Judith Candi (Gooden '04) Davis and Earnest Davis Jr.

When Judith Candi (Gooden ‘04) Davis, a former psychology major, isn’t out enjoying jazz concerts or eating at restaurants with her husband, Earnest Davis Jr., she’s managing the clinical operations for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois. Though she’s a young business executive, she’s made some bold steps in the process of building her career.

“I want to grow. I don’t believe you should stay stagnant,” says Davis.

It’s advice like “growing in your career” that Davis recently gave to students when she came back to Bethel. During that visit she spoke in a couple of business classes and to other campus groups.

Davis wasn’t afraid to share that she has set some high goals professionally. She hopes to be her company’s youngest vice president by the youthful age of 35.

“I’m building key relationships and establishing a reputation of accountability and execution within my organization,” says the young professional. “Hopefully, when the opportunity arrives, I will be poised to walk into the right position at the right time. I truly believe that success doesn’t come from ‘climbing the corporate ladder,’ it comes from being lifted up the corporate ladder, which is the main goal of my career.”

Davis is definitely on her way to achieving that. She’s in charge of 300 plus employees and a $150 million budget. She worked her way there by overseeing projects at Wediko Children’s Center and Freiberg Orthopedics. She’s also served in multiple roles at Blue Cross Blue Shield like executive resident, assistant manager and currently manager.

She attributes this drive in life to her mother.

“There have been many times in my life I’ve wanted to deter or falter from my current path… but my mother always made sure I stuck with it,” says Davis.

Challenges continue to come every day, but Davis still stays true to herself. She’s still personable, down-to-earth, and always ready to spend a night out on the town with her husband.