Joseph Podulka


BS, 1994

MBA, 1999
University of Michigan

MS, 2000
Engineering Economics Systems &
Operations Research
Stanford University

Joseph Podulka has built a career around his broad finance and analytic experience from strategic, financial, and operational roles – in the United States and abroad. He has created global teams and functions from the ground up, consolidated operations and refocused failing businesses, acquired companies, and provided strategic insight to both large and small organizations.

He began at MSU in 1990 in the Honors College and lived in Abbott Hall, where he served as floor president for two years. He was selected as a member of Tower Guard during his sophomore year, participating in volunteer activities for the Resource Center for Persons with Disabilities. He also volunteered as a Student Ambassador for MSU, providing campus tours to prospective faculty and serving as a night dispatcher at the Main Library. His MSU avocations included intramural sports and season tickets to football and basketball. He was a member of Sigma Nu fraternity.

Today, Mr. Podulka is the chief financial officer for Cred, a global financial technology company offering technology solutions for digital assets, partnering with leading crypto wallets and exchanges to enable liquidity in the form of borrowing and lending. Cred serves customers in more than 180 countries.

He previously was the CFO for Emergent Payments, which enables local payment acceptance for global merchants in emerging markets. Prior to joining Emergent Payments, he was CFO and the vice president for finance at Hearst, owners of the San Francisco Chronicle and At Hearst, he helped drive the digital transformation for one of San Francisco’s most iconic media brands.

He also spent 11 years at eBay/PayPal in a variety of roles in the U.S. and abroad. From 2007-2011, he lived in the Netherlands, Denmark, and Luxembourg. In his last role at eBay/PayPal, he led a team that evaluated all new business opportunities for PayPal globally.

He began his career as an automotive engineer for General Motors and Chrysler.

Mr. Podulka is a member of MSU’s San Francisco Bay Area Alumni Club.

He and his wife, Kristen, who received an advertising degree at MSU in 1997, have a son, Ryan, and daughter, Emily. They live in California.

Recipients of this award, established in 2004, must have a distinguished career, evidenced by significant accomplishments; possess high standards of integrity that positively reflect on the college and the university; be recognized for leadership in the community; and demonstrate support of the applied engineering sciences program (formerly engineering arts), the College of Engineering, and/or MSU. The winner is selected by the applied engineering sciences alumni advisory board.