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Tao Huang, Grad ’91

Tao HuangTao Huang, a computer programmer in China, didn’t know how to speak English when he won an award to study for one year in the United States. So he chose a school at which he’d be forced to learn the language: St. Norbert College in De Pere, Wis., where he was the only Chinese student out of 1,700.

After getting a master’s in computer science at Marquette, Tao answered a newspaper ad for Morningstar Inc. and joined the fledgling company as a software developer.

By 1998, Tao was named Morningstar’s president of international operations, responsible for opening offices around the world. At the same time, he began working on his M.B.A.

In 2000, he became chief operating officer at Morningstar, managing day-to-day operations. “We strongly believe our mission of ‘helping individual investors make better investment decisions,’” says Tao. “As an individual investor myself, I get lots of satisfaction from creating new products and services knowing people like me will be better off.” 

In 2003, Tao was selected as a “Business Leader of Color” by Chicago United; he received the 2004 Distinguished Young Alumnus Award from the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business, and has been one of Chicago’s 40 under 40. He currently serves as a board member for Asian Human Services, a non-profit organization that provides services for immigrants.      

“My personal formula for success,” says Tao, “is giving 120 percent of my efforts to my work and always looking for new learning opportunities. Although I have worked for the same company the last 15 years, I have had many different jobs, which gives me a better understanding of our business and helps me to be more effective.”

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