Ricardo Crumble had two realizations as an undergraduate: he wasn’t going to become a professional athlete and the accumulation of wealth in the market was fascinating. He changed his major to finance and economics, worked as a trader, helped author the liquidity section of the Dodd Frank Act and worked at several large organizations before joining Northern Trust five years ago. Appointed treasurer in June 2022, Ricardo discusses getting everyone involved, how Treasury empowers the business and the importance of building diverse teams.
Involving Teammates at All Levels
If you’re part of the project, I bring the whole squad regardless of position. Sometimes we’re 10 partners deep. It’s helpful because it gives every member of the team “reps.” If you want to become a better player, you need to practice. It’s also an opportunity for junior partners to see different angles and scenarios so when it’s their time to step up they can “knock it down.”
Treasury’s Role in Our Business
We protect the balance sheet and operate in the background to ensure partners can successfully execute on their business strategies. We help the business understand the potential impact of their products and services, and work with them on pricing so it’s profitable both for the business and the company. As changes occur, we invest long or short term to maximize our net-interest income (income expense subtracted from total interest income) without posing undue risk.
Financial Institutions and Diversity in Finance Leaders
Earlier in my career, I felt if I outworked everyone around me and didn’t wait to be told what to do, opportunities would come. I thought like an entrepreneur—identifying gaps, developing new quantitative approaches and looking at how I could help the organization evolve. Being appointed treasurer is a culmination of that approach, but the fact is I’m one of only a few Black treasurers at a major financial organization. I’m a firm believer that different experiences and diverse backgrounds lead to better outcomes. We need to make sure that as leaders and managers, we are being intentional about looking for different viewpoints and actively bringing them to the table.
Advice to New Partners
Be transparent. Everything we do is team-oriented—that’s a key aspect of our culture. You can have a terrific idea, but you also have to make sure people understand it; you have to get them to buy in. Be willing to work with others and have patience. Move with purpose.
Hometown: Cleveland, Ohio
Current home: I split time between my place in downtown Chicago and my family home in Moreland Hills, Ohio.
Pets: Two cats (Simba, Meka), two dogs (Lola, JJ) and 12 koi fish
Volunteer time: I volunteer coaching youth sports programs on the weekends. I feel that sports provide a good medium for kids to learn important skills they can leverage throughout life like setting goals, communication, teamwork, etc.
Favorite sports team: The Ohio State football team and whatever NBA team Lebron plays for
Comfort food: BBQ
Best meeting icebreaker: Inquire about partners' weekends
New pandemic habit: Taking walks with my wife at lunch time and feeding my koi fish
Best advice you’ve received: The 5Ps from my junior high school basketball coach. "Proper preparation prevents poor performance."
Ideal dinner companion: Coach Mike Krzyzewski