Building New Hope for ChildrenJohn Stein has been a Vanderbilt supporter for several decades – in fact, since he was recruited as an undergraduate to the men’s swimming team in 1969. From there, he relayed straight through a Master’s in Business Management from Owen into a successful career in banking. Today, Stein is the president of Bank of America Tennessee.
Stein began his service to Vanderbilt when he joined the board of Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt in 2003. “In pretty short order I learned about everything else the university has to offer. Vanderbilt has so many facets, which makes it a gem not only locally, but regionally, nationally and even internationally,” he said.
In the intervening years, Stein has also served on the Medical Center board and most recently, on the Athletics Committee. He has continued to serve on the Children’s Hospital board and was named chair in 2008. Under his leadership, Children’s Hospital has recently broken ground on a major expansion which will add 30,000 square feet, 33 neonatal, acute care and medical-surgical beds, and expanded programs in prematurity, heart disease and pediatric cancer.
For this latest expansion, the Bank of America Foundation has donated $1 million to the Children’s Hospital capital campaign. For 21 years, Bank of America has been the presenting sponsor of the annual Iroquois Steeplechase, with proceeds going directly to hospital programs.
“To be a responsible corporate citizen, we think it’s important to give back to the communities where we live, work and play,” Stein said. “Children’s Hospital is a tremendous example of Vanderbilt’s commitment to the collegial sharing of ideas and research. This collaboration has a strong impact on discovery, treatment and ultimately, outcomes.”
Stein began his banking career in 1975 as a management trainee and has held a variety of executive positions. In 1980, he opened the trade finance office in New York City for a predecessor to Bank of America and was named executive vice president and manager of the international division two years later. He moved back to Nashville in the early ‘80s to marry his wife, Beth, a Nashville native. Their son, Tyler (VU '12), is continuing the Vanderbilt tradition.
In 1987, Stein became executive vice president and manager of Bank of America’s regional Commercial Banking Group. He was named to his current position as Tennessee President in 2002. In addition to his role as president, he serves as Bank of America’s National Market Executive, For-Profit Healthcare. In this role, he manages the bank’s national for-profit health care operation, loaning money to hospitals, biotech companies and other health care entities.
Stein doesn’t swim competitively anymore, though several years ago he and the members of his Vanderbilt relay team got back together to successfully compete in the U.S. Masters – breaking their age group record. These days, he sticks to tennis, biking and skiing. He also loves music and has been an avid supporter of Nashville’s music community through the W.O. Smith School, Leadership Music and other organizations.