After earning his BBA from Baruch College and an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, Lawrence (Larry) Zicklin began his professional career in the institutional sales department at Merrill Lynch. In 1969, after almost a decade at Merrill Lynch, he joined Neuberger Berman as a partner, becoming managing partner and chair of its executive committee in 1974. Following the firm's 1999 initial public offering, Zicklin retired from active management and became chair of Neuberger Berman’s board of directors, a capacity in which he served until 2003, when the firm was acquired by Lehman Brothers. He rejoined the board in 2009, following Lehman Brothers' bankruptcy and the employees' purchase of Neuberger Berman, and he now chairs the firm’s audit committee.
In his current board position at Neuberger Berman, he continues to shape a company that is well respected in its industry. He is also a director at BZL Biologics, a research company studying antibody-based therapeutics. Active philanthropically at many levels, Zicklin is a past president and former chair of the UJA-Federation of New York; current chair of the Baruch College Fund; chair of the advisory board of the RAND Center for Corporate Ethics, Law, and Governance; and a board member of the Center for Political Accountability.
Larry Zicklin’s wholehearted belief in the power of higher education—which he has called “the great leveler”—combined with his conviction that he owes his successful career to the education he received at Baruch, inspired him to endow Baruch’s School of Business with an 18 million USD pledge in 1998. That fall the school was renamed the Zicklin School of Business in recognition of Zicklin’s transformational gift. The endowment came at a time when the college was facing harsh financial realities that would have led to detrimental retrenchment. As a consequence, instead of implementing draconian cuts in programs and faculty, the Zicklin School was empowered to improve its academic offerings, retain and attract high-caliber faculty, and ensure that students of limited means would have continued access to excellent public higher education.
Not content merely to contribute to business education through financial support, Zicklin also shares his vast business knowledge and experience in the classroom. Since 1989, he has been a member of the faculty of New York University’s Stern School of Business; as a clinical professor his areas of expertise include corporate governance, business ethics, and finance. He is also a senior lecturer in legal studies and business ethics at Wharton and an adjunct professor at Baruch College. He often addresses incoming graduate students at the Zicklin School on the importance of integrity as they advance in their career.