Avery Shenfeld is Managing Director and Chief Economist at CIBC, having been with the firm since 1993. He holds a Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University. One of the country’s most sought after commentators, he is consistently ranked as one of the top economists in a survey of Canadian institutional equity investors. Avery follows economic developments and their implications for financial and asset markets. He has received multiple awards for forecast accuracy in Canada, and is a seven time winner of the Dow Jones Market Watch award for most accurate forecaster of the US economy. His prior background includes experience in management consulting, on the economics faculty at the University of Toronto, and lecturing in the summer program at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government. He has addressed numerous business groups and been quoted in the media in the United States, Canada, Asia and Europe.
Peter heads our Strategic Exchange initiative at Connor, Clark & Lunn. He has over 20 years of investment experience in Canada, the US and the United Kingdom spending his earlier years in consulting, which included leading two of the major Canadian firms and then moving to the investment management business in 2008 when he established a new investment operation for a Canadian insurance company. He joined Connor, Clark and Lunn Financial Group, as Senior Vice President, Institutional Strategy in 2011.
Michel Charron, investment consultant at PBI Actuarial Consultants Ltd., has over 25 years of work experience. Michel joined the PBI investment consulting team in 2012, following the merger between ACBA and PBI. Michel is involved in all aspects related to investment consulting at PBI, particularly in analyzing and measuring managers’ performance, in compliance monitoring, in the development and revision of investment policies, in asset allocation, in manager searches, in the development and implementation of management structures and in the application of the principles for responsible investing. He is also responsible for using and maintaining the PBI asset class universes through the eVestment database.
Michel has a Bachelor degree in Finance from McGill University and is a Chartered Financial Analyst charter holder (CFA). He also holds a Diploma from the Canadian Securities Course (CSC) and from the Canadian Investment Funds (CIF). He has been a member of the Montreal CFA Society Committee since 2017.
Darren Spencer is a client portfolio manager, alternative investments for Russell Investments. Based in San Diego, Darren is responsible for working with Russell Investments’ asset management clients in North America to develop and implement alternative investment solutions.
Darren joined Russell Investments in January 2011, and until January 2014, was responsible for directing the development and implementation of alternative investment strategies for Russell Investments’ consulting clients in North America.
Prior to joining Russell Investments, Darren worked as a director for Dorchester Capital Advisors since September 2008.
From March 2003 through September 2008, Darren was global head of alternative investments at Aon Investment Consulting in Chicago. In that role he was responsible for the development of Aon’s alternative investment research and consulting platform.
He was the primary architect of Aon’s alternative investment research process and primary consultant on alternative investing for Aon’s North American consulting clients.
Prior to relocating to Chicago, Darren was based in Sydney, Australia where he was a co-founder of Aon’s investment consulting practice in Australia.
Joan has 20+ years of combined experience in accounting, consumer products, and technology. As director of industry marketing for Sage Intacct Corporation, Joan focuses on understanding the needs of nonprofit organizations by creating solutions, support, and best practices that help ensure they achieve their mission.
Prior to Sage Intacct, Joan worked as a product marketing manager at Sage Software where she spearheaded product positioning, messaging and launches, and served as the market intelligence expert. She has supported and worked with nonprofits, serving as director of marketing at David C. Cook Publishing, and worked in finance and operations for a leading manufacturing and distribution organization.
Joan holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Baylor University – Hankamer School of Business. She regularly speaks at nonprofit conferences and events, and contributes articles and white papers on nonprofit best practices.
Christy DeCosimo is an integral member of Cidel Asset Management’s client relationship team. Before joining the firm in 2011, she gained broad investment industry experience at a large Canadian bank both in the capital markets and private client service divisions.
In addition to caring for the wealth of high net worth families, she leads the firm’s Not-For-Profit initiatives – the result of a passion for and success in working within this space. She is a graduate of the Governance Essentials for Directors of Not-For-Profit Organizations Program and is currently pursuing a Professional Certificate in Not-For-Profit Management through Western Continuing Studies.
She holds the Chartered Financial Analyst designation and earned an HBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business at Western University. Christy was a member of the Board of Directors of CFA Society Toronto from 2011-2014; chairing the Audit Committee in the final year of her term.
Currently, she is a member of the BBA Professional Advisory Council of the Pilon School of Business at Sheridan in addition to the CFA Institute’s Education Advisory Board Working Body.
Robert Morgan is the Managing Director of 50 South Capital Advisors, the wholly-owned subsidiary of Northern Trust focused on alternatives investments. He has management responsibility for the firm and is Chair of the Investment Committee. He had previously been Director of Private Equity at Northern Trust, a position he held since co-founding the Private Equity funds group in 2000, and an area in which he remains heavily involved. Prior to joining Northern Trust, he worked as a Director at Frye-Louis Capital Advisors, LLC (“FLCA”), a Chicago-based private equity investment manager, and was responsible for all of the operations of FLCA, including the management of a private equity fund-of-funds. Prior to joining FLCA, Bob worked for Heller Financial, Inc., a middle-market commercial finance company which was later acquired by General Electric. Bob was a Senior Vice President at Heller and was responsible for its private equity programs. Within Heller, Bob held several roles, including positions in the Corporate Finance Group, Corporate Credit and Heller Equity Capital Corporation, Heller’s captive private equity fund. While at Heller, Bob also oversaw a direct equity co-investment program. Prior to attending business school, Bob worked for a commercial bank in North Carolina. He has invested in hundreds of private equity funds covering the buyout, venture capital, credit, distressed debt, real estate and international markets. Bob sits on the board of the Illinois Venture Capital Association and several fund advisory boards. He received his BA in Economics from Wake Forest University and an MBA from Emory University.
Jennifer Johnstone is President & CEO of Central City Foundation, an organization that has been working to improve lives in Vancouver’s inner-city since 1907. Today, Central City Foundation is a $50 million foundation with 40% of its capital invested in its mission. CCF owns innovative, sustainable social purpose real estate properties that provide low-income housing, integrated family services and early childhood development, youth services, social enterprises and healthcare including BC’s only long-term treatment centre for youth challenged by addiction. Jennifer’s background is in non-profit management and community resource development. Over the past 30 years, she has held key leadership positions with organizations including Vancity Community Foundation, Battered Women’s Support Services, Vancouver Status of Women, and Ballet British Columbia. Jennifer is a founding member of the Social Purpose Real Estate Collaborative, sits on the national Board of the Association Fundraising Professionals and serves as a volunteer Board member for several local organizations.
Ramesh Kashyap is a Managing Director at Ninepoint. He has oversight of Ninepoint’s alternative investment strategies, including private debt. Ramesh is also responsible for finding and developing differentiated strategies to grow Ninepoint’s alternative income platform.
Prior to joining Ninepoint, Ramesh was Head of Acquisitions for PRA Group Canada; a global leader in acquiring non-performing debt from financial institutions. Ramesh started his career in equipment finance at GE Capital, before moving on to corporate lending. Over a span of 15 years, Ramesh progressed through building, growing and managing credit platforms at GE, CIT Group and Wachovia (Wells Fargo). Having originated over $7B in transactions, his industry experience is broad and across asset classes throughout United States and Canada.
Mark Braun is responsible for Investments and business development at CanFirst. Prior to joining CanFirst, Mr. Braun was a portfolio analyst in the specialty funds group at Bentall. Mr. Braun received a Master of Business Administration from the University of Toronto where he was elected a governor of the university, and received a Bachelor of Engineering Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Western Ontario
Andrew Bolton is responsible for serving and developing a Canadian and international institutional clientele. He has almost 25 years of experience in the investment industry, most recently 10 years in a similar role at Letko Brosseau & Associates. Andrew’s prior experience includes five years in the hedge fund industry in Montreal and almost 10 years in Santiago, Chile, and London, England, as an equity research analyst with large international investment firms. Andrew has an MBA from the London Business School (2001), an Honours Bachelor of Arts from Queen’s University (1994) and the CFA designation (2003).