During his 28-year career with Merrill Lynch, John Thiel served as head of U.S. Global Wealth Management, steering the iconic financial firm through a period of unprecedented change, including its acquisition by Bank of America and overseeing a $15 billion business with 23,000 employees.
He is credited with managing complex relationships, mobilizing a global workforce, and reestablishing trust with clients and the public following the 2008 financial crisis — all while driving dramatic business growth. Thiel then served as vice chairman of Global Wealth and Investment Management before retiring from Merrill Lynch. He began his career with Merrill Lynch in 1989 as a financial adviser in Tampa.
In July 2018, Thiel joined My Next Season as a partner and senior advisor. His work involves strategy consulting and business development for the organization, which specializes in executive retirement and career transitions. He also advises and mentors not-for-profit CEOs in developing strategy and proactively responding to change.
Thiel has long been involved in helping others. As a board member of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Investor Education Foundation, he cultivates relationships and promotes initiatives focused on improving the financial literacy of underserved populations. A longtime advocate for curing cancer, he serves on the board of the V Foundation for Cancer Research and chairs the board’s Don’t Ever Give Up support organization. He is also deeply involved in increasing educational opportunity as a trustee of the FSU Foundation.
Thiel is a frequent speaker, and has presented at a variety of venues and made multiple appearances on FOX Business Network and CNBC. He was he was Florida State’s spring commencement speaker in both 2019 and 2014 and served as a Charles A. Bruning Distinguished Speaker at the College of Business.
Thiel earned his bachelor’s degree in accounting at Florida State and is a Certified Public Accountant.