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Jim Selbert, SM '66

President and Co-Founder, Warren & Selbert

Jim SelbertJim Selbert, SM ’66

A few years after graduating from MIT Sloan, Jim Selbert, SM ’66, founded Warren & Selbert with his partner, James Warren. He used what he’d learned at MIT Sloan to develop software that helped arrange complex leasing transactions. Now, Warren & Selbert is a premier financial software firm with a product that has helped companies worldwide, in a variety of industries, structure financing for nearly $1 trillion in real assets. A product wasn’t the only thing that Selbert created though—he also built a company that has flourished for over four decades. His advice to young alumni? “Build something that will stand the test of time. Take the longest view possible and create a family-friendly environment.” For Selbert, the hands-on, real-world focus of courses at MIT Sloan also served him well in his career. “MIT Sloan gives you both the theoretical knowledge and the concrete skills that allow you to become a true practitioner.”

In April, Selbert visited campus as part of the Master of Finance (MFin) Speaker Series to give a presentation on renewable energy financing. (Warren & Selbert has nearly 30 renewable energy companies worldwide as clients). “It was a great opportunity to interact with the current MFin students. They were interested in the financing of real assets and in the financial engineering and optimization aspects of our work.” For Selbert, the highlight of the presentation was having Professor Gordon Kaufman in the room. “I was in Professor Kaufman’s class back in 1966, learning the mathematics of optimization. It was a delight for me to be able to present with him in the room.” The lasting impact of professors like Gordon Kaufman on his life and career has not gone unappreciated by Selbert. “I give back as a thank-you for the education that allowed me to start my business and run it successfully for the past 42 years.”