Innovative New York jobseeker scores employment

Fri Dec 19, 2008 4:18pm EST
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By Nancy Leinfuss

NEW YORK (Reuters) - One innovative New Yorker's desperate search to find a job this summer paid off big this holiday season, after a year when over a million jobs have been lost as the U.S. economy spiraled into recession.

Joshua Persky, known to many as the "Sandwich Board Guy," is now happily employed by accounting firm Weiser LLP in midtown Manhattan.

"While his story is unique and an example of his perseverance in today's economy, what we were attracted to most was Joshua's rich and impressive experience," said Douglas Phillips, Weiser's managing partner. Persky is now a senior manager in the firm's business valuation and corporate finance group.

His new office is not very far from where he first gained notoriety as the unemployed investment banker who wore a poster suit reading -- "Experienced MIT Grad For Hire" -- while parading past a key area for commercial banks and investment houses hoping to lure future employers.

The job seeker encountered many well wishers along the way, and offers of potential jobs across the country and the world, but most recently he secured one in New York, hard hit by massive layoffs in the financial industry.

"Wall Street has become very humble, based on what's going on. There are many fallen angels and hidden treasures out there and we're able to attract them because of the growth opportunity that my group represents right now," said Eliot Ogulnick, director of the business valuations and corporate finance group, who hired Persky.

"I've been looking for someone like Joshua, with his specialization since I arrived at this firm," said Ogulnick. He said while his earlier efforts to secure work were certainly innovative, Persky was hired based on his own merits and a month-long interview process.

Persky had remained unemployed for 11-months this year after losing his job as a valuations specialist at Houlihan Lokey. He said he generated many leads because of all the publicity from wearing the sandwich board, including a recruiter who recommended him to Weiser.   Continued...

<p>REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton</p>