LaRussa graduated from Auburn University in 1982 with a bachelor's degree in finance and received his master's in public and private management from Birmingham-Southern College in 1986. He is founder and chief executive officer of Sterling Capital Management, a multi-asset holding company headquartered in Birmingham. Sterling Capital Management owns and operates three platform companies: Fenwick Brands, a consumer-packaged goods private equity firm that owns Moore's Marinade and Wing Sauce and Powell Mahoney Limited; American Pipe and Supply, a wholesale distributor of pipe, valves, and fittings; and StoneRiver Company, a real estate development and property management company. In addition, he serves as a senior advisor of Azalea Capital and assists the firm in its investing activities.
He serves on the boards of Big Jack Holdings, Security Engineers Inc., Orbital Energy Services, First Commercial Bank, the Crippled Children's Foundation, the UAB Comprehensive Diabetes Center, and the Salvation Army. He also serves as board chair for The Joseph S. Bruno Charitable Foundation, as well as Sterling Capital Management Company’s holdings: American Pipe and Supply Company, Fenwick Brands, and StoneRiver Company. He served on the board of Bruno’s Inc. until the company sold in 1995.
In addition to his service to the Auburn University Foundation, LaRussa is on the College of Human Sciences’ Joseph S. Bruno Study in Italy Advisory Council and the Raymond J. Harbert College of Business’ Campaign Committee. He is a member of Auburn’s James E. Foy Loyalty Society and 1856 Society, as well as a life member of the Auburn Alumni Association. He is married to Lynn and has two married daughters, Megan and Chelsey.