Brian Shortsleeve ’91 Speaks at Chapel

On a quiet Friday morning, the Belmont Hill community gathered in the Chapel to hear from one of Belmont Hill’s many distinguished alumni. Brian Shortsleeve ‘91 was back at Belmont Hill for his 25th reunion, and he outlined his many career successes, both in the public and private sector, and provided current students with advice for later in life.

After attending Belmont Hill, Shortsleeve went on to Harvard where he participated in the ROTC program, and he then served as a Marine in the Balkans and the Persian Gulf. After his years in the military, which he credits with instilling in him the discipline and problem solving necessary for his career, Shortsleeve went on to attend Harvard Business School, before going to work as a venture capitalist. Brian Shortsleeve was recently appointed by Governor Charlie Baker to head the MBTA, Shortsleeve’s first public sector job after an already very successful career in the private sector. Heading the MBTA is no easy job, as the agency is riddled by both debt and inefficiency, two of the many problems Shortsleeve hopes to solve.

Already, the results of Shortsleeve’s programs are visible; the annual deficit of the MBTA is shrinking, employees are coming to work more reliably, and the quality of service is rising, but there is still much work to be done. Shortsleeve amazed the Belmont Hill community by showing graphs of the train service’s annual deficit, and, while the MBTA is by no means perfect, the progress is clear.

Shortsleeve finished off his talk with a few pieces of advice for the community. He described how, in his many years of work, there were always difficult decisions, and one must follow his own instincts to achieve goals. Furthermore, he described how following a less traditional path, such as his own military service, is often more beneficial than simply following what most others do. Overall, Brian Shortsleeve provided an inspiring and interesting chapel that impressed all within the Belmont Hill community.

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