2017 Leadership Conference Speaker Biographies
Richard Adler is the founder of Red Arrow Capital, a strategic consulting practice serving investment and wealth management firms. He has two decades of experience successfully investing in, and managing, investment management firms — navigating multiple market downturns, financial crises, and CEO transitions. Previously, Rick was CEO and President of Convergent Capital Management (CCM), a multi-affiliate boutique investment management firm he co-founded in 1995. Rick serves on the Boards of Clifford Swan Investment Counsel and SKBA Capital Management. He is also a member of the Investment Adviser Association Board of Governors. He has a BA in Sociology and Psychology from the University of Michigan and an MBA in Finance from Indiana University.
Karen L. Barr is President & CEO of the Investment Adviser Association. Before assuming this role in 2014, she served as the IAA's General Counsel for 17 years, with responsibility for the wide range of legal and regulatory matters affecting the Association and its members. Prior to joining the IAA, Karen was in private practice at Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering (now WilmerHale), where she represented clients with respect to SEC investigations, securities class action litigation, internal corporate investigations, and securities regulatory matters. Karen received her BA, magna cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania and her law degree, cum laude, from the University of Michigan Law School. She is a frequent speaker on investment adviser issues.
Peter J. Boyle has served as President of Clifford Swan Investment Counselors since 2001, and as Chief Investment Officer since 2010. An Investment Counselor since 1992 when he joined the firm, Peter has an extensive background in tax and estate planning and is a valued resource to all counselors and clients in these areas.
Before joining the firm, Peter served as a Senior Trust Officer with Security Pacific National Bank. His active community involvement includes serving with the Tournament of Roses Association, as a member of the Pasadena Rotary Club, and on the Investment Committee for the Pasadena Police & Fire Pension. Peter is a member of the Twilight Club, Young Presidents' Organization and Trustee of Polytechnic School. He is also a member of the Investment Adviser Association Board of Governors.
Steven Bregman is the President of Horizon Kinetics, a co-founder of the Firm, and Head of Research. As one of the largest independent research firms, Horizon focuses on structurally inefficient market sectors, including domestic spin-offs, global spin-offs (The Spin-Off Report and Global Spin-Off Report), distressed debt (Contrarian Fixed Income) and short sale candidates (Devil’s Advocate), among others. Horizon Kinetics has also taken an interest in creating functionally improved indexes, such as the Spin-Off Indexes and the Wealth Indexes (which incorporate the owner-operator return variable) and effective, non-correlated alternative asset classes. Steve is also the President and CFO of FRMO Corp., a publicly traded company with interests in Horizon Kinetics. He received a BA from Hunter College, and his CFA® Charter in 1989. Steve has authored a variety of papers, notably Spin-offs Revisited: A Review of a Structural Pricing Anomaly (1996) and Equity Strategies and Inflation (2012).
Paul Erhardt is Founder and Managing Member of Investment Business Advisors LLC (IBA), a strategic advisory and management consulting firm serving global long-only and alternative investment managers (Private Equity, Real Estate, Hedge Fund, Fund of Hedge Funds, Commodities firms). IBA specializes in advising GP asset manager firm C-Suite executives regarding firm and fund assessments, strategic initiatives, overall firm effectiveness, efficiency and transparency, meeting the expectations of institutional investors, regulators and global asset manager Best Practice standards and implementing "Lessons Learned" from the 2008-09 global financial crisis.
Paul has 30+ years of experience in executive leadership and strategic advisory roles. Prior to founding IBA, Paul served as Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer of several global asset management firms including Arden Asset Management, Legg Mason International Equities, Citigroup Asset Management, London, American Century Investment Management and Aeltus Investment Management (Aetna subsidiary). He also served as Strategic Advisor to Landmark Partners and held senior investment department and other roles at CIGNA Corporation.
Paul received his B.A from St. Bonaventure University, was a graduate Mid-Career Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University and completed the Advanced Management Programme Templeton College, Oxford University. Paul currently participates in the Georgetown University Senior Auditor Program in the History and International Affairs Departments.
David M. Goldstein joined Willis Towers Watson in Boston as the New England Regional Executive Risks Practice Leader in 2006, bringing more than 10 years of industry experience to his responsibility for business development, marketing, managing and servicing Executive Risks accounts. In 2012, Dave transitioned to focus his attention full time on client advocacy and business development. Now, with nearly 20 years of industry experience, Dave is widely recognized as an authority in the Management and Professional Liability fields, with a special focus on asset and alternative asset management, investment companies, banking, and other financial institution accounts.
Prior joining Willis, Dave served as Vice President in the Management Liability Underwriting Division of American International Group, Inc. (AIG) in Boston. In that capacity, Dave led a team of underwriters managing a book of over $50M in management liability premium. Prior to his underwriting management position, Dave served as Divisional Counsel in AIG's legal department where he drafted management liability products, handled regulatory matters, and provided legal support to underwriters on complex national accounts.
Jilliene Helman is the founder and CEO of RealtyMogul.com. A former Vice President at Union Bank in Wealth Management and Risk Management, Jilliene made her first million dollars when she was just 27 years old.
Driven by her family background in entrepreneurship and personal goal to help others create personal wealth through real estate, Jilliene launched RealtyMogul.com in 2013. RealtyMogul.com's mission is to make commercial real estate investment opportunities available online to everyone. Thus far, RealtyMogul.com has facilitated over $260 million in real estate investments and grown to over 125,000 registered investors around the country. Jilliene brings her passion for creating unparalleled access to new opportunities through technology as she works to revolutionize how Americans use their money to generate passive income.
Recently named Fintech Woman of the Year at the LendIt Industry Awards, Jilliene has been featured as an expert in Bloomberg, CNBC, The New York Times, Yahoo! Finance, Entrepreneur, and has been included in the Forbes Top 30 Under 30 List. Jilliene holds Series 7, 24 and 63 investment licenses and is a Certified Wealth Strategist.
Ken Hoffman is Managing Director and President of the Optima Group. He has more than 30 years’ experience in wealth and asset management, helping U.S. and global financial services organizations build, implement, and manage their growth strategies. As a leader in the field, Ken has led client teams focused on new product development, sales and marketing enhancements, systems and operational efficiencies, and branding. The objective of Optima Group’s work is to identify and implement solutions that have the greatest impact. Ken helps clients by focusing on both organic and inorganic growth strategies, including successful projects in capital sourcing, mergers and acquisitions, divestitures, and organizational design. He holds a B.A. from Claremont McKenna College and a M.S. from Yale University.
Clarence H. King, III, CFA, CIC (K.C.) is a Managing Director and Portfolio Manager with Boston Financial Management. K.C. manages the portfolios of individuals, families and institutions, and works with the executive management team on firm strategy and goals.
Prior to joining Boston Financial Management in 2016, K.C. was a Managing Director and Portfolio Manager with Emerson Investment Management, and held senior roles at Middleton & Company, Scudder, Stevens & Clark, and Morgan Guaranty Trust.
K.C. is a graduate of Harvard College.
Paul Leibowitz is President, Chief Creative Officer and Owner of Leibowitz Branding and Design. He oversees integrated brand, print, digital and e-marketing strategies for a variety of clients in financial services, education, media and healthcare. Paul is an associate member of the Investment Adviser Association, a corporate partner of the Mutual Fund Education Alliance (MFEA) and a member of the American Institute of Graphic Artists (AIGA). He has lectured at Columbia Business School and Syracuse University on entrepreneurism and branding. In addition, Paul has been a professor of Professional Practice at Syracuse University School of Design, where he taught Branding and Communications Design.
Mara Liasson is the national political correspondent for NPR and a contributor to FOX News Channel (FNC). She joined FOX in 1997 and serves as a panelist on Special Report with Brett Baier and FOX News Sunday, FOX Broadcasting Company's public affairs program that airs nationwide each Sunday morning.
Mara joined NPR in 1985 as a general assignment reporter and newscaster. She covered Congress and served as the White House correspondent during all eight years of the Clinton administration. Now, as the national political correspondent her reports can be heard on the award-winning newsmagazines, All Things Considered and Morning Edition. During her tenure, she has covered the all the presidential elections since 1992 and reports on Senate and House races every election year. She is an expert on elections, national policy and on relations between the White House and Congress.
She received a Bagehot Fellowship in Economics and Business Journalism. From September 1988-June 1989, she took a leave of absence to attend Columbia University in New York. Shortly thereafter, she returned to NPR as its congressional correspondent.
She has received numerous awards and honors for her reporting, including the White House Correspondents' Association's "Merriman Smith Award" in 1994, 1995 and 1997 for excellence in daily news reporting.
Mara earned her bachelor's degree from Brown University.
Ross Marrazzo, Managing Director of Treliant Risk Advisors, has more than 33 years of domestic and international experience in the design, oversight and assessment of corporate and regulatory compliance, Bank Secrecy Act (BSA)/Anti-Money Laundering (AML), sanctions and fraud programs, and internal controls. Ross possesses a thorough knowledge of executive and operating functions and responsibilities within public companies and the financial services industry, including consumer and commercial banking, investment banking, insurance, and wealth management.
Over the span of his career, Ross has held senior leadership positions in a regulatory compliance capacity with a range of financial institutions – including GE Capital, the DTCC and Citigroup – law firms, and the New York State Securities Division. He has extensive experience in remediating regulatory issues and in working with U.S. state and federal regulators, including the Fed, OCC, CFPB, SEC, and FINRA, along with state banking, securities, and insurance regulators.
Leland Russell is a thought leader on 21st century leadership. He is the founder of GEO Group Strategic Services and the primary architect of the GEO Group's three leadership systems: FastTime® Leadership, Collective Intelligence and Executive Coaching. Leland's book, Winning In FastTime®, has been enthusiastically endorsed by many top corporate and non-profit executives, senior military leaders and best-selling authors.
As a Strategic Advisor, Executive coach and Leadership Speaker, Leland's clients have included firms like Agilent Technologies, Dunkin Brands, McDonald's, Motorola, Texas Instruments and Weyerhaeuser, as well as many mid-size firms. His typical clients are CEOs, heads of business units, corporate functions and top teams who face tough leadership challenges and want fast breakthrough performance.
Leland focuses on designing solutions to the 21st century leadership challenge ranked number one by CEOs worldwide — Execution Excellence.
John C. Siciliano leads PwC's global strategy practice in the asset management industry. His expertise is in defining strategic, business and operational challenges; outlining and assessing potential solutions; and leading management teams to agreement on and implementation of business strategies.
John has over 30 years experience in the financial services industry as a senior executive at several prominent global financial institutions. Prior to joining PwC, John was CEO of the six independent money management firms, with $100 billion in AUM, owned by New York Life, and led the company's entry into the Fund of Hedge Funds business with the acquisition of Private Advisors in Richmond, Virginia.Prior to joining New York Life Investments, John held executive positions at Grail Partners LLC, BKF Capital Group, Payden & Rygel, Prudential and Smith Barney.
John has a B.A. from Pomona College and an M.B.A. from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business. He serves on the Board of Leaders at the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California and the Board of Directors of the Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena, CA.
Susan Silma, LLB, MBA, is a regulatory and communication expert with a passion for the client experience. She provides strategic and practical advice to financial services clients on regulatory, compliance and governance issues. In her former role as a senior securities regulator — Director of Compliance and Registrant Regulation and Director of Investment Funds for the Ontario Securities Commission — Susan was the architect of Canada's radical new approach to investment transparency and disclosure, known as Client Relationship Model Phase 2 (CRM2). As a Co-Founder and Partner at Canada's CRM2 Navigator, Susan has adopted an innovative approach to complex regulatory compliance that goes beyond straightforward disclosure. Her solutions equip advisers to effectively communicate their value to clients, build trust, and grow their practices.
Maria Smith began her advisor career at Smith Affiliated Capital Corp. in 1984. In 2004, Maria founded Intuitive Strategies Consulting LLC, an independent consulting firm specializing in strategic business development, operational risk management, and forensic consulting. She returned to SAC in 2011 as Managing Director and a member of SAC's Board of Directors. She is a principal owner of Smith Affiliated Capital Corp., a wholly owned subsidiary of Smith Affiliated Ventures LLC (SAV). Her core duties include the oversight of SAC's risk management strategies as they relate to investments, operations, and SAC's strategic growth.
In addition to her duties at SAC, Maria currently serves on the Board of Trustees at the Museum of American Finance. She has held several key board positions with the Investment Advisor Association in Washington D.C. and as a member of the Global Investment Performance Standards (GIPS) Board for the CFA Institute, where she actively participated with regulators and industry professionals in developing global performance standards for the investment industry. She is a member of the Northeast Women in Public Finance as well as the New England Association for Financial Professionals. Maria earned a BA in Business Administration from Marymount Manhattan College and an Executive MBA from the Zicklin School of Business at Baruch College/CUNY.
Eugene F. Soltes, Ph. D is the Jakurski Family Associate Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School and author of Why They Do It, a breakthrough look at what motivates white-collar crime. His research — which focuses on financial fraud, corporate malfeasance and how to design compliance systems to help mitigate misconduct — has been cited by the Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, USA Today, and Bloomberg News. Professor Soltes teaches in Harvard Business School's executive education programs and is the recipient of the Charles M. Williams Award for Outstanding Teaching. He received his PhD and MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and degrees in statistics and economics from Harvard University.
Eldon Sprickerhoff is the Founder of eSentire and serves as its Chief Security Strategist. In founding eSentire, Eldon responded to the incipient yet rapidly growing demand for a more proactive approach to preventing and investigating information security breaches. Now with over 20 years of tactical experience, he is acknowledged as a subject matter expert in information security analysis. Eldon holds a Bachelor of Mathematics, Computer Science degree from the University of Waterloo.
Jonathan Stern, CFA, is Managing Director at Berkshire Capital. He joined the firm in 1998, and during his career there he has completed transactions involving institutional asset management, mutual fund, wealth management, and securities firms. Jon currently co-heads the firm's institutional and mutual funds practice areas.
Jon brings extensive transaction experience in financial services to Berkshire Capital assignments. Prior to joining Berkshire Capital, Jon had spent his entire career at First Union and a predecessor bank, First Fidelity Bancorporation, beginning in 1984. He has extensive experience in the corporate finance area focusing on M&A and capital planning, and was a Senior Vice President responsible for acquisitions and divestitures in the Northern part of First Union's franchise. Previously, he held other management roles within the finance division including asset/liability management and accounting & reporting.
Jon graduated from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania with a BS degree in Economics and received an MBA in Finance from Rutgers University. He is also a CFA charterholder.
Elizabeth B. Sukay is a senior placement specialist in the FINEX Financial Institutions Practice at Willis Towers Watson, with over 11 years of experience in the insurance and finance industries. In this role, she advises some of the firm's largest and most complex financial institution clients on the Management Liability lines of coverage: Directors & Officers, Errors & Omissions, Employment Practices, Fiduciary, Fidelity and Cyber. Liz is also responsible for the team's Cyber and Fidelity thought leadership, providing strategic advice and developing creative risk solutions for current and prospective clients.
Prior to joining Willis in 2016, she worked for CNA Insurance as a Financial Institutions underwriter on Management Liability lines of coverage. While at CNA she held a number of management roles, most recently as Team Leader for the Bank and Insurance underwriting team in New York and designated Cyber Liability Lead for the Northeast Zone. Liz has also held similar roles at Chubb in the Financial Institutions Management and Professional Liability Practice.
Linda Davis Taylor is the CEO and Chairman of Clifford Swan Investment Counsel in Pasadena, California. A participant in a fourth generation family business, Linda is a frequent speaker on wealth transition, family governance, and philanthropy. In addition to her investment counsel career, she has had over 25 years experience in senior leadership positions at Emory University, Claremont McKenna College, Amherst College, and Scripps College. Linda has served as a trustee for numerous educational and non-profit organizations, and is a co-founder of a private foundation. She and her husband are the parents of two adult daughters.
Mike Veeck has had a long and successful career as an advertising, marketing and promotions executive, as owner and operator of three successful minor league baseball teams, and as founder of the business consulting firm Fun Is Good — Employee Engagement Consultants, which specializes in improving profits and performance by creating a fun work environment for employees. His business philosophy has garnered national attention, with Mike being featured on NBC Nightly News, 60 Minutes, HBO Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel, ESPN Sports Center and many other national media outlets. He is the author of two acclaimed books, Fun is Good and Another Boring, Derivative, Piece of Crap Business Book.
Anita Venkiteswaran is a Principal at Focus Financial Partners, where she is responsible for business development, relationship management and acquisition activities. She also manages the Focus Successions program, which provides advisors with a viable business continuity plan for the future.
Prior to joining Focus, Anita worked at CI Capital Partners, a middle market-focused private equity firm based in New York. She was responsible for sourcing, evaluating and structuring transactions, coordinating and conducting due diligence and monitoring the investments post-acquisition. Earlier, Anita worked at Audax Private Equity in Boston, where as part of the investment team she analyzed new investment opportunities and worked on improving existing portfolio companies. She started her career at McKinsey & Company, where she helped clients across industries devise and implement strategic and operational initiatives.
Anita received her MBA from Harvard Business School and her B. Tech in Biotechnology & Biochemical Engineering with honors from I.I.T Kharagpur, India.
Michael J. Waters is Co-Chair of the Vedder Price Privacy, CyberSecurity & Media group. He handled one of the first data breach matters shortly after California passed its breach notification law in 2003 and has since counseled clients across industries through nearly every conceivable type of breach, from system-wide malware attacks and missing laptops to employee thefts, snooping and misdirected communications.
Michael regularly assists companies in investigations opened by enforcement agencies post-data breach, including investigations by State Attorneys General, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights, and state and federal financial, insurance and education enforcement agencies.
He also assists clients in managing the privacy risks associated with maintaining and transferring information. This includes counseling clients on statutory and contractual data protection requirements, drafting privacy related policies and procedures, and providing board counseling and employee training.
He has earned the designation Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP/US) through the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP), and he is a member of IAPP, InfraGard (a partnership between the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the private sector) and the Chicago Bar Association's Cyber Law & Data Privacy Committee.
He was selected for inclusion from 2009 to 2017 as an Illinois Rising Star by Super Lawyers, and was also recognized as an Emerging Lawyer by Leading Lawyers in 2017.
Dale Weiss is a Senior Vice President at the nationally known strategic communications firm CommCore Consulting Group. Dale has a 25-year career spanning media, public affairs, politics and communication training. Since the 1990s, he has been counseling clients on presentation skills, crisis preparedness, media and meeting facilitation skills for corporate CEOs and executives across a wide range of businesses. Companies he has worked with include General Motors, Texas Instruments, General Electric, Sanofi, Johnson & Johnson and Proctor & Gamble. Dale is also Practice Leader of CommCore's PressureTest™ Crisis Simulations. Earlier in his career, Dale was a vice president of corporate communications for a global pharmaceutical company, directing communications programs across the world to help drive sales, enhance the company's reputation, and further open the lines of internal communications. Dale has also worked with Members of Congress and two White House Administrations in communications and message development.
Jane Williams is Chair and Co-Founder of Sand Hill Global Advisors. She advances the business development goals and advises on the strategic direction of the firm. She sits on the Executive Committee and is responsible for oversight of Sand Hill's compliance function. Jane participates in industry panels and organizations dealing with topics of best business practices; she is a member of the Fidelity Investment Advisors' Council, and is Chair of the Board of Governors of the Investment Adviser Association.
With over 38 years of experience in the investment field, Jane is recognized as an expert for the work she has done with individuals — particularly women — and couples in financial transition. Serving the family court as a qualified expert in several San Francisco Bay Area counties, she testifies on topics ranging from prudent investment strategies, rate of return, and related financial topics.
Jane has been active in a variety of non-profit efforts during her career. She served for seven years as a Board member of the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, and its predecessor, Peninsula Community Foundation, chairing the Investment Committee for most of her tenure. She served as a Trustee for the University of California-Santa Barbara Foundation, and was a member of the Investment, Finance, and Executive Committees. Currently, Jane serves on the Advisory Board for Ravenswood Family Health Center in East Palo Alto, and is a member of the Palo Alto Medical Foundation Philanthropy Advisors Council.
In October 2010, Jane received the Charles Schwab & Co. IMPACT® 2010 Leadership Award. In addition, Jane has been listed as one of the 100 Most Influential Women in Business in the San Francisco Bay Area by the San Francisco Business Times and San Jose/Silicon Valley Business Journal. She was named to the Top 50 Women in Wealth by Wealth Manager Magazine in May 2010. Jane was named to the Barron's List of Top Women Financial Advisors in the nation in both 2014 and 2015. In September 2014, she was honored by the Palo Alto Chamber of Commerce with the Athena Award, which recognizes the achievements of outstanding professional and business women.
Jane holds a BS in Economics from Boston University where she was a member of the Economics Honor Society.