Senior Lawrence Russinoff pursues a career in finance at an Ivy League


Ivy Lam

Senior LJ Russinoff serves as this year’s DECA president and leads a chapter of over 800 members. He will be attending the Wharton School of Business this fall to pursue his interests in finance and investment banking.

Ivy Lam, Senior Feature Editor

With a whistle in one hand and yellow flag in the other, one student paces up and down the soccer field to call the plays, penalties and free kicks of the game.

Besides serving as a referee on the weekends for the Parkland Soccer Club over the last six years, senior LJ Russinoff succeeds academically and pursues his passions through various extracurriculars.

Originally from New York, Russinoff moved to Parkland in 2005 and has remained in the city ever since. At Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, Russinoff is heavily involved in the four-year Academy of Finance program and DECA chapter, leading over 800 members and a 42-member officer team in the third-largest DECA chapter in the world as this year’s president.

“LJ is always willing to help with whatever is needed in our chapter and has befriended so many of our members,” MSD DECA Executive Vice President Carly Rogalla said. “Anyone, from freshman to seniors, has no problem asking him for help and we can all trust him to lead our chapter to success.”

Russinoff’s DECA journey began in his freshman year serving as a senator; he attended meetings and relayed important DECA-related information to his class period. As the Director of Finance in his sophomore year, he oversaw the purchasing and distribution of all chapter merchandise and supplies, which was difficult to do during the COVID-19 school year. In his junior year, Russinoff earned the position of Chief Financial Officer, where he used QuickBooks to check MSD DECA’s reimbursements and financial reports. He made sure all the chapters’ finances were in order.

“I’ve exhibited my passion for a career in business through my school classes,” Russinoff said. “In the Academy of Finance, I took classes in accounting, personal finance, entrepreneurship, and investing. I’m also in AP Microeconomics/Macroeconomics.”

As a DECA officer for four years, Russinoff’s experience and leadership duties have given him real business experience and life skills. For instance, he did accounting and managed a cash flow of over $300,000 as CFO in the 2021-2022 school year.

“I’m going to enter the field of investment banking upon graduation and then I figure I’ll do that for a few years and make some money, pay back some loans,” Russinoff said.

Additionally, Russinoff has accumulated numerous accolades over the years, both in and out of DECA.

“I have qualified for DECA states all four years and for ICDC three out of those four years,” Russinoff said. “I am a Silver Knight nominee for the General Scholarship category and am in the top 1% in my class. I’m also a National Merit Commended Scholar and an AP Scholar with Distinction.”

Russinoff has also been a part of the Investment Club all four years of high school, expressing his interest in investment banking early on. Outside of school, Russinoff is involved with BBYO, a Jewish youth organization, serving as the Regional Vice President for Broward and Palm Beach County.

To balance his work, social and school life, Russinoff follows a no work on Friday or Saturday rule. He believes Friday and Saturday are designated for fun and relaxation. To ensure his work is done, he completes his work early and sets a schedule for himself to organize his thoughts and tasks.

Russinoff was admitted early into the University of Pennsylvania Wharton School of Business where he will major in finance. At an Ivy League, he aspires to establish a professional network.

“All these people, many of them are going to have very promising futures and I want to make sure that we are connected and have a mutualistic relationship where we can help each other in the future,” Russinoff said.

With only three months left of high school left, Russinoff looks forward to traditional senior events, such as Grad Bash, prom and graduation. Additionally, he will be participating in the DECA International Career Development Conference in late April. After college, Russinoff hopes to go back to school to earn his Master’s of Business Administration degree with the intent of entering a position in a big corporation.