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Hedge Fund Investor Leadership Conference

November 5-6, 2018  |  New York City

2018 Speakers

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Leading Hedge Fund Allocators

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50 South Capital

Greg Jones, CFA, Vice President Hedge Funds

Greg Jones is a Research Analyst for 50 South Capital's Hedge Fund Investment Team. He focuses on sourcing and monitoring global macro, relative value, and systematic hedge fund investments.  Prior to joining 50 South Capital, he was employed at Cliffwater LLC, where he was a Vice President on the firm's hedge fund research team. At Cliffwater, he was responsible for sourcing and performing due diligence on hedge fund managers, with a focus on the global macro family of strategies, including discretionary global macro, systematic global macro, CTAs, currency, and commodity hedge fund strategies. Prior to attending business school, Greg was an IT consultant for a boutique technology solutions firm. Greg received a BS in decision and information sciences from the University of Florida and an MBA from the University of Southern California. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst and a member of the CFA Institute. 

Aberdeen Standard Investments

Kevin Lyons, Senior Investment Manager

Kevin Lyons is a Senior Investment Manager on the Hedge Funds Solutions Team and head of credit and fixed income strategies. Kevin joined Aberdeen in 2012 from Attalus Capital where he was a senior analyst covering relative value strategies. Prior to Attalus, Kevin worked for Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs within their Prime Brokerage groups. Kevin graduated with a BSc in Finance from University of Scranton and an MBA with a concentration in Finance from Fordham University.

Advanced Portfolio Management

Robert E. Kiernan III, Chief Executive Officer

Robert E. Kiernan III is the Chief Executive Officer of Advanced Portfolio Management LLC (APM), an investment management company based in New York City. Before founding APM, Mr. Kiernan spent nearly two decades in the capital markets with Salomon Brothers and Lehman Brothers, during which he was responsible for building, managing, and leading multiple global fixed income and investment banking businesses.

Prior to his capital markets career, Mr. Kiernan held several foreign policy positions in the first Reagan administration including appointments at USIA, the National Security Council, and the Department of State. He was also a member of the US Delegation to the United Nations Human Rights Commission.

Mr. Kiernan received an AB magna cum laude and an AM with distinction from the four-year AB/AM program at Boston College, and an MBA from the University of Chicago where he was a First National Bank Scholar. He also has studied as a graduate student at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and the University of Cambridge, and has been a Senior Fellow at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University where he led a seminar and research project onsocially responsible investing (SRI).

Currently, Mr. Kiernan serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Educate Girls Globally, and
as a member of the Advisory Board of the Center on Capitalism and Society at Columbia University, the Research Foundation Review Board of the CFA Institute, the Royal Institute of International Affairs (London), and the Council on Foreign Relations.

Alternative Investment Group

David K. Storrs, President & Chief Executive Officer

David K. Storrs is President and Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of Alternative Investment Group.

David is a member of the firm’s Management Committee.  David was formerly Trustee, Executive Vice President, and President of Commonfund, a multi-billion investment management organization serving endowments, foundations, and other non-profit institutions and led the formation of its alternative investment programs, including hedge funds, from 1982 to 1996. Prior to this, he was   Vice President with responsibility for international consulting at Rogers, Casey & Barksdale and RCB Trust Company from 1984 to 1986. David was a senior financial officer and the first Director of Investments at Yale University, from 1971 to 1984, where he restructured the endowment by introducing alternative asset classes. 

David holds an A.B. from Yale University as well as an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.  He was a Trustee and member of the Finance Committee of TIAA-CREF (1994-2002) and a Director and member of the Finance Committee of the Alliance Capital money market funds (1988-2005).


Chris Walvoord, Partner, Global Head of Hedge Fund Research

Chris leads Aon Hewitt’s Global Liquid Alternatives Team within Global Investment Management.  He oversees research and investment activities across a variety of liquid alternative strategies including hedge funds, currencies, CTAs, and GTAA.  His group is responsible for researching, recommending and monitoring managers for both advisory and delegated client portfolios. Prior to joining AHIC in 2016, Chris was a portfolio manager and a member of the investment committee at William Blair.  Chris was the lead PM for the custom hedge fund business at Blair which managed client specific portfolios for large institutional clients.  He was also the lead PM on the group’s 40 Act fund of hedge funds.  Chris worked extensively with William Blair’s distribution team to help clients understand the role of hedge funds within their investment portfolios.  

William Blair entered the fund of hedge funds business by acquiring Guidance Capital, a fund of hedge funds firm founded in 2001, where Chris was one of five equity partners.  As a member of the investment committee at Guidance he was involved in both hedge fund research and portfolio construction.  He also developed the portfolio risk management system that was used at both Guidance and William Blair.

Prior to joining Guidance Capital, Chris managed an unconstrained bond strategy at the Northern Trust.  The mandates for these funds allowed investments in a wide range of fixed income instruments including corporate and asset backed bonds, swaps, options, futures, and other interest rate and credit derivatives.  Chris began his investment career in the Capital Markets Strategies Group at Nuveen where he assisted investment banking clients with their derivative transactions.  Prior to Nuveen Chris worked as an automotive engineer in Motorola’s Automotive Electronics Group and in Ford’s Advanced Vehicle Engineering Group.

Chris earned an M.B.A. degree in finance from The University of Chicago Booth School of Business, an M.S in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California Berkeley and a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Illinois.

Aptitude Investment Management

Jeffrey Klein, Deputy Chief Investment Officer & Chief Executive Officer

Jeff is a founding partner of Aptitude Investment Management LP. In his role as Deputy Chief Investment Officer and Chief Executive Officer, he is responsible for investment strategy and governance, hedge fund portfolio construction, and conducting asset allocation and asset liability studies. He is also responsible for Aptitude’s business strategy and overall operations. Jeff has 27 years of investment experience.

Prior to his role with Aptitude Investment Management LP, Jeff served in a similar role as the Portfolio Manager and Deputy Chief Investment Officer of Weyerhaeuser Asset Management LLC since 2004. In that capacity, he developed guidelines and conducted asset allocation and asset liability studies that led to pension trust investment structure and policy. He was responsible for integration, revision and development of the hedge fund portfolio from externally managed to internally managed.

Prior to joining Weyerhaeuser Company, Jeff was the National Practice Director for Watson Wyatt Investment Consulting in Canada. He had previously served as a Senior Consultant and Practice Leader as well as a Pension and Investment Consultant with Watson Wyatt Investment Consulting in Canada. Before joining Watson Wyatt Investment Consulting in Canada, Jeff held positions with Southern Life Association in Cape Town, South African and with Legal and General Assurance Company in Johannesburg, South Africa. 

Jeff holds a Bachelor of Business Science with Honours from the University of Cape Town, South Africa, a Certificate of Finance and Investment from the Institute of Actuaries, UK, and is a Fellow of the Institute of Actuaries, London, and Canadian Institute of Actuaries.



Michael Pierog, Managing Director & Head of the Strategic Alliance Fund

Michael Pierog is a Managing Director and Head of the Strategic Alliance Fund (“SAF”) Group, Blackstone’s hedge fund seeding business, for the Hedge Fund Solutions Group. Prior to joining the SAF Group, Mr. Pierog was head of Credit Strategies in BAAM, where he was involved in hedge fund manager evaluation, selection, and monitoring as well as structured and corporate credit investments. Before joining Blackstone in 2013, Mr. Pierog was a Vice President in the Distressed and Special Situations group at Barclays Capital. Prior to working at Barclays, Mr. Pierog was an associate at Davidson Kempner Capital Management. Mr. Pierog received a BA in Economics from Amherst College where he graduated cum laude and an MBA from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.

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C.M. Capital Advisors

Keith Seibert, Managing Director, Hedge Funds & Public Markets

Mr. Seibert leads C.M. Capital Advisors’ investment activities in hedge funds and public securities, and serves on the firm’s Investment Committee. Mr. Seibert has over ten years of experience of investing in hedge funds primarily in a family office setting – first as a Founding Partner and Head of Research at LyonRoss Capital Management, a multi-family office, and as Deputy Chief Investment Officer at AI International, a single-family office. Prior to joining C.M. Capital, Mr. Seibert was a senior investment officer at an equity-focused fund of hedge funds in New York City. Prior to his direct hedge fund investing experience, Mr. Seibert was an Executive Director at Morgan Stanley where he held management roles within multiple divisions. Mr. Seibert earned his MBA in Finance and International Business at New York University, a Master of International Affairs degree at Columbia University and a Bachelor’s degree in Government from Wesleyan University.

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Cambridge Associates

Jon Hansen, Managing Director

Jon Hansen is a Managing Director in the Boston office of Cambridge Associates.  In his current role, Jon works with non-profit and family clients on both discretionary and advisory relationships.  Jon oversees total portfolios for which he helps define investment objectives, establish asset allocation guidelines and implement manager exposure.  Jon also specializes in alternative investments, working with clients to optimize exposure to hedge funds and other differentiated investment structures.  Jon previously worked in Cambridge Associates’ research group where he was responsible for sourcing and monitoring managers across alternative investment strategies.  Jon has written numerous research reports on performance and industry trends, and also is a regular contributor to news articles on the investment landscape.  Prior to Cambridge Associates, Jon worked for Pearson Prentice Hall and the Houghton Mifflin Company.  Jon received his undergraduate degree from Bucknell University and earned his MBA from the Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland. 


Chris Solarz, CFA, Managing Director

Chris is a Managing Director of Cliffwater LLC in our New York office and a member of the hedge fund research team. Prior to joining Cliffwater in 2011, Chris was a Senior Analyst at SAIL Advisors, where he focused on manager selection and due diligence as Head of Research for tactical trading and relative value strategies. Previous experience includes working for ING Investment Management, Antarctica Asset Management, Societe Generale Barr Devlin, and CIBC World Markets. 

He earned a BA in Economics and Anthropology from the University of Pennsylvania and a MComm in Finance from the University of New South Wales, where he was a Federation Scholar. Chris is a Certified Public Accountant, holds the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst® designation, the Chartered Financial Analyst® designation, and is a member of the New York Society of Security Analysts.  Chris has broken 6 Guinness World Records, has run marathons on all 7 continents and in all 50 US states.  

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DiMeo Schneider & Associates

Anthony M. Novara Managing Director

Anthony joined DiMeo Schneider & Associates, L.L.C. in 2011. Anthony directs the firm’s Hedge Fund research effort and chairs the firm’s Capital Markets committee. He is a member of the firm’s Investment Committee, Discretionary Committee and all Research Teams. Prior to joining the firm, Anthony held various roles at National City, Conversus Asset Management and William Blair & Company. Anthony received a BA in Finance from the Eli Broad College of Business at Michigan State University and a MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business with concentrations in Analytic Finance, Economics & Entrepreneurship. He is a CFA® charterholder and member of the CFA Society Chicago and CFA Institute. Anthony is actively involved with YearUp, a nonprofit providing urban young adults with the skills, experience and support to pursue professional careers and higher education. He is also on the Advisory Board for the Michigan State University Financial Markets Institute. In his free time, Anthony enjoys playing guitar, golf, running after his two young sons and all things Michigan State Spartans.

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EMM Wealth

Salvatore Russo, Senior Vice President, Head of Research

Salvatore joined EMM Wealth in 2010 and is a partner of the firm.  He serves as the firm’s Head of Research and is a member of the Investment Committee.  In this role, he works closely with the firm’s Chief Investment Officer and Investment Committee members to formulate the research team priorities.  His responsibilities include overseeing the process for identifying, evaluating and conducting due diligence of prospective funds, and monitoring existing investments. 

Prior to joining EMM Wealth, Salvatore served as a Director for Tremont Capital Management, Inc. where he researched various hedge funds strategies for the firm’s discretionary portfolio business.  He joined the firm in 2003 as head of operational risk and built out an independent team and process for assessing hedge fund operations before joining the research group.  Previously, he served as Assistant Vice President for JP Morgan where he spent nearly ten years providing investment consulting services to large corporate and public pension plan sponsors. Salvatore received a B.S. in Finance from University of Scranton and an M.B.A. in Finance and International Business from New York University.

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Fairfax County Police Officers' Retirement Systems

Katherine Molnar, CFA, CIO

Ms. Molnar joined Fairfax County Retirement Systems in 2013 as a Senior Investment Officer responsible for managing the Fairfax County Police Officers Retirement System, a $1.3 billion plan. Her responsibilities include all aspects of portfolio management and oversight, including strategic and tactical asset and risk allocation, selection and supervision of external investment managers and risk management. From 2001 until 2012, Ms. Molnar was Vice President, Senior Research Analyst at AIG Investments’ Hedge Fund Solutions Group – both in London and New York. At AIG Investments, Ms. Molnar was responsible for due diligence procedures and research including: sourcing new managers, monitoring current hedge funds, analyzing portfolio risk and performance, making new investment recommendations to an investment committee as well as hedge fund asset allocation recommendations for portfolio construction. She was additionally responsible for portfolio reviews and overall asset allocation recommendations for external client portfolios. Previously, she was Vice President, Market Research Analyst at Citigroup Investments’ Alternative Investment Strategies group. Prior investment management experience includes positions at Paribas Asset Management as well as Trevor Stewart Burton & Jacobsen. Additionally, Ms. Molnar spent one year in Warsaw, Poland launching the first retail mutual funds available to the Polish market as well as two years in Frankfurt, Germany as an intern with J.P. Morgan. Ms. Molnar received a B.S. in Business Administration/Finance from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is a CFA charterholder.

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Hawaii Employees' Retirement System

Howard Hodel, CFA, Deputy CIO

Mr. Hodel is an Investment Officer and Risk Manager for the State of Hawai’i Employees’ Retirement System (HIERS), reporting to the Chief Investment Officer (CIO).  His role involves assessing the risks associated with HIERS investments, strategies and processes, as well as overseeing the diversifying strategies portfolio. From March through September 2018, in addition to his other duties, he served as the Acting CIO. 

Prior to joining HIERS in March 2014, Mr. Hodel provided financial, investment and energy consulting services to institutional clients in Hawaii and on the mainland.  Previously, Mr. Hodel headed Bank of Hawaii’s $8 billion Asset Management Group.  Prior to joining the Bank of Hawaii, Mr. Hodel worked 15 years at Bank of America, where he established and headed the analytics and market risk unit assigned to the Bank’s $250 billion Asset Management Group, and served in the Bank’s Treasury Department as a market risk manager, planning manager, and mergers and acquisitions manager.  He spent nine years at British Petroleum (Amoco and Sohio), where he held various financial, economic, and planning positions.  

Mr. Hodel received an A.B. Magna Cum Laude with High Distinction in Economics from Dartmouth College, as well as an M.B.A with Distinction in Statistics and International Business Management from the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium while on fellowship from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, where he earned an M.B.A. in Finance and Accounting and was a member of Beta Gamma Sigma honor society.  He received his CFA Charter designation in October 2006.  He is currently the president of the CFA Society Hawaii and a member of Dartmouth’s Alumni Council.

Helmsley Charitable Trust

Warren Tye, CFA, Investment Officer

Warren Tye is an Investment Officer at the Helmsley Charitable Trust. He is responsible for thematic research, manager research, investment due diligence, and portfolio construction within traditional long only, hedge fund, private equity, and venture capital segments of the Trust’s investment program.

Prior to joining Helmsley, Warren was with Optima Fund Management where he managed both commingled and advisory portfolios of hedge funds within a $4.5 billion firm. He also sat on the firm’s asset allocation committee and was responsible for formulating medium term views on equity, fixed income, commodity, and currency markets across all regions. Warren started his career with Kellogg Capital Group as an options market maker on the NYSE and AMEX.

Warren received a B.A. from Hobart College with a concentration in History and Mathematics, and is also a CFA charter holder. He is involved with numerous charitable organizations in and around New York City such as Robin Hood, Trees New York, and the Bronx Charter School.

JP Morgan Alternative Asset Management

Paul Zummo, CFA, Chief Executive Officer & Chief Investment Officer

Mr. Zummo is Chief Executive Officer and Chief Investment Officer of J.P. Morgan Alternative Asset Management Hedge Fund Solutions. He is head of the Portfolio Management Group and lead portfolio manager for the JP Morgan Multi Manager Alternatives Fund, a US Mutual Fund. Mr. Zummo is Chair of the JPMAAM HFS Investment Committee and co-founded JPMAAM HFS in 1994. Prior to that, Mr. Zummo served as the manager of retirement plan investments for the Interpublic Group of Companies from 1992 to 1994, where he was responsible for analysis, asset allocation, and manager selection. From 1990 to 1992, he worked at the former Chase organization as an investment analyst and consultant for institutional clients of the Chase Consulting Group. Mr. Zummo received a B.S. from the State University of New York at Albany and an M.B.A. from New York University. He holds the Chartered Financial Analyst® (CFA) designation and is a member of the CFA Institute.


K2 Advisors

Robert Christian, Senior Managing Director, Head of Investment Research

Robert Christian is a senior managing director and Head of Investment Research. He joined K2 Advisors in May 2010.

From 1990 to 1995 Mr. Christian worked as a global strategist and proprietary trader at Chase Manhattan Futures Corporation. In 1995, he founded Modoc Capital focusing on short term futures trading. In 1997 Modoc entered into a joint venture with Stonebrook Capital Management LLC as a portfolio manager and researcher. From 1998 to 2003 Mr. Christian worked at Graham Capital Management LP as a portfolio manager and researcher of quantitative based trading strategies. From 2003 to 2005 he was the Head of Macro Strategies at Julius Baer Investment Management . From September 2005 to March 2010 he worked at FRM Americas LLC where he was the Global Head of Directional Trading Strategies and portfolio advisor to numerous funds, including the award-winning FRM Sigma.

Mr. Christian holds a B.A.S. in biology and economics from Stanford University (1985) and an M.B.A. in finance from Leonard N. Stern School of Business - New York University (1990).

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LCG Associates

James J. Challen, CFA, CAIA, Senior Vice President / Principal

Mr. Challen joined LCG Associates in 2009 and is a Senior Vice President.  His client relationships include corporations, utilities, endowments, and foundations.  In addition to lead consultant responsibilities, James conducts capital market and asset class research, investment manager due diligence, and special topical studies.
Before joining LCG, James was with Morgan Keegan & Company as First Vice President of the Manager Due Diligence Group.  He was responsible for managing a team that made investment recommendations for institutional and private clients.  Concurrently, James was a Portfolio Manager for Morgan Keegan & Company’s Private Client Discretionary Program.  He previously held several positions with Morgan Keegan & Company including Research Specialist and Research Associate.  James began his career as a Financial Analyst at Remtech Services Inc.

James is a CFA Charterholder and a member of the CFA Society of Atlanta. He is also a Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) Charterholder.  James graduated with a B.S. in Finance from the Leeds School of Business at the University of Colorado.

Lighthouse Partners

Timothy Berry, CFA, Managing Director

Tim identifies investment strategy opportunities and analyzes and monitors portfolio construction and asset allocation for Lighthouse Partners. Tim is a member of the firm’s Investment Committee. Previously, Tim ran the hedge fund investment team at Private Advisors LLC, an institutional alternative investment manager where he invested in hedge fund managers across a broad variety of strategies for 14 years. He was a member of the hedge fund investment committees and the firm’s executive committee. Tim started his investment career at Chesapeake Capital Corporation, a commodity trader, where he analyzed fund performance and performed due diligence on alternative investments on behalf of the principals of the firm. Tim earned a master’s degree from Duke University and graduated with distinction with a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Virginia. He is a CFA charterholder and a member of the CFA Society of Virginia. 

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Lone Peak Partners

Betsy L. Battle, Chief Investment Officer & Founding Partner

Ms. Battle brings almost four decades of financial services and investment experience to Lone Peak Partners.  Most recently, she was Director of Manager Selection and a member of the Management Committee at Soros Fund Management LLC.  Over her eight years there, she not only managed multibillion dollar portfolios of external hedge funds for the Quantum group of funds and George Soros, but also built the manager selection and due diligence processes as well as the multi-manager portfolio construction and monitoring methodologies.  Prior to Soros Fund Management, she held positions at Bankers Trust, Citicorp and JP Morgan, primarily as a manager in Global Sales and Trading.  She currently serves on the Board of Directors of the University of North Carolina Kenan-Flagler Business School Foundation Board, the Board of Directors of the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, and the President’s Council of the Peconic Land Trust.  Ms. Battle received a BA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1976. 

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Makena Capital Management

Jackson Garton CFA, Managing Director

Jackson Garton, a Managing Director, is responsible for manager selection and portfolio construction for Makena's investments in our listed equity asset classes including long-only equity and long/short equity. He is also a member of the asset allocation team where he supports asset allocation and risk management for the firm. Jackson earned an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business where he was an Arjay Miller Scholar and the winner of the Alexander A. Robichek Award for Outstanding Achievement in Finance. Prior to his MBA, Jackson was an Associate on the Asset Allocation team at Makena Capital Management following his role as an Analyst supporting the CIO and liquid asset class teams. Jackson holds a BS degree in Mathematical and Computational Science from Stanford University. Jackson is a CFA charter holder.

Man FRM - Pine Grove Funds

Thomas Williams, CFA, Chief Investment Officer & Founding Partner

Thomas (Tom) Williams is Chief Investment Officer - Pine Grove Funds at Man FRM (‘FRM’), based in New York. He is also a member of FRM’s Investment Committee.

Prior to assuming his current role, Tom was a Managing Member, the Chief Investment Officer and the Head of Investments at Pine Grove Asset Management (now operating as Pine Grove Funds under the FRM business). Prior to this, Tom practiced law in California for three years, specialising in intellectual property and venture capital transaction.

Tom holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Trinity College and a JD from the University of Southern California School of Law. Tom is also a member of the CFA Institute and the New York Society of Security Analysts.

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Meketa Investment Group

Roberto Obregon, Senior Research Analyst

Roberto Obregon is a Senior Research Analyst at Meketa Investment Group. He joined the firm in 2014, under his current role he develops and communicates research and guidance to the firm’s consultants and clients. His responsibilities include asset allocation, risk management, macro-economic research, and investment manager research focusing on marketable alternatives such as global macro and quantitative hedge funds. Roberto received a Master of Finance from MIT Sloan School of Management and a BS cum laude in Applied Mathematics from Universidad Metropolitana in Caracas, Venezuela.

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Neuberger Berman

Ian Haas, CFA, Senior Vice President

Ian Haas, CFA, Senior Vice President, is a member of the Investment Committee and also serves as Head of the Quantitative and Directional Strategy Research on the NBAIM team. His responsibilities include manager sourcing, screening, due diligence, monitoring, and portfolio construction. Prior to joining the team in 2004, Ian was an associate in Lehman Brothers’ portfolio strategy group, where he focused on asset allocation and manager selection. Prior, he was a member of the financial institutions group within the investment banking division of Lehman Brothers, where he worked on M&A advisory projects as well as capital markets financings for clients in the financial services industry. Ian graduated from the University of Oregon, earning a BS in business administration with a concentration in finance. Ian has been awarded the Chartered Financial Analyst designation.

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Nippon Life Global Investors Americas

Eric Golberg, Director, Portfolio Manager

Eric R. Golberg is Director and Portfolio Manager for the Hedge Fund Team at NLGIA. This team is responsible for Nippon Life’s hedge fund and private debt investments.  His responsibilities include manager sourcing, due diligence, selection and portfolio construction.  Eric’s career features a combination of alternative investment industry and Asia-Pacific Japan financial market experience. He was a founding member of Minerva Alternative Strategies Inc. (a wholly owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi Corporation).  At Minerva Eric built multi-manager portfolios for Japanese institutional investors. Prior to joining Mitsubishi, Eric worked at Chemical/Chase/JP Morgan, where he initially spent two years in Tokyo covering Japanese and foreign financial institutions, then eight years in New York City covering hedge funds, CTA’s, fund of funds, and private equity firms. Eric is on the Board of Trustees of the ELCA Endowment Fund and holds a BA in English from Luther College and an MA from the Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs, specializing in the political economy of Japan and East Asia.  

Optima Fund Management

Erik Welle, Partner

Mr. Welle joined Optima in 2007 and currently serves as the firm’s International sector head with responsibility for manager allocations across Europe, Canada and global emerging markets with an emphasis on hedged equity and global macro allocations. Further, Mr. Welle is a member of the firm’s portfolio management committee. Prior to joining Optima, Mr. Welle was an equity analyst at Thompson, Siegel & Walmsley, a $19 billion investment management firm located in Richmond, Virginia. There he was a member of the energy and industrials group and responsible for both fundamental and quantitative analysis.  Mr. Welle is a graduate of Washington and Lee University where he received a B.S. in Business Administration. 


PAAMCO Prisma / Prisma Capital Partners

Jackie B. Rosner, Managing Director, Portfolio Manager

Jackie Rosner joined PAAMCO Prisma (previously KKR Prisma) in 2013 and is a Managing Director and member of the Portfolio Management team, with a specific focus on global macro, relative value, managed futures, and quantitative strategies. Prior to joining Prisma, Mr. Rosner was a Managing Director, head of global macro and systematic trading strategies, and a member of the executive committee at Union Bancaire Privee Asset Management in New York. Prior to UBP, Mr. Rosner was a proprietary trader at BNP Paribas in New York. Mr. Rosner has also been a portfolio manager at both Archeus Capital Management and Millennium Partners, and was a founding member of a proprietary trading desk in the fixed income department of Chase Manhattan Bank/J.P. Morgan. Mr. Rosner began his career at Salomon Brothers (Citibank) where he held various positions of increasing responsibility primarily focused on quant, trading, and fixed income strategies. Mr. Rosner is on the advisory board for the MIT Sloan Department of Finance, volunteers as a master’s thesis supervisor at the Department of Mathematics at NYU Courant, and guest lectures at Columbia University’s Department of Financial Engineering. Mr. Rosner holds a B.S. in Economics, a B.S. in Management Science, and an M.Sc in Management from the Sloan School of Management at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He also holds an M.Sc in Mathematical Finance from New York University and completed the following designations: CFA, CAIA, CMT, and FRM. 

Private Advisors

Charles Honey, Partner

Charles Honey is an Investment Committee member. Charles focuses on sourcing, underwriting, and monitoring of long/short equity investments, including funds and direct equity positions.

Prior to joining Private Advisors, Charles was the Managing Partner of Rapidan Capital, a long/short equity hedge fund that he founded. Prior to Rapidan, Charles held Managing Director roles in the hedge fund groups at Morgens, Waterfall, Vintiadis & Company and at Trainer, Wortham & Company. He began his career as a trader and research analyst for Woodward & Associates, a New York based hedge fund. Charles has over two decades of equity investing experience.

Charles received a B.S. in Business Administration from Washington & Lee University.

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Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Vanita Gaonkar, Public Investments

Vanita W. Gaonkar is an investment officer with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, focused on Public Investments. Prior to joining the Foundation, Vanita was the Director of Research at Ehrenkranz Partners, L.P., where she was responsible for investments across asset classes, including fixed income, equities, hedge funds, private equity and real assets. Before joining Ehrenkranz Partners, L.P. she served as a Director in Alternative Investments at Credit Suisse, where she oversaw investments in long/short equity, event driven credit and emerging markets. Prior to Credit Suisse she worked as an analyst at The Blackstone Group and J.P. Morgan Chase. Ms. Gaonkar earned her BA in Mathematics and Economics from Wesleyan University, Middletown, Conn.

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Alifia Doriwala, Managing Director & Partner

Alifia Doriwala is a Managing Director and Partner at RockCreek. She is a member of the firm’s Investment Committee and is involved in portfolio management, asset allocation and manager selection across alternative and traditional asset classes. RockCreek invests with a number of top-tier public and private managers as well as direct and co-investments on behalf of endowments, foundations, and pension funds. Prior to joining RockCreek, Ms. Doriwala was an Equity Arbitrage Trader at Wolverine Trading, L.P., where she was responsible for analyzing, modeling, and trading equity spreads resulting from corporate transactions. Prior to that, she was an Investment Banking Analyst in Merrill Lynch’s Financial Sponsor Group, where she assessed the suitability of potential targets for private equity portfolio companies. Ms. Doriwala graduated from Georgetown University magna cum laude with a B.A. in Economics and English and holds an M.B.A. in Finance and Marketing from New York University’s Stern School of Business. She is a Trustee Board Member and Member of the Investment and Finance committees at The Langley School.

Russell Investments

Cedric S. Fan, CFA, Senior Portfolio Manager

B.S. (with distinction), Economics, University of Wisconsin-Madison
M.A., Economics, New York University


Based in New York, Cedric Fan is the lead portfolio manager for Russell Investments’ hedge fund team. In this role, Cedric directly manages or oversees all multi-strategy and single-strategy hedge fund portfolios. Cedric also oversees the global hedge fund research team, which is composed of analysts in New York, Seattle, and London. The research team establishes and maintains ranks on all hedge fund products that are used in portfolios. 

Prior to joining Russell Investments in 2004, Cedric worked at Bear Stearns in its risk management group. When he left Bear, he was serving as its first dedicated fixed income prime brokerage risk manager. Cedric began his career at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

SECOR Asset Management

Philip DiDio, Portfolio Coordinator & Portfolio Manager

Philip DiDio is a Portfolio Coordinator and Portfolio Manager in SECOR’s hedge fund of funds manager selection team.  Prior to SECOR, Phil was Director of Research at Summit Private Investments, a fund of hedge funds. Before that, Philip managed hedge fund research and was a portfolio manager for Oppenheimer & Co.’s proprietary fund-of-funds. Philip has additional related experience at FRM Americas, a $13 billion fund-of-funds company, where he headed a team responsible for finding, recommending and monitoring relative value managers. Philip spent the earlier part of his career as a convertible bond portfolio manager for General Motors Asset Management and a quantitative analyst with Merrill Lynch. He has authored a chapter for a hedge fund compendium published by Euromoney. Philip received a B.A. in Mathematics and Philosophy of Science from the University of Pennsylvania and an M.A. in Statistics from the University of California at Berkeley.

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Segal Marco Advisors

Frank Trotta, Associate Director, Alpha Investment Research

Mr. Trotta is an Associate Director, Alpha Investment Research, in Segal Marco Advisors’ Darien office. He has more than 10 years of experience in financial services, including five years of hedge fund research. The Alpha Investment Research Group is responsible for Fundamental/Quantitative Manager Research. Mr. Trotta is focused on identifying best in class absolute return solutions in hedge funds, hedge fund of funds, and liquid multi-asset class managers through a comprehensive due diligence process. He is also responsible for portfolio monitoring of clients’ hedge fund investments.

Prior to joining Segal Marco Advisors, Mr. Trotta was a junior investment team member for SSARIS Advisors, a hedge fund of funds for State Street Global Advisors, where he was responsible for manager sourcing, due diligence, portfolio construction and risk monitoring across all strategies. Before that, he was an associate in taxable high yield and investment grade fixed income sales in Morgan Stanley Smith Barney’s capital markets group. 


Mr. Trotta received a BS in Economics and Public Policy from Hobart and William Smith Colleges. 

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Seven Bridges Advisors

Ram Lee, Partner

Ram is one of two Partners who oversee Seven Bridges Advisors, an outsourced CIO firm with over $4 billion in assets.   Previously, he served as Managing Director at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute endowment.   In his role at HHMI, Ram invested its $17 billion endowment across all asset classes, public and private, and directly managed proprietary investment portfolios as well as served as the macro strategist for the Investment Committee.  Ram moved to HHMI with the CIO of the UPenn endowment, where he held the position of Director of Investments.  He received a B.A. from the Honors Program at Swarthmore and an M.B.A. from Yale.  Ram serves on an Investment Committee for the NFL Players Association.  

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Shinnecock Partners

Alan Snyder, Founder & Managing Partner

Alan C. Snyder is the Managing General Partner of Shinnecock Partners, a 28-year-old family office investment boutique, and its investment funds, General Partner of Shinnecock Group. Alan was the Founder and non-Executive Board Chairman of Snap Insurance LLC; the Founder, CEO, President, and Chairman of the Board of Answer Financial Inc. and the Insurance Answer Center; CEO of Aurora National Life Assurance; Executive-in-Charge of Executive Life Insurance Company on behalf of the California Department of Insurance; President and COO of First Executive Corporation, a $20 billion life holding company; and Executive Vice President and member of the Board of Directors at Dean Witter Financial Services Group (a predecessor firm to Morgan Stanley). He managed most of the product areas and as part of a three-person team undertook the development of the Discover card. He is the former Chairman, President and Board Member of the Western Los Angeles Boy Scout Council. Mr. Snyder is a graduate of Georgetown University (WSJ Scholar) and Harvard Business School (Baker Scholar).

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State of Wisconsin Investment Board

Jason Rector, CFA, Senior Analyst

Jason Rector a Senior Analyst at the State of Wisconsin Investment Board (SWIB) located in Madison, Wisconsin.  Jason’s responsibilities include manager due diligence, portfolio construction, and oversight of the absolute return and beta one external manager relationships.  Prior to joining SWIB, Jason was an Analyst on the manager due diligence team at Mesirow Advanced Strategies in Chicago, IL.  During his tenure at Mesirow, Jason spent time on the investment team as well as the operational due diligence team.  Jason has an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and a bachelor’s degree from Marquette University.  Jason is also a CFA Charterholder.

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Teachers' Retirement System of the State of Illinois

Kirk Sims, CFA, Senior Investment Officer - Emerging Managers

Kirk Sims is a Senior Investment Officer for the Teachers’ Retirement System of the State of Illinois (TRS).  TRS is the largest public pension plan in the state of Illinois, with an investment portfolio of $51 billion.  Mr. Sims has oversight and management responsibility of TRS’s Emerging Manager Program, a $750 million evergreen pool of capital designed to identify and invest in emerging investment managers across all asset classes.

Prior to joining TRS, Mr. Sims was employed by Prudential Retirement where he was responsible for a manager of manager’s retirement platform as well as an open architecture investment platform.  He also has a background in asset management and has held various positions with both large and small asset managers.

Mr. Sims is a CFA charterholder and holds a Masters in Business Administration from the Columbia University Graduate School of Business.  He received a Bachelor of Business Administration from Howard University in Washington DC.

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Texas Tech University

Dan Parker, Deputy CIO

Dan Parker is the Deputy Chief Investment Officer for Texas Tech University, and is based in Austin, Texas. In this role, he shares broad responsibility for policy, strategy, asset allocation, structure and processes across the organization and the portfolio, in addition to driving the endowment’s investments in public and private equity, diversifying and absolute return strategies, real assets and natural resources. Before relocating to Austin to join Texas Tech, Dan worked in New York as an Investment Officer with Helmsley Charitable Trust, as a Vice President in private equity with BlackRock and as an Associate in investment banking at Citigroup. He began his career serving as a US Marine, where he commanded infantry and reconnaissance units. He holds degrees from Tulane University and The College of William and Mary.

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The Harry & Jeanette Weinberg Foundation

David Gilmore, Managing Director, Investments

David Gilmore joined The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation in 2014 to help start and build their investment office. The Foundation has $2.8 billion in assets and makes over $100 million in grants each year. The portfolio is invested across all asset classes including hedge funds, private equity, venture capital and real assets. David is responsible for the design and implementation of the Foundation's strategic and tactical asset allocation, investment manager selection, risk management, and market research. 

Prior to joining the Foundation, David helped start The Ohio State University investment office in 2009 and served in several senior roles. The investment office was responsible for the investment management of the University’s $3.5 billion long-term investment pool. David was previously a partner at Gerber/Taylor Capital Advisors, Gerber/Taylor is an independent investment advisory firm. During his tenure the firm consulted on over $20 billion in assets and managed over $3 billion in discretionary fund of funds mainly focused on hedge funds and private equity investments. David earned his BBA from Baylor University and an MBA with a concentration in Finance from the University of Memphis. David holds the Certified Financial Planner™ professional (CFP®) designation and the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA) designation.

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UJA - Federation of New York

Colin G. Ambrose, CFA, Chief Investment Officer

Since 2009, Colin Ambrose has been the Chief Investment Officer for UJA-Federation of New York where he is responsible for the day-to-day management and oversight of the institution’s endowment and retirement plans.  Mr. Ambrose’s more than twenty years of investment experience include cofounding an asset management firm that advised and managed assets on behalf of institutional and high net worth clients and starting the investment office at The Juilliard School where he served as the school’s first Chief Investment Officer.  Earlier in his career, Mr. Ambrose was responsible for alternative investments at Wesleyan University after having worked on both the buy and sell side.  Mr. Ambrose serves as an Investment Committee member for the Westport Public Library in Connecticut where he resides with his wife and children.  He earned a M.B.A. from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, a B.A. from Wesleyan University and holds a CFA designation.

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University of Oklahoma Foundation

Gene Lohmeyer CFA, Director of Investments

Gene Lohmeyer is the Director of Investments at the University of Oklahoma Foundation, which oversees approximately $1.9 billion on behalf of OU. He was previously the Chief Investment Officer at Cedar Rowe Partners, an investment advisory firm, and a Managing Director at Cambridge Associates, a leading provider of investment consulting and outsourced CIO services. Prior to beginning his investment career with Merrill Lynch in 2000, he served in the United States Army where he worked with air defense missile technologies. He holds a BA in economics from Georgia Southern University and an MBA from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University. He is a CFA Charterholder.

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UPS Group Trust

Roxton McNeal, CFA, FRM, Senior Portfolio Manager

Roxton McNeal serves as the Head of Multi Asset Investment Strategy & Allocation at the UPS Pension Group. He maintains investment oversight for the strategic and tactical allocation of the approximately $42 billion in assets held for the UPS defined benefit plans. He is also responsible for the implementation of plan level derivative overlay strategies, Asset/Liability Management (ALM) and risk and performance monitoring. He is one of four Investment Committee members with the overall responsibility for the operation and administration of the UPS Pension Group Portfolios and overseeing the implementation of the investment policy.

Previous to his current position at the UPS Pension Group, Roxton was the Senior Portfolio Manager for the Long Duration Fixed Income portfolio where he had oversight of approximately $7 billion of long duration fixed income assets. He restructured the benchmarks and manager mandate guidelines to balance the asset class’ competing roles of total return and liability hedging.

Before joining the UPS Investments Group, he held various positions at General Motors Asset Management (GMAM). He was responsible for the oversight of approximately $20 billion in long duration fixed income assets, played a key role in a $25 billion pension risk transfer agreement, and designed and implemented key quantitative analytics across asset classes and pension plans under the purview of GMAM.

Prior to joining the Corporate Pension community, Roxton worked on the “buy side” for hedge funds and private companies including Commodity Trading Advisors (CTA’s) and Private Energy Companies.
He attended the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Economics. He has earned the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation, the Financial Risk Manager (FRM) designation, and holds the Certificate in Investment Performance Measurement (CIPM) and the Certificate in Quantitative Finance (CQF). 

2018 Moderators

Other Hedge Fund Industry Experts



Ryan Kalish, Co-Founder

Before co-founding Allocator, Ryan was part of the investment team at Stenham Advisors, a $3bn fund of hedge funds. During this time, he completed due diligence on macro & equity funds around the world and led investments totaling over $300m. During his tenure he also developed a range of quantitative risk analytics tools. Ryan graduated from the London School of Economics with a BSc (Hons) in Management Science specializing in Finance. 

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Backstop Solutions Group

Clint Coghill, Founder & CEO

Clint Coghill co-founded Backstop Solutions Group in 2003 as the Founding Chairman and has helped guide the company as Chairman of the Board for the last 15 years. Clint now leads the Backstop Executive Team as CEO.

Prior to joining Backstop in an executive role, Clint was CIO of Coghill Capital Management, a successful Chicago-based hedge fund management company he started in 1995. Among his other professional pursuits, Clint was the Founding Chairman of NFTE Chicago’s Regional Advisory Board, which provides entrepreneurship programs to young people from low-income communities and reaches more than 2,000 youth per year. He is also the founder of two charitable Organizations, the Coghill Family Foundation and the Environmental Impact Initiative.

Clint received his Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from the University of Arizona, and his Master’s Degree in Business Administration from the London Business School.

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Crowe LLP

Sal Shah, Partner Asset Management Services

Mr. Shah has over 25 years of experience in serving investment company clients having worked with big four and large middle market firms. He has lead and served as an advisory and assurance services practitioner for investment company clients like hedge funds, private equity funds, venture capital funds and fund of funds, foreign currency and structured products.

Mr. Shah has deep understanding of esoteric instruments like asset based debt, mortgage based securities, distressed debt instruments, private equity/debt investments, venture capital investments, etc. He has served clients ranging from startups to $18 billon aum. He has strong understanding of client reporting, compliance monitoring, management and incentive fees, investor capital transactions, portfolio valuation, performance measurement, and trade reconciliation. He also has experience with SEC examinations of auditors workpapers. He is a frequent speaker at key industry conferences and has authored industry thought leadership articles.

Professional Affiliations: American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants

Education & Certificates: Bachelor of Arts, Accounting & Finance, University of Calcutta, India, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)

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Anatole Kaletsky, Founding Partner

Anatole is co-founder and co- chairman of Gavekal. He is also a columnist for Reuters and the International Herald Tribune, and chairman of the Institute for New Economic Thinking. His recent book ‘Capitalism 4.0’ was nominated for the 2011 Samuel Johnson Prize.

Before founding Gavekal, Anatole worked as an economic journalist at the Financial Times, The Economist and the London Times.

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S. Brian Farmer, Investment Management Practice Chair

Brian Farmer is the leader of the Hirschler’s investment management and private funds practice group.  His practice focuses on the investment management industry, advising both institutional investors and investment managers.  Brian’s institutional investor clientele includes several top endowments and outsourced chief investment offices (OCIOs).  He also advises fund managers and registered investment advisors (RIAs) regarding personnel issues, executive compensation, ownership arrangements, change of control transactions, outside business activities and regulatory compliance.  Brian has formed and advised on the operations of numerous private funds in a variety of asset classes.  He believes a deep understanding of the investment management industry is essential to effectively serving its participants.  Brian is a frequent lecturer at investment industry events and has been quoted in Reuters, The Wall Street Journal Online, PE Manager, Hedge Fund Alert and Opalesque, among other publications.

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Mirae Asset Securities (USA) Inc.

Robert Akeson, Head of Equity Prime Brokerage

Robert Akeson is Head of Equity Prime Brokerage at Mirae Asset Securities (USA) Inc., an affiliate of the Mirae Family of companies, Korea’s leading non-bank financial group. 

Mirae Asset Securities (USA) Inc. provides prime brokerage, equity finance, repo, correspondent clearing, agency execution, foreign research distribution and corporate access services to institutional investors, including hedge funds. Mr. Akeson is well versed in the management, marketing, operations, enterprise technology, compliance, risk management, due diligence, balance sheet and liquidity management aspects of these businesses. 

His background includes leadership positions with Neuberger Berman, Morgan Stanley, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Financial Services and Broadridge Financial Solutions (formerly ADP BISG). 
Mr. Akeson is a frequent speaker on topics related to the hedge fund industry, prime brokerage, market liquidity and Basel III. He is a member of the Management Committee of the New York Alternative Investment Roundtable, the DTCC Systemic Risk Roundtable, CFA Society New York and the Economic Club of New York. Mr. Akeson has also taught Money, Banking and Financial Markets at Molloy College. 

Mr. Akeson holds an MBA from New York University and a BA from Washington College.

Sadis & Goldberg

Ron S. Geffner, Partner

Ron S. Geffner is a member of the firm’s Executive Committee and also oversees the Financial Services Group. He regularly structures, organizes and counsels private investment vehicles, investment advisory organizations, broker-dealers, commodity pool operators and other investment fiduciaries. Mr. Geffner also routinely counsels clients in connection with regulatory investigations and actions. His broad background with federal and state securities laws and the rules, regulations and customary practices of the SEC, Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Commodities Futures Trading Commission and various other regulatory bodies enables him to provide strategic guidance to a diverse clientele. He provides legal services to hundreds of hedge funds, private equity funds and venture capital funds organized in the United States and offshore.

Mr. Geffner began his legal career with the SEC, where he investigated and prosecuted violations of the federal securities laws with an emphasis on enforcement in connection with violations of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 and the Investment Company Act of 1940. He also assisted federal and state criminal agencies, such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Attorney General’s Office, in their investigations of possible criminal violations of federal and state securities laws.
Prior to joining Sadis & Goldberg, Mr. Geffner was associated with two other New York City-based law firms, where he represented domestic and offshore private investment vehicles, as well as broker-dealers, registered investment advisers and registered investment companies.

He began his corporate legal career as in-house counsel to the Investment Management Industry Services Group of PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP. He provided legal advice regarding investment advisers, registered investment companies and broker-dealers.

Mr. Geffner is often interviewed as a legal expert in the securities industry. He has been interviewed on Fox News, CBS Morning Show, CBS Evening News with Dan Rather, Squawk Box, Power Lunch and Closing Bell on CNBC, British Broadcasting Channel and Bloomberg Radio. He is regularly quoted in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg News, Barron’s, Barron’s Online, Reuters, Dow Jones, Financial Times, New York Newsday, London Daily News,, Private Equity Week and other national and international publications.

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