William Norris ’96, chief investment officer, CIBC Bank USA in Chicago, led the event, titled “Financial Fitness: Managing Through a Complex Environment,” which was one of the first to be sponsored by the new Center for Financial Literacy at North Central College. Norris developed a talent for banking and investments in advance of his North Central undergraduate education. In the early 1980s, he moved to the Chicago area from Newcastle, Ind., to pursue a music career as a percussionist. Along the way, Norris accepted a job as a teller at Gary-Wheaton Bank in Wheaton, Ill. He started taking classes through the College’s evening and weekend program and gratefully used the bank’s tuition assistance. He remembers a key moment in his early career when a bank manager put a Wall Street Journal on his desk and told him to learn about investments. Soon he was managing the bank’s bond portfolio. By the time Norris graduated from North Central in 1996, his title was vice president and portfolio manager at First National Bank of Chicago. A series of mergers and acquisitions in the banking field and Norris’ talents all played a role in his professional success. Now he’s finding ways to give back to his alma mater, through volunteering with the Center for Financial Literacy and helping current students make connections in his industry. “My focus is on helping young professionals get into the business world,” he says. Norris also serves on the boards of the Jazz Institute of Chicago and the Fiduciary Investment Risk Management Association.