Alumni Connections

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headshot of bernard botThe London-headquartered home improvement group Kingfisher has appointed Bernard Bot, ’92, as CFO. Previously, Bot served as CFO at Travelport Worldwide, a global technology company based in Langley, England.

headshot of Meryl GoldenMeryl Golden, ’86, has been named COO of Kingstone Companies, Inc., a northeast regional property and casualty insurance holding company with headquarters in Kingston, New York. She will hold the same position at its principal operating subsidiary, Kingstone Insurance Company. Most recently, Golden served as head of business development for Arity’s Insurance Solutions business.  

No ImageCraig Tompkins, ’87, has been named president and CEO of Wood Fiber Holdings Inc., a provider of cutting tools, consumable supplies, and tool maintenance equipment headquartered in Springfield, Oregon. Previously, Tompkins served as COO.

Glenn AllisonGlenn Allison, ’11 (XP-80), has been named vice chairman of the National Retail Federation’s technology leadership council. The National Retail Federation is a nonprofit retail trade association based in Washington, DC. Allison is vice president of enterprise architecture, governance, and innovation labs at Tractor Supply Company, a national operator of retail farm stores headquartered in Brentwood, Tennessee.

headshot of Sarah LenersSarah Leners, ’16, has been appointed to the auxiliary board of the John G. Shedd Aquarium in Chicago. Leners is an investment banking associate at Lazard, a global financial advisory and asset management firm headquartered in New York.

No ImageKenneth Sweder, ’00, has been appointed chairman of the board of Individual FoodService, a distributor of food service disposables and janitorial and sanitation products based in Bell, California. Sweder currently serves as CEO of SouthernCarlson, a fastening and packaging distributor based in Omaha, Nebraska.

No ImageThe Aluminum Association has appointed Jason Walsh, ’07, to its board of directors. Based in Arlington, Virginia, the Aluminum Association represents aluminum production and jobs in the United States. Walsh is senior vice president, flat rolled products, at Kaiser Aluminum, a producer of semi-fabricated aluminum products based in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

No ImageKenneth Charhut, ’88, executive chairman of Foldax, announced the company’s first in-human use of the Tria heart valve under its FDA Early Feasibility Study (EFS) for the treatment of aortic valve disease. The Tria heart valve has the potential to address durability and thrombogenicity issues of currently available heart valves. “The start of our EFS study in the US represents a major milestone for Foldax and heart valve patients worldwide since Tria valves represent true next generation technology,” Charhut said in a press release. “We are bringing 21st Century solutions to the worldwide problem of providing high quality products at an affordable price.” Headquartered in Salt Lake City, Foldax is a developer of long-lasting replacement heart valves.

No ImageDeanie Elsner, ’92, CEO of Charlotte’s Web, announced that The Vitamin Shoppe, an omni-channel specialty retailer of nutritional products based in Secaucus, New Jersey, will sell her company’s new line of CBD hemp extract-infused gummies. The gummies, which are intended to help with stress, sleep, and exercise recovery, will appear in 738 Vitamin Shoppe stores across 45 US states. In a press release, Elsner said, “Working with a trusted retail partner that is dedicated to helping its customers become their best self allows us to effectively expand our national footprint giving more Americans retail access to our leading CBD hemp extract wellness products.” Charlotte’s Web is a Boulder-based hemp company.

headshot of Scott HamulaScott Hamula, ’86, won the 2019 Distinguished Advertising Educator Award from the American Advertising Federation, a nonprofit based in Washington, DC. The annual award recognizes the best advertising professors in the country. Hamula is an associate professor and chair of the department of strategic communication at Ithaca College’s Roy H. Park School of Communications in New York.

headshot of Sam HillSam Hill, ’84, a senior writer at Newsweek Magazine, published an in-depth essay on how we can address problems around immigration and developing nations, and what businesses can do to help. The article is called, “Trump’s Message to Troubled Developing Countries? Figure it Out On Your Own. Here’s Why That’s Not a Smart Move.”

No ImageJCB International president and COO Kimihisa Imada, ’86, has partnered with LankaClear to launch the National Card Scheme program in Sri Lanka, which lowers transaction costs for banks and merchants. The program’s debit and credit cards can be used at domestic and global ATMs and POS terminals. LankaClear operates Sri Lanka’s national payment network LankaPay and is based in Colombo, Sri Lanka. JCB is an international credit card brand based in Asia.

headshot of dan IvascynThe New York Times featured expert insights on the bond market from Daniel Ivascyn, ’98, in the article “After a Wild and Profitable Ride, Bonds Can Still Provide Safety.” In the article, Ivascyn says, “You have a very dangerous bond market from a risk perspective. Although yields could go lower, they could also go a lot higher.” Ivascyn is the group chief investment officer at PIMCO, a fixed income investment manager based in Newport Beach, California.

No ImageThe Maryland State Retirement and Pension System (SRPS) has hired Ratna Kota, ’03, as a senior portfolio manager in public equity. Based in Baltimore, SRPS administers death, disability, and retirement benefits. As an asset manager, Kota has worked with a number of financial services firms, including San Francisco–headquartered Wells Fargo Securities.

No ImageMartin Nesbitt, ’89, cofounder and co-CEO of the Chicago-based private equity firm Vistria Group, appeared in a Crain’s Chicago Business article featuring his firm. The article highlights the firm’s progressive practice of focusing on private-sector investments that contribute to the public good.

headshot of triet NguyenDPC DATA Inc., a provider of data solutions for the US municipal bond market based in Roseland, New Jersey, has hired Triet Nguyen, AB ’77, MBA ’79, as vice president of strategic data operations. Nguyen joins the company from Axios Advisors LLC, an independent credit advisory firm he founded that’s based in Lake Forest, Illinois.

headshot of ashu palThe Maryland State Retirement and Pension System (SRPS) has hired Ashu Pal, ‘04, as a senior portfolio manager in fixed income, currencies, and commodities. Based in Baltimore, SRPS administers death, disability, and retirement benefits. Previously, Pal worked as a markets specialist in risk and investment SME for several financial services companies, including New York–based Citigroup.

headshot of duncan rolphThe New York–based investing publication Barron’s has named Duncan Rolph, ’02, to its list of Top 100 Independent Wealth Advisors. Rolph is managing partner of Miracle Mile Advisors, an independent advisory firm based in Los Angeles. “I am incredibly excited and humbled to be in the company of such a talented group of advisors,” Rolph said in a press release. “Since our firm’s founding, we have consistently strived to innovate. We feel passionately about providing sophisticated financial advice backed by a team of amazing professionals.”

headshot of emmanuel romanThe Financial Times ran a profile on Emmanuel Roman, ’87, CEO of the global investment management firm PIMCO in Newport Beach, California. In the article, Roman discusses how he got his start at PIMCO, overseeing the company’s rejuvenation, and its dedication to its bonds. “We’re not trying to be all things to all people,” he’s quoted in the article. “We have a very defined strategy.”  

headshot of Jeff KlingelhoferThornburg Investment Management, a global investment firm headquartered in Santa Fe, New Mexico, has appointed Jeffrey Klingelhofer, ’10, co-head of investment, a newly-created position. Klingelhofer joined the firm in 2010, most recently serving as portfolio manager and managing director.

headshot of jeb oryPhone2Action cofounder and CEO Jeb Ory, ’11, is joining the Blackbaud Partner Network to offer high-impact advocacy tools to customers. Phone2Action is a digital platform that powers high-impact grassroots advocacy based in Arlington, Virginia. Blackbaud is a cloud software company powering social good based in Charleston, South Carolina. In a press release, Ory said, “Together, Phone2Action and Blackbaud will provide tens of thousands of organizations with modern tools to better engage their stakeholders in fundraising and advocacy. The result is more effective campaigns—and real societal change.”