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Alumni Connections - No. 66 - January 2010

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

Arise Technologies Corporation
Douglas McCollam, ’94 (XP-63),
has been promoted to CFO from senior financial executive. Based in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, the solar technology firm makes and installs photovoltaic cells.

Belden Inc.
Gray Benoist, ’78,
has been appointed chief accounting officer. He will continue to serve as senior vice president, finance, and CFO. Headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri, the company makes specialty wire, cable, and cord products for the electronics and electrical markets.

BMO Capital Markets
Andrew Busch, ’88,
has been appointed public policy strategist. Based in Chicago, the firm is the investment and corporate banking arm of BMO Financial Group.

Boys and Girls Club of Boston
Herbert Wagner III, ’95,
has been appointed to the board of directors of the nonprofit organization. Wagner is managing director of The Baupost Group.

Broadpoint Capital, Inc.
Fred Engel, ’95,
has joined as managing director and cohead of collateralized loan obligation sales and trading in the firm’s Broadpoint DESCAP division. Based in New York, the firm is the broker-dealer subsidiary of Broadpoint Gleacher Securities Group, Inc.

Cummins Western Canada
Mike Angus, ’09 (XP-78),
has been appointed distributor principal. Headquartered in Surrey,
British Columbia, Canada, the company makes diesel engines.

Cuyahoga Arts and Culture
Karen Gahl-Mills, ’03,
has been appointed executive director. Based in Cleveland, the organization provides public funding through grants to arts and cultural organizations in Cuyahoga County, Ohio.

Enigma Diagnostics Limited
Greg Hamilton, ’01,
has been appointed chief operating officer and CFO, USA. Based in Salisbury, Wiltshire, United Kingdom, the company develops diagnostics that detect and identify infectious organisms in environmental, clinical, and biological samples.

Intertape Polymer Group
Bernard Pitz, ’98 (XP-65),
has been named CFO. With offices in Bradenton, Florida, and Montreal, Quebec, Canada, the packaging firm makes industrial and engineered coated products.

Knight Capital Group, Inc.
Daniel Braun, ’99,
has been appointed managing director, head of carbon trading. Based in Jersey City, New Jersey, the trading firm’s customers include brokerages, institutional investors, and issuers of securities.

Life Technologies Corporation
Mavis Tan, ’04 (EXP-9),
has joined the firm as head of the financial planning and analysis group, Asia Pacific. The biotech company is headquartered in Carlsbad, California.

Northern Trust Corp.
Joanne Stringer, ’02,
has been named head of personal financial services. The investment bank is based in Chicago.
 
Open Kernel Labs
Atish Gude, ’92,
has been appointed to the board of directors. The Chicago-based company makes software for mobile phones and broadband Internet devices. Gude most recently served as senior vice president and chief marketing officer for Clearwire Corporation.

Salk Institute for Biological Studies
Fred Dotzler, ’72,
has been elected to the board of directors. The research institute is based in La Jolla, California. Dotzler is cofounder and managing director of De Novo Ventures.

7-Eleven, Inc.
Rita Bargerhuff, ’87,
has been named chief marketing officer. She remains marketing vice president. The convenience store retail chain is headquartered in Dallas.

Speedus Corp.
Stephen Graham, ’88 (XP-57),
has been appointed to the board of directors. Based in Freehold, New Jersey, the firm operates through its two majority subsidiaries, Zargis Medical Corp. and Density Dynamics, Inc. The latter offers solid-state storage and data transfer acceleration technology; the former develops advanced telemedicine and diagnostic support products for health care professionals. Graham is managing director of Crosshill Financial Group, Inc.

Terex Corporation
Jacob Thomas, ’97,
has been appointed senior vice president. Based in Westport, Connecticut, the firm makes equipment for utilities and such industries as construction, infrastructure, quarrying, surface mining, shipping, transportation, and refining.

TimeSight Systems
Mike Gluck, ’73,
has joined as vice president of sales. Headquartered in Mount Laurel, New Jersey, the company makes video surveillance equipment.

Walt Disney Co.
James Rasulo, AM ’82, MBA ’84,
has been named executive vice president and CFO. The 23-year Disney veteran had been chairman of Disney Parks and Resorts. The entertainment giant is headquartered in Burbank, California.

Wells Fargo Insurance Services
Todd Wartchow, ’03,
has been named senior finance officer of the insurance company, which is headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina.


Alumni to Know

Jean Delayen, ’94 (XP-63), has been named the first director of the Center for Accelerator Science. Delayen is a principal scientist for the accelerator division of Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility and professor of accelerator physics at Old Dominion University.
The center, based in Norfolk, Virginia, will focus on the linear accelerator format and superconducting radiofrequency particle acceleration technology. Very few universities in the United States have accelerator science programs, said a November 10 article by Targeted News Service. The center was created by Old Dominion University and the Jefferson Lab.


A study that analyzed more than 125,000 NFL football plays is scoring with the media. Coauthored by Kenneth Kovash, ’06, and Steven Levitt, William B. Ogden Distinguished Service Professor of Economics and director of the Becker Center on Chicago Price Theory, the study showed that coaches alternate between running and passing plays about 10 percent more often than they should, said an October 12 article in the Wall Street Journal. To be effective, plays should be more random than the long-range predictable pattern of run, pass, run, pass. The problem is that coaches “try to outsmart each other,” Kovash told the Journal.

The study also examined Major League Baseball pitches. Fastballs made up 65 percent of the sample, but batters hit them better on average relative to other types of pitches, said an October 8 article in The Economist. “That implies pitchers sent down too many,” the article said.


Jack Markell, ’85, Delaware governor, has been named chair of the Democratic Governors Association. “We have governors and candidates across the country who are seizing the opportunity to rebuild our nation’s economy, to stand and fight for hardworking taxpayers, to strengthen our nation’s schools and give our children every opportunity to do better and go further than we—their parents—could or have gone,” Markell said in a December 3 PR Newswire article. “The members of the DGA understand that helping working families recover from this national recession requires a shared commitment.”


The financial crisis showed that free markets can lead to rule-stretching that harms various market constituents, and “if we’re going to rely on the market to settle things, we have to be willing to deal with the consequences,” Howard Marks, ’69, chairman of Oaktree Capital Management, said in his latest “chairman’s letter,” according to a November 16 article in the New York Times. Marks told the Times those consequences would have meant letting Bear Stearns, Merrill Lynch, Citigroup, A.I.G., Fannie Mae, Freddy Mac, and others fall into bankruptcy and chided former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan for his belief that asset bubbles can be discovered only in hindsight, a view that Marks said “can easily be seen as having abetted their growth.”


Russia, the world’s biggest energy producer, is recovering from the financial crisis, said a November 23 article in Bloomberg. The Russian holding company Basic Element is seeing that many of its companies “have already recovered from the crisis and are
marginally profitable,” said Timur Supataev, ’09 (EXP-14), the firm’s head of investment. “We are not interested in selling shares in our businesses, let alone giving up control at crisis-level prices,” he said. The company is negotiating with investors from Russia, China, Singapore, the Untied Arab Emirates, and Western Europe over assets in construction, airport, and financial service businesses, Supataev told Bloomberg. “Some economic sectors attract investors because they have reached the bottom and one doesn’t have to be a financial guru to expect a steep recovery,” Supataev said. “With partners we intend to take advantage of the economic situation and get leading market positions by taking over distressed assets.”


Chicago Mayor Richard Daley has reappointed his nephew and former campaign finance chief, Peter Thompson, ’00, to the Illinois Sports Facility Authority. The authority is planning for retail development near U.S. Cellular Field, home of the Chicago White Sox, a Major League Baseball team. In reporting on the reappointment, the Chicago Sun-Times quoted Thompson from 2007 when he first joined the board: “Finance and investments are what I do for a living. That’s my sweet spot.” Thompson works for Chicago Asset Management Company LLC. “I have very strong business judgment, kind of an analytical ability and a great love for Chicago and for the White Sox,” the newspaper requoted Thompson. “The mayor has had a chance to spend a lot of time with me. He’s seen me grow up and evolve in my professional career. My education and experience speak for themselves.”


CEO Watch: Taking the Lead

David Nachman, ’93
CEO
Phoenix Energy Technologies, Inc.

Based in Los Angeles, the firm develops technologies to consolidate various types of energy data into a centralized control system.


CEO Watch: Making Headlines

Kenneth Hennings, ’70
Chairman and CEO
Hensaal Management Group, Inc.

Hennings founded the Chicago-based, minority-owned food service company 39 years ago. “I looked around and saw very little precooked meals outside the traditional TV dinners,” Hennings told the Chicago Defender in a November 19 profile. “And most of these products were not healthy either.” He created Southern Chef, the article said, a line of spices, seasonings, snacks, prepared foods, and frozen foods.

Carl Hull, ’82
President and CEO
Gen-Probe Incorporated
A proposed medical device tax, part of health care reform, would hinder financing for innovation in the medical device and diagnostics industry, Hull said in a Q&A in the San Diego Union-Tribune November 30. “Diagnostic tests are typically one of the lowest-cost items of all the procedures that can be done to you in a health care setting,” he said. “It’s estimated that diagnostic tests account for anywhere from 2 to 4 percent of total health care spending, but they influence 65 to 70 percent of health-care decision making. The fact of the matter is that a diagnostic test can for a relatively small amount of money provide extremely valuable information that reduces overall spending.”


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