John Shain
Automated Financial Systems, Inc.
Board Chairman

Biography

In more ways than one, Temple University made John Shain who he is today. His parents first met each other at a Temple football game while undergraduates in the late 1930s. His own undergraduate years at Temple’s business school were enriched by the advanced computer research he did as an assistant to Finance professor Jerry Fisher. His skills in financial computer modeling, rare at the time, led to his first professional job at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia. “The computing capability on an iPhone is 200 times what Temple’s entire computing power was 40 years ago,” Mr. Shain recalls. Just running a program on Temple’s mainframe computer could be a tedious chore. “A professor in engineering or chemistry might be running a job that would take the whole computer for hours,” he recalls. “You’d just stand in line for an hour, go get coffee or even lunch, and then come back.” Today Mr. Shain is president of Automated Financial Systems (AFS), the market leader in providing major U.S. banks with software and services that assess risk, operational performance, and pricing. Banks have grown increasingly reliant on AFS software and expertise over the company’s 45-year history, as the global financial system has grown faster and more complex. Says Mr. Shain, “Banks tell us, you’ve got to do all the accounting because we can’t satisfy the customers (digital and mobile), the regulators and our own business needs internally”. Among job applicants, Mr. Shain says he looks for “creativity, intelligence, collaborative skills, obviously, but also analytic and self-sustaining skills.” New hires at AFS are usually several years out of school and have backgrounds that may include some setbacks and failures. Says Mr. Shain, “We will hire 20-30 people a year who have varied backgrounds, but they are all mature in the sense that they know what they want to focus on.”

Temple University Degree
Bachelor of Business Administration ’73, Fox School of Business

Temple University Awards & Affiliatons

  • Acres of Diamond Circle
  • Capital Campaign Committee, Fox School of Business
  • Commencement Speaker, Fox School of Business
  • Dean’s Council, Fox School of Business
  • Generational Leader
  • Leadership Council

What I wanted to be when I was 20 years old
By the time I was 20, I had already started two businesses and fully expected to continue but at a much bigger level.

Best piece of advice anyone ever gave me
“Be yourself, follow your dreams, and don’t fear failing; get up and keep going.”