This is Bjorn Jonsson. He is currently the chair of the Department of Business and Management and an alum. In his downtime, he enjoys cycling around different cities and mountain biking. In his 20s, he rode a Century, which is a 100-mile long ride. His wife, Shannon, also currently works at Vanguard.
While his name is Scandinavian, he’s originally from Irvine and played baseball at the University High School.
"Playing the first baseman is great because you get to be a part of a lot of different plays throughout the game. When my kids were growing up, I used to coach little league," Bjorn says.
After graduating from high school, Bjorn went to Vanguard majoring in business management.
"I tell incoming freshmen to find something they are passionate about. Find their favorite hobby and you can work in that field all the time. Business is a great opportunity because any product or service is a business. Everything from the things in your house to things you carry came from a business." Bjorn encourages. When Bjorn was not in school, he would spend his summers in Europe with his dad.
After completing his bachelor of arts, Bjorn attended Pepperdine University's business school where he was able to get a master's in business administration. Bjorn then worked in real estate and moved to Utah for a couple of years. The snow wasn’t something he was used to and since he missed the warm weather in Orange County, Bjorn and his wife decided to move back to Southern California.
He started working as a Director of International Sales at Oakley headquarters in Foothill Ranch. There, he continued to work in action sports then jumped into action sports optics and eventually he moved on to work at other corporate companies like Boost Mobile and World Industries.
Bjorn's passion would eventually start to change from sales and marketing to teaching. Between 2011-2016, he started working as an adjunct teaching a couple of business courses before working full-time in 2017.
"I think business and Christianity both have excellence in common. God expects excellence out of us and it's important to strive for excellence so we can be successful in any environment. It's important to utilize God's gifts at the same time to integrate our faith into our careers and that's what I tell my students."
Today, Bjorn enjoys traveling and his favorite destination is Hamilton Island, which is located in the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. He also has his own advising company, Smoothstone, where he helps innovate different strategies with manufacturing, brand and product development. His family currently resides in Rancho Santa Margarita and attends Pastor Rick Warren's Saddleback Church in Lake Forrest.
Vanguard is so thankful for Bjorn's experience and his commitment to bringing up the next generation of Christ-centered business leaders.
- university news