Matthew and Kathryn Cesari

After the Aisle

There and Back Again

Matthew ’09 and Kathryn Cesari ’10


By Jerry Salley

A 15-year romance and 10 years of married life started with meddlesome friends for Matthew Cesari ’09 and Kathryn Schroeder ’10.

At the time, Matthew was a sophomore and a place-kicker for the Paladins football team. Kathryn was a first-year student, already pursuing

her business administration studies. A teammate of Matthew’s was good friends with a friend of Kathryn’s, and they both resolved to get the couple together.

“They forced us to meet in a dorm room,” Matthew remembers.

The couple settled into a mostly campus-centered romance during their entire time at Furman.

“A lot of dining hall dates,” laughs Matthew, who was also a business administration major and was pledging the Sigma Nu fraternity during that time. “I used to hide in her dorm as an excuse to get out of some of my pledge duties.”

When Kathryn graduated, Matthew persuaded her to join him in Atlanta, his hometown, where he had already started working for Northwestern Mutual. She eventually joined investment banking firm Raymond James.

It was during a visit to Kathryn’s family’s lake house near Chicago during Thanks- giving 2010 when Matthew “set up a little proposal situation.” They were married in 2011 in her hometown of Jacksonville, Florida, then headed back to Atlanta to continue their careers.

The decade has “gone by quick,” Matthew says.

“And we’ve done a lot, too,” Kathryn says. “It’s crazy to think we’ve got two kids and we’ve lived in a foreign country.”

The latter happened first, in 2017, when Kathryn stepped up to help open a Raymond James office in London. One good omen: The week they arrived, Furman President Elizabeth Davis visited the city to host an alumni event.

London is “our favorite place in the world,” Kathryn says.

“We would have stayed longer,” Matthew says, “but when Kathryn got pregnant, it made sense to come back home to Atlanta to start the family.” The couple returned to the States in March 2019, and their son, Greyson, was born two months later. After Kathryn’s maternity leave, the family moved back to London for a few months, returning to the U.S. in January 2020. They settled in Brookhaven in Atlanta’s northern suburbs, where daughter Peyton joined the family in April 2021.

In 2020, Kathryn left Raymond James, where she had risen to the position of vice president, and today works as an investment banker with William Blair in Atlanta.

Matthew has continued with Northwestern Mutual as a financial advisor, but has a side hustle in the coffee business with Zero Mile Roasters – with Kathryn helping out. Matthew also helps lead Purpose on Tap, an Atlanta men’s ministry.

Travel remains a passion, including revisiting the city where it all started for them. On a recent trip to Greenville, a friend encouraged them to rent bikes to ride on the Prisma Health Swamp Rabbit Trail.

“We didn’t really know exactly where the trail was,” Matthew remembers. “We literally rode up Poinsett Highway from downtown on the sidewalk. It was not that fun.”

When they got to campus, they called their friend, who set them on the right path.

“We rode back on the trail,” says Matthew, “and it was a much more pleasant experience.”

The music major went from a church choir in Charleston to Furman to a recording studio in L.A.

Reflections on what was, is and will be important at Furman.