professor in the Practice Emeritus of Finance
Yale School of Management

DON’T MISS: THE FULL LIST OF THE TOP 100 BEST & BRIGHTEST EXECUTIVE MBAS OF 2020