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2021 Leadership Conference

Speaker Biographies

Karen L. Barr became President & CEO of the Investment Adviser Association in 2014, after serving as the IAA’s General Counsel for 17 years. Under her leadership, the Investment Adviser Association has grown in both size and scope, enhancing the range of services, educational opportunities and peer-to-peer involvement for fiduciary investment advisers. Prior to joining the IAA, Barr was in private practice at Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering (now WilmerHale), where she represented clients in securities regulatory matters. Barr received her B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and her law degree from the University of Michigan Law School. She is a frequent speaker on investment adviser issues.

John M. Barry is a prize-winning, New York Times best-selling author, whose 2004 book The Great Influenza: The Story of the Deadliest Pandemic in History, drew him into public policymaking. He was the only non-scientist on a federal government Infectious Disease Board of Experts, served on the original team that recommended public health measures to mitigate a pandemic, and advised the Bush and Obama administrations on pandemic policy. He has worked with federal, United Nations, and World Health Organization officials and the private sector. He serves on numerous advisory boards and is Distinguished Scholar at the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine.

Alison E. Baur is Deputy General Counsel for Franklin Templeton’s US Investment Management business and Vice Chair of the IAA’s Board. Previously, Baur was a Vice President at Charles Schwab, serving as Chief Legal Officer for the Laudus Funds and Excelsior Funds and senior attorney supporting multiple divisions. Before Schwab, she was Associate General Counsel at Grantham, Mayo, Van Otterloo and Co. and worked at the SEC, first as a law clerk and then as Senior Counsel in the Division of Investment Management’s Office of the Chief Counsel and as Branch Chief in the Office of Investment Company Regulation. A graduate of University of California, Davis, and University of California, Hastings College of the Law, Baur is a member of the California and DC Bar Associations.

Molly Bennard, CPA, CFA is a Managing Director at Focus Financial Partners, where she is responsible for business development and acquisition activities, specializing in sourcing new Focus partner firms as well as merger candidates for existing partner firms. Prior to joining Focus, Bennard was head of the Strategic Initiatives Group at AXA US and an Associate within the investment banking division of Morgan Stanley. She began her career at PricewaterhouseCoopers, providing financial due diligence and other advisory services to private equity and corporate clients within the U.S. and Latin America. She holds an M.B.A. from Columbia Business School and a B.S. in Economics from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

Gail Bernstein Headshot

Gail C. Bernstein is General Counsel of the Investment Adviser Association. She joined the IAA from the law firm of WilmerHale in Washington, DC, where she had been a Special Counsel in the Securities Department. While in private practice, Bernstein counseled clients on all aspects of financial and securities regulation. Bernstein earned her B.A. from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and her law degree from Harvard Law School in 1988. After law school, Bernstein clerked for the Honorable Douglas P. Woodlock of the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts and was an associate at the Boston law firm of Mintz Levin.

Mike Brown, JD, CPA, is Vice Chairman and Managing Director of Boston Financial Management, responsible for business development, mergers and acquisitions, and talent searches. His career has been focused on providing financial, tax, and estate planning services to high net-worth individuals. Brown joined Boston Financial Management in 2008. In 1982, he left KPMG as a Senior Tax Manager to form Brown & Brown. Brown & Brown merged into a national CPA firm prior to his joining Boston Financial Management. He graduated from the College of the Holy Cross with a B.A. in Economics and received his J.D from the New England School of Law.

David Canter is Executive VP and Head of the RIA and Family Office Segments at Fidelity Institutional, overseeing a comprehensive custody platform, brokerage services, trading capabilities, and practice management and consulting. Previously, he was Executive VP of Practice Management and Consulting for Fidelity Clearing & Custody Solutions and Executive VP and CEO for Fidelity Institutional Wealth Services. Canter has also held positions at Post Advisory Group, Charles Schwab & Co., QuellosGroup, and the NYSE Division of Enforcement. He received his B.A. in political science from the University of Wisconsin and his J.D. from the University of Baltimore School of Law. He also holds the FINRA Series 24 license and is a member of the State Bar of California.

Seth Carpenter is a Managing Director and Chief Global Economist at Morgan Stanley. Previously, he was Chief US Economist for UBS and Head of US Research for Rokos Capital. Prior to entering the private sector, Carpenter had an almost two-decade career in the public sector. During his 15 years at the Federal Reserve, he rose to the position of Deputy Director of the Division of Monetary Affairs, working on monetary policy strategy and implementation. At the US Treasury, he was Deputy Assistant Secretary for Macroeconomic Analysis and then was nominated by President Obama to be Assistant Secretary for Financial Markets. He earned his PhD in Economics from Princeton University.

Ric Edelman is founder of Edelman Financial Engines, the nation’s largest independent RIA, as well as founder of the Digital Assets Council of Financial Professionals (DACFP). Leading trade publications including Investment Advisor and InvestmentNews have named him one of the most influential people in the financial planning and investment management profession. Consumer Reports has ranked his firm #1 for quality. Edelman is also a leading financial educator and champion of improving financial literacy. TALKERS magazine named him among the 100 Most Important Radio Talk Show Hosts in the country; his show has been on the air for nearly 30 years, currently airing on 80 stations coast-to-coast.

Alexandra Farmer is a partner, ESG & Impact, at Kirkland & Ellis, heading the firm’s ESG & Impact Practice Group. Farmer has significant experience advising clients on climate, environmental, and other ESG issues and helps clients develop and implement ESG programs tailored to their specific investment strategies and investor preferences. Farmer has been recognized by several attorney ranking directories. She is a featured contributor to numerous top law and industry publications and frequently speaks at legal or ESG conferences. She earned a B.S. in Biological and Environmental Engineering from Cornell University and a J.D. from George Washington University.

Carolyn Goldhaber is the Chief Financial Officer for Segall Bryant & Hamill. Prior to joining SBH, Goldhaber served as CFO for Vienna Beef Ltd, where she was responsible for overseeing all the functions of the accounting/finance organization. Her previous experience includes serving as a Vice President of Commercial Banking Finance at LaSalle Bank as well as various positions at Kraft Foods. She began her career at KPMG as an auditor within the audit practice. Goldhaber earned a B.S. in Accounting and Finance from Indiana University. She serves on the Board of Working in the Schools, a Chicago non-profit, and also volunteers in its WITS Workplace Mentoring Program.

Bomy M. Hagopian, CFA, is a Partner at Berkshire Global Advisors and Co-Head of Wealth Management Advisory. She joined Berkshire in 2003 and has over 18 years of industry experience. Hagopian opened the firm’s San Francisco office in 2014, leads the firm’s coverage of the Western region, and is a highly active partner on the Wealth Management Advisory team. Hagopian spent a number of years spearheading Berkshire’s London office. At Berkshire, she has advised on a wide range of M&A transactions in the wealth management, real estate/alternative investment management, and institutional/mutual fund investment management sectors. She graduated from Harvard University, cum laude, with a B.A. in Economics.

Theresa Hamacher, CFA, is President of Versanture Consulting and the Chair of the Board of the Morningstar Funds Trust. She is the author of The Fund Industry: How Your Money is Managed, The Pocket Idiot’s Guide to Investing in Stocks, and several articles in top industry publications. Hamacher served as the President of NICSA from 2008 to 2015, before which she was the Chief Investment Officer for Pioneer Investment Management USA and Chief Investment Officer for Prudential Mutual Funds. She began her career in the investment industry in 1983 as a securities analyst. She is a summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Yale College.

Simon Hallett, CFA, is Vice Chairman and Partner at Harding Loevner LP, with over 40 years of experience managing global portfolios for individuals and institutions. He began his career in 1979 in the investment management department of London-based Buckmaster and Moore, then moved to Hong Kong in 1981 to concentrate on Asian markets. In 1984, Hallett joined Jardine Fleming Investment Management to direct a team of portfolio managers investing in Southeast and North Asian markets. After joining Harding Loevner in 1991, he served as PM for the firm’s International Equity strategy and Emerging Markets strategy, and later as CIO. He assumed the position of Vice Chairman in 2021.

Paul Hilton, CFA, is a Portfolio Manager and Research Analyst covering the Consumer Discretionary sector and lead Manager for Sustainable Opportunities strategy at Trillium. He is also a member of the portfolio management team for the Green Century Balanced Fund, for which Trillium serves as a sub-advisor. Prior to joining Trillium in 2011, he worked at Calvert Investments, The Dreyfus Corporation, Smith Barney Asset Management, and the Council on Economic Priorities. Hilton is founder of the Social Investment Research Analysts Network, the first U.S. network of sustainability analysts. He is a member of CFA Society Boston and holds M.A. degrees in Anthropology from New York University and Education from Roberts Wesleyan College.

David King is Head of Environmental, Social, and Governance Stewardship at Fidelity Investments, responsible for expanding Fidelity’s Asset Management approach to integrating ESG factors into the investment process and overseeing the external communication of Fidelity’s ESG program. Prior to assuming his current position in December 2016, King served as vice president of Fidelity Institutional Asset Management Equity Investment Services for 12 years and held various leadership roles within Fidelity’s asset management and brokerage business units. Before joining Fidelity in 2001, King was a senior manager in the financial services and strategy practice at Accenture. He earned his B.S. degree in finance from Babson College.

Rebekah L. Kohmescher, CFP, CPA, is founding partner, Chief Executive Officer, and head of compliance at Altair. Prior to becoming CEO, Kohmescher worked in a client service role and as Chief Operating Officer. Beyond her work at Altair, she is a mentor to women pursuing finance and accounting majors and advocates for bringing more women into the financial advisory field. Previously, Kohmescher was a consultant in Arthur Andersen’s Private Client Services practice. She is on the Board of Directors and the Finance Committee of Community Health and the Finance Committee and School Board of St. Benedict’s in Chicago. She graduated cum laude from Xavier University with honors in accounting.

A principal at Elkus Manfredi Architects, Elizabeth Lowrey oversees corporate workplace strategy and design, as well as a portfolio ranging from hospitality and multi-family residential projects to retail/entertainment and higher education environments. Her clients include Publicis Groupe, Boston Consulting Group, GW&K, Fidelity, New Balance, Walt Disney Imagineering, and Harvard University. Boston Magazine included her on its list of “100 Most Influential People,” writing: “An office interiors whiz, Lowrey will no doubt be instrumental in shaping what our workplaces look like once we all return to them…” Her insights have been featured in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, Fast Company, and Metropolis.

Edward R. McNicholas is a Partner and co-leader of Ropes & Gray LLP’s Data, Privacy & Cybersecurity practice, focused on clients facing complex IT, constitutional and privacy issues. Recognized by the National Law Journal as a “Cybersecurity & Data Privacy Trailblazer,” he is the lead editor and co-author of Cybersecurity: A Practical Guide to the Law of Cyber Risk. McNicholas previously served as an Associate Counsel to President Clinton and as a clerk for the Honorable Paul Niemeyer on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. He received his J.D. from Harvard Law School, where he was an editor of the Harvard Law Review, and his A.B. from Princeton University.

Dan Mistler joined ACA Group as a senior practitioner to head their ESG advisory practice. He has led the development of ESG programs for private markets investors, hedge funds, and diversified financial services firms. He has helped entrepreneurs raise funds from ESG and impact-interested investors, quantified environmental and social impact in transactions, guided investors and companies in monetizing the environmental and social aspects of their businesses, and assisted asset managers in getting the most out of ESG reporting. Prior to his work at ACA, he led ESG services at multiple other global and boutique consulting firms, focusing on financial services and implementing ESG with assets across sectors.

Craig Moreshead is Managing Director of Foreside’s investment adviser compliance services team, which provides strategic and regulatory guidance to investment advisers under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 and state securities laws. Prior to joining Foreside, he served as in-house counsel for a large financial services company and has more than 25 years of experience providing regulatory compliance services to private fund managers, registered investment companies, and retail investment advisors. Moreshead received his B.A. from Hofstra University and a J.D. from Capital University Law School.

Cheryl Pipia is a vice president at T. Rowe Price and head of Integrated Sales for U.S. Intermediaries. With more than 25 years in the financial services industry, she is dedicated to providing the best solutions for her clients, helping a diverse group of financial professionals elevate their businesses to higher levels. She is focused on helping financial professionals add value to their clients’ investment strategies, as well as remain informed about trends in the financial marketplace. Pipia is the president and founder of Mission and Movement, a global organization dedicated to inspiring thoughtful living, purposeful leadership and long-lasting community impact.

Maureen Quigley, CFA, is a Partner, Portfolio Manager, and Chief Compliance Officer at Howland Capital Management, LLC. Quigley joined Howland Capital Management in 2004, after working for Decision Resources, Inc., The Joslin Diabetes Center, and the U.S. Senate Finance Committee. She graduated with a B.S. in Chemistry from Tufts University, an M.S. in Finance from Boston College and an M.B.A. from the Simmons Graduate School of Management. Quigley is a member of the CFA Society Boston and Boston Women in Finance. She serves as Treasurer of musiConnects, a Boston-based non-profit organization that builds community through free and low-cost music education, ensemble coaching and performance in underserved areas.

Ryan Radloff is CEO of Choice by KT, where he is focused on accelerating the market shift into alternative asset investing, specifically hard assets. Prior to Choice, Radloff co-founded and served as CEO of CoinShares, growing the team to 40+ employees across three offices that manage over $4BN in AUM on behalf of a global investor base.

T. Williams (Bill) Roberts is a partner and co-president of GW&K, responsible for business operations. He sits on various committees at GW&K including Executive, Management, Investment, Brokerage, Cybersecurity, and ESG. Roberts joined GW&K in 1994 as a vice president and director of operations. In 2006, he was appointed co-president of the firm responsible for establishing GW&K’s strategic plan and managing business operations. Prior to GW&K, he was director of finance and operations at Felton, Berlin. Roberts received his B.A. in Political Science from Denison University. He is a member of Business Executives for National Security and formerly served as treasurer and vice chairman of the Board of Trustees at the Salisbury School in Connecticut.

Vanessa Ruda, PhD is a senior partner in the Chicago office of leadership consulting firm RHR International and has responsibility for RHR’s United States Central Region. She leads the firm’s consulting team and business presence in Chicago and throughout the rest of the region. She has deep experience in the areas of C-level succession planning, executive selection and development, building high-performing senior teams, and strategic change leadership. She is also a faculty member of Northwestern University, where she teaches strategic change management in the Master of Science in Learning and Organizational Change program. Ruda holds a PhD in organizational psychology from the Kellogg School of Management.

Rayhaneh Sharif-Askary is Director of Investor Relations and Business Development at Grayscale Investments and leads efforts to generate new inflows into the Grayscale Investments suite of digital currency investment trusts. Sharif-Askary manages Grayscale’s growing investor base of family offices, hedge funds, institutional investors, and high net-worth individuals. Since joining Grayscale in 2018, she has helped raise billions in new capital and been on the cutting edge of bringing the digital currency asset class to some of the world’s most sophisticated and significant investors. She graduated magna cum laude from Duke with a B.S. in Economics. Sharif-Askary was named one of Business Insider’s 2020 Rising Stars of Wall Street.

Neil A. Simon is the Investment Adviser Association’s Vice President, Government Relations. He has a leading role in the formulation and communication of IAA’s views on legislative and regulatory issues and is responsible for advocacy before the U.S. Congress. Before joining the IAA, he was Director of Government Relations for the Financial Planning Association and served as executive director of the National Franchise Council. Prior to that, he was counsel in the law firm of Hogan & Hartson LLP (now known as Hogan Lovells). He received his B.A. magna cum laude from Clark University, his J.D. from Georgetown University, and is a member of Phi Beta Kappa.

Jaime H. Steinhardt is executive director and an investment specialist within J.P. Morgan Asset Management’s U.S. Equity Group. An employee since 2012, Steinhardt is the head of the investment specialist team that is responsible for communicating investment performance, outlook, and strategy positioning to institutional and funds clients for the firm’s U.S. Equity Value platform. She holds a B.A. in economics from Georgetown University and holds the Series 7 and 63 licenses. She is a member of both the New York Society of Security Analysts and the CFA Institute, and a CFA charterholder.

Jonathan Stern, CFA, is a partner at Berkshire Global Advisors, currently co-leading the firm’s Investment Management practice. Stern joined Berkshire in 1998 and has over 30 years of industry experience. He brings to Berkshire extensive experience in transactions involving banks, thrifts, asset managers, broker dealers, and finance companies. During his tenure at Berkshire, Stern has advised on a wide range of M&A transactions in the Real Assets, Wealth Management, and Securities industries. He graduated from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania with a B.S. degree in Economics and received an M.B.A. in Finance from Rutgers University.

Andrea Stimmel, CPA (inactive), became Chief Operating Officer at Mairs & Power in January 2018. She oversees the daily operations of Mutual Fund and Advisory Operations, Human Resources, Office Administration, Information Technology, and Investment Management Support. Stimmel joined the firm in 2004 and has served as an Accounting Manager, Director of Operations, Treasurer, and Chief Compliance Officer. Earlier, she held auditing positions with Ernst & Young, LLP and Target Corporation. Stimmel earned a B.A. in International Affairs from Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania, and a B.S. in Accounting from the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire. She became a Certified Public Accountant in 1998.

Ravi Venkataraman, CFA, is a senior managing director and global head of Investment Solutions for MFS Investment Management (MFS). He leads a global team dedicated to working with clients to develop solutions, asset allocation strategy and portfolio construction, as well as to provide views on capital markets, industry trends and MFS investment platform insights. He is also responsible for MFS’ thought leadership efforts globally. He serves on the Global Distribution Management Committee and chairs the MFS Retirement Investment Committee. Venkataraman earned a B.A. in economics from St. Xavier’s College and his M.A. in economics from Tufts University. He chairs the Steering Committee of the IAA’s Active Managers Council.

R. Kelly Williams, Jr. is President, Chief Operating Officer of Atlanta Capital Management Company, LLC and Chairman of its Management Committee. Through Atlanta Capital’s relationship as an affiliate of Morgan Stanley Investment Management and previously Eaton Vance, Williams serves on the EV Enterprise Risk Management Committee and Diversity & Inclusion Leadership Council. He serves on the IAA Board of Governors and on the Investment Committee of the Holy Innocents’ Episcopal School in Atlanta, Georgia. Prior to joining Atlanta Capital, Williams worked as a Senior Accountant, Consultant and CPA with Arthur Andersen, LLP in Atlanta. He earned a B.S. in accounting from Auburn University and his MBA from Emory University.

Charles Zambri is Chief Operating Officer and Chief Compliance Officer at Boston Financial Management. As COO, he is responsible for day-to-day operations, technology infrastructure, and executing the firm’s strategy. He also has oversight of all client service policies and procedures. As CCO, Zambri administers the compliance program and keeps the firm informed of all pertinent regulatory matters. He joined Boston Financial Management in 2014 after seven years at State Street Bank and Trust. Zambri earned his B.S. degree in Business Administration from Saint Michael’s College, followed by an M.B.A. and M.S. in Finance from Boston College’s Carroll School of Management.

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