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financial nerd AND athlete

Shaun P. Merriman 
1985, business graduate
2015 recipient of the Alumni Distinguished Achievement Award

I've always been a financial nerd AND an athlete. With a natural affinity for numbers, I would gladly study and work hard to be a bank analyst during the day while moonlighting as a professional water skier on nights and weekends. For half of my career, I have been a bank president, which is gratifying and fulfilling but also quite demanding. So, in my free time, I enjoy physically demanding activities including cycling, weight lifting, water skiing and snow skiing. My passion for skiing began at an early age, and on a most memorable day in 1982, I was hired to water ski professionally for Sea World of Ohio and Florida — while still attending UWEC. Spending my winter, spring and summer breaks flying or driving to and from those parks, performing in front of thousands of spectators, was fantastic! It was truly an unforgettable and impactful experience. After working for Sea World for six years, I grew into a leadership role. Although not seemingly related, my show skiing experience and managing other performers had a profound effect on my success in banking. Today, I continue to incorporate many successful show skiing fundamentals in leading my professional banking team — preparation, precision and execution. I'm a self-described financial nerd AND an athlete … and that's pretty powerful.