Giving Back: Advancing Diversity and Innovation

By Chris Anderson

8 - Giving Back Joe KosinskiFor Joe Kosinski (BUS ’78), DePaul is not just a path to his personal success, but an avenue he helps open for many others.

Kosinski and his wife, Sue Kosinski (BUS ’78), a Strobel Scholar, have made contributions to DePaul every year since they graduated, increasing their annual donations as they became more successful. In 2014, they established the Joseph and Susan Kosinski Endowed Award in Accountancy, which provides recognition and financial assistance to students in accounting and management information services at the Driehaus College of Business.

“Sue and I both came from nowhere in terms of financing a college education,” says Joe. “Our families didn’t have a lot of resources. We knew we would have to stay in town for college and work while we went to school. Scholarships and financial aid made a huge difference, and it’s even more important today.”

For most of his long career at Abbott, where he retired recently as director of corporate manufacturing accounting and customs and trade compliance, Joe Kosinski made a significant contribution to promote diversity within the global health care company. In the process, he helped a number of DePaul graduates start and advance their careers. Throughout his own career, he was highly committed to broadening diversity in the accounting field at large, and allied his efforts with the National Association of Black Accountants and the Association of Latino Professionals for America among other groups. He helped make Abbott a nationally recognized leader in promoting diversity. In 2013, Kosinski received the Illinois CPA Society’s Outstanding Leadership in Advancing Diversity Award.

“I’ve heard so many stories over the years about how financial aid made a difference, especially to first-generation college students.”

“I believe in diversity and inclusion as a way of life, a necessity. A diversity of perspectives and experiences are critical to drive innovation—something that DePaul has always believed, he says. “I’ve been fortunate to be associated with Abbott for more than 30 years, and for them, diversity and inclusion is a business priority.”

Decades after they were students, the Kosinskis stay connected to DePaul. They both are members of Ledger & Quill, the DePaul accountancy alumni and friends association. Joe has spent years as a corporate champion to attract DePaul students to careers at Abbott. He currently serves on the Finance Advisory Board for the finance department in the college, and continues to work formally and informally to mentor DePaul students and counsel alumni.

“Whether it’s mentoring, networking, advising or financial support,” Joe says, “we stay involved because there were people before us who stayed involved and helped us along our way.”