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Alumni Connections - No. 35 - June 2007

Alumni Connections is a sampling of alumni news. Alumni on the Move, Alumni to Know, CEO Watch: Taking the Lead, and CEO Watch: Making Headlines share news gleaned from media online and in print, including news submitted to Chicago Booth Magazine. Submit information about yourself or fellow alumni to editor@chicagobooth.edu.

Alumni on the Move

American Century Investments:
Mark On, ’90,
has joined as senior vice president and chief investment officer of international equity. Based in Kansas City, Missouri, the investment managing firm also has offices in New York and San Francisco and manages about $105 billion in assets.

Anaptys Biosciences, Inc.:
Tom Smart, ’90,
has been named chairman and CEO. The biopharmaceutical company is headquartered in La Jolla, California.

Arc Innovations:
Helen Bremner, ’92,
has been named CEO. Based in Wellington, New Zealand, the firm makes automated meters, which transmit energy readings directly from the consumer to the energy provider.

Buckeye Technologies Inc.:
Kristopher Matula, ’91,
has been elected to the board of directors. He is president and chief operating officer of the Memphis, Tennessee–based company, which makes specialty fibers and nonwoven materials in plants in the United States, Germany, Canada, and Brazil.

CCS-Adplus LLC:
Glenn Gottfried, ’84,
has been named CEO. Gottfried will establish a sales, marketing, and business development office in north suburban Illinois and other cities. Doing business as Infolure, the Phoenix-based company provides direct marketing and accounts receivable services.

Cellnet Technology, Inc.:
David Slump, ’96,
has joined as CEO. The Atlanta-based firm offers metering services and automation to energy and water businesses.

Coleman Cable Inc.:
Denis Springer, ’69,
has joined the board of directors and will chair the audit committee. The cable manufacturer is based in Waukegan, Illinois. Springer was senior vice president and CFO of Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corporation.

ConsumerBase LLC:
Tom McCabe, ’92,
has joined as CFO. Based in Evanston, Illinois, the firm is an e-marketing agency with clients in North America and the United Kingdom.

Disaboom, Inc.:
John Walpuck, ’87,
has been appointed chief operating officer and CFO. The Denver-based firm is developing the first interactive online community for Americans with disabilities.

EDGAR Online, Inc.:
John Mutch, ’97 (EXP-2),
has been nominated for election to the board. Based in Norwalk, Connecticut, the firm provides financial information on global companies. Mutch is a managing partner and founder of MV Advisors, LLC, an investment and advisory firm. 

 FNB Corp.:
Joseph Beury, ’79,
has been named director of wealth management. Beury has managed the bank holding company’s trust and asset management securities divisions. The firm is based in Christiansburg, Virginia.

Harris & Harris Group, Inc.:
Michael Janse, ’02,
has joined as a managing director and executive vice president. The New York–based firm is a publicly traded venture capital company investing in micro- and nanotechnology. Janse works in its Palo Alto, California, office.

iLight Technologies:
Sean Callahan, ’91,
has been named president and CEO. Tim Newbold, ’91, has been appointed CFO and vice president, finance. Based in Chicago, the LED (light-emitting diode) lighting company recently was listed as 84th in Inc.
magazine’s list of the 500 fastest growing private companies.

Interline Brands, Inc.:
Kenneth Sweder, ’00,
has joined as chief merchandising officer. The national distributor and direct marketer is headquartered in Jacksonville, Florida.

International Olympic Committee:
Patrick Baumann, ’01 (EXP-6),
has been named as a candidate for membership in the 119th IOC Session. A vote on membership will take place July 4 to July 7 in Guatemala City, Guatemala. Baumann, secretary general of FIBA, an international basketball federation, already belongs to the IOC’s Coordination Commission for the London 2012 Olympic Games. The IOC is based in Geneva.

Leucadia Capital Partners LLC:
Thomas Keck, ’97,
has cofounded the firm and is chief investment officer. Based in La Jolla, California, it offers private equity investment management and advisory services.

MB Real Estate:
Laura Quayle, ’91,
has joined as vice president of the corporate services division. The corporate real estate firm is headquartered in Chicago with an East Coast regional headquarters in New York.

MEGA Brands Inc.:
Andrée Pinard, ’94,
has been appointed director, treasury and investor relations. She also will be the firm’s lead contact with the financial community. The Montreal-based firm makes construction toys, games, puzzles, stationery, and arts and crafts.

Metabolix Inc.:
Jay Kouba, ’91 (XP-60),
chairman of the board, has been promoted to president and CEO. Based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the biotechnology firm makes biodegradable, natural plastics.

Morgan Joseph & Co. Inc.:
S. Randy Lampert, ’77,
has been appointed head of business development and a managing director in corporate finance of the New York–based investment bank. Lampert will continue to advise corporations through the firm’s Activist Defense Group, which advises companies that are or may become targeted by activists.

National Defense University:
Robert Book, MBA ’02, PhD ’02,
has been appointed assistant professor of economics at its Industrial College of the Armed Forces in Washington DC. Also, at George Mason University, Book is adjunct professor of economics and adjunct researcher at the Center for Air Transportation Systems Research, Volgenau School of Information Technology and Engineering. Book recently testified before the U.S. House of Representatives’ Armed Services Subcommittee on Seapower and Expeditionary Forces about inefficiencies in naval shipbuilding contracts.

Nicor Inc.:
Norman Bobins, ’67,
has been elected to the board of directors of the company’s main subsidiary, Nicor Gas, one of the nation’s largest natural gas distribution companies. Nicor is headquartered in Naperville, Illinois. Bobins is president of ABN AMRO North America, which owns LaSalle Bank; president and CEO of LaSalle Bank Corporation; and senior executive vice president of ABN AMRO’s Dutch parent, ABN AMRO Bank N.V.

Northern Trust Corporation:
Joyce St. Clair, ’91 (XP-60),
executive vice president, has been appointed head of corporate risk management and will serve on the management committee. Northern Trust is a multibank holding company based in Chicago.

Patient Marketing Group:
Tom McMillian, ’87,
has been named vice president, group account director. Based in Princeton, New Jersey, the firm provides pharmaceutical marketing services.

Peabody Energy:
William Rusnak, ’70,
has been re-elected to the board of directors. The St. Louis–based firm is the world’s largest private-sector coal company. Rusnak is former president and CEO of Premcor Inc.

Pipeline Trading Systems LLC:
Susan Hines, ’02,
has joined as director of sales. Based in New York with a new office in Chicago, the broker/dealer firm runs Pipeline, a system for electronic block trading.

The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.:
Donald Shepard, ’87 (XP-42),
has been elected to the board of directors and the board of its principal banking subsidiary, PNC Bank, National Association. The retail and business banking firm is based in Pittsburgh. Shepard is chairman and CEO of AEGON, N.V., a life insurance and pension company.

RF Monolithics, Inc.:
Joseph Andrulis, ’90,
has been appointed senior vice president and manager of the wireless solutions group. He previously was vice president of marketing. The wireless technology firm is based in Dallas.

San Francisco Chamber of Commerce:
Jim Woolwine, ’72,
has been elected chairman of the board. Woolwine is chairman of Presidio Bank and an advisor to Belvedere Capital Partners, a private equity firm.

Sunstone Hotel Investors, Inc.:
Habib Enayetullah, ’95,
has joined as senior vice president of development. Based in San Clemente, California, the company is a real estate investment trust with interests in 52 hotel chains including Marriott, Hyatt, Hilton, and Fairmont.

Third Avenue Management LLC:
Yang Lie, ’95,
has been promoted to director of research. Lie is a principal of the firm and senior portfolio manager for its private and institutional advisory business. The New York–based firm advises on investments and manages about $28 billion in assets.

Tirschwell & Loewy, Inc.:
William Butler, ’89,
has joined as senior portfolio manager. Based in New York, the investment advisory and management firm provides customized fixed-income and equity portfolio management services.

UBS Global Asset Management:
Vikram Kaura, ’99,
has joined as a director in the small-cap investment team, where he focuses on the technology sector. The firm is based in Chicago.


Alumni to Know

Craig Bouchard, ’81, president of Esmark Inc., is growing his steel processing and distributing company through acquisitions. The latest of ten acquisitions is Wheeling-Pittsburgh Corp., a deal expected to be completed in July, said an April 22 article in the Chicago Tribune about Bouchard’s career path. “In four years, we will have gone from start-up to entering the Fortune 500 [by the end of the year],” Bouchard said in the article. A former college baseball player and bank executive, Bouchard started Esmark with his brother. He described a way to be successful: “There are two types of managers: aggressive people and pleasant people. Aggressive people don’t succeed. Pleasant people get run over. To be a star, you’ve got to be pleasantly aggressive all the time.”


Christopher Fossick, ’03 (AXP-2), Jones Lang LaSalle managing director, Southeast Asia, and country head of Singapore, discusses a boom in Singapore’s luxury residential market in an April 4 article in Property Report. Economic growth, which began in the second half of 2005, was driven by expansion of the banking and financial services sectors, Fossick said. Because jobs were being created, “there was suddenly a great demand for high-quality residences,” he said. “Singapore benefited by having a good infrastructure and being reasonably priced compared to a lot of other big Asian cities. These factors were important as financial services restructured and started setting up hubs in Asia, moving away from centralized operations in expensive locations like New York and London. So this was all coming into Singapore before it was generally realized and filtered into an improved economic performance.”


Robert Lane, ’74, CEO and chairman of Deere & Co., has reaped the rewards of a new strategy at the farm and construction equipment maker, which is based in Moline, Illinois. While previously the company used to keep its assembly plants running regularly despite low sales, under Lane the company measures capital cost versus pretax operating income to determine production pace and other operations. “If you just take a look at earning, it doesn’t mean anything,” Lane said in an April 16 article in Crain’s Chicago Business. “It’s earnings relative to what was invested.” Lane made Deere plants run more efficiently, the article said. Deere sales have increased 75 percent since Lane took over in 2000.


Alisa Miller, MBA ’99, MPP ’99, president and CEO of Public Radio International, talks about competing in the media market in a March article in Fast Company. “Our competition includes not just public radio, but generally media, Web sites, everything focused on news and entertainment,” Miller said in the article. “So we have to ask two questions. First, how do our programs serve our mission, helping people understand that they live in an interdependent world? And second, how can we manifest that in a way that’s unique? To do that, I have to be 12 to 18 months ahead of everyone else.” She credits PRI’s success to forming partnerships with the BBC and partner stations, and also to sheer invention. “We joke, ‘If it sounds weird, we’re all over it.’”


Russell Read, AB ’84, MBA ’87, chief investment officer at California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS), is bringing his expertise to the University of California, Davis, as part of the Robert A. Fox Executive-in-Residence Program. “With responsibility for CalPERS $240 billion investment portfolio, this year’s executive-in-residence is one of the nation’s most influential money managers,” said an April 20 article by UC Davis News Service. The article reported that Read taught a course on portfolio construction and risk management. “Teaching is something I find really connects me with the critical research,” Read said. “It forces you to think in terms of comprehensiveness and within an analytical framework for issues. The students themselves keep you sharp and ask more difficult questions than naturally arise during the day-to-day workday.”


Retired investment banker Rex Sinquefield, ’72, has donated to state political campaigns and helped to establish a free-market think tank, the Show-Me Institute, since moving back to the St. Louis area two years ago. “My whole motivation is to try to make Missouri a better place,” Sinquefield said in an April 15 article in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “I have no secret issues. I have no secret agenda.” He said he plans to spend half of each week within the city to pursue his interests: philanthropy, sports, and politics. In the article Sinquefield acknowledged his willingness to donate millions to the campaigns of politicians who advance the agenda he espouses. An April 15 article by the Associated Press said, “He believes state income taxes, as well as earnings taxes in St. Louis and Kansas City, hurt job growth and economic prosperity. He proposes replacing St. Louis’s earnings tax with a land tax that would be separate from a property tax. He also opposes Missouri’s minimum wage and seeks constitutional restrictions on state spending.”


Jonathan Turk, ’91, chairman and CEO of Avenue Edit, Inc., bought the post production company in August 2006. The purchase of all the company stock made Avenue Edit “the only minority-owned, full-service post production company in the United States,” he said. Headquartered in Chicago, “the majority of our activity lies in working with major advertising agencies to provide all of the services necessary to produce finished television commercials after all of the film is shot,” Turk writes. “Essentially, we edit the film and provide all the audio, video, and graphics elements involved in making commercials ready for distribution.” He added: “Given our unique position in the marketplace, along with the historic lack of attention to diversity displayed by the advertising industry and the desire of major advertisers to use diverse first- and second-tier vendors, we hope to experience substantial growth in the coming years.” The firm also has an office in Santa Monica, California.


Submit information about yourself or fellow alumni to editor@chicagobooth.edu.