Join us for this NEW, progressive networking event aimed at helping early and mid career professionals grow in their careers and learn more about roles available in the investment industry!
Senior industry leaders will host a table discussion based on their area of experience and share about their career path, experiences, role and organization followed by Q & A from participants. Participants will rank areas to explore for 25-30 minute increments of time after registering for the event. Industry areas will be: economist/strategy, mutual funds, institutional sales/marketing, investor relations, asset management and technical analysis.
Senior Leaders Bios:
Bill Merz, CFA – SVP - Head of Fixed Income Research, U.S. Bank Wealth Management
Bill leads the investment team responsible for providing fixed income guidance for U.S. Bank Wealth Management. These sector-specific and cross-sector relative value views contribute to the determination of strategic and tactical asset allocation guidance. With more than 15 years of capital markets experience, Bill is frequently quoted in industry publications, such as Bloomberg News, CNBC and The Wall Street Journal. Prior to his current role, Bill served as co-head of the Derivatives and Structured Products group for U.S. Bank Wealth Management, responsible for research and development of hedging and risk-reshaping strategies and concentrated position management. Before joining U.S. Bank, he valued, acquired and structured distressed loan portfolio and aviation deals for an $8 billion hedge fund. Bill also served as the fixed income strategist for one of the largest middle market investment banks in the country, building and leading fixed income strategy and developing cross-sector relative value trade ideas. In addition, Bill has performed consulting work in Boston, London and Central America. Bill is a member of CFA Society Minnesota and CFA Institute and serves on the board of the Association of Medicine Lake Area Citizens. Bill also enjoys spending time with his wife and two children and being on the water, whether he’s boating, fishing, kayaking or swimming.
Robert Buss, CFA – Marketing and Client Services, DGI
Robert serves as Disciplined Growth Investors' Director of Marketing. In this role he is responsible for managing sales and marketing efforts. Disciplined Growth Investors initially hired Robert in 2000 as a member of the investment team, but his desire to share the story of DGI in an effort to grow the business lead to his decision to join the marketing department in 2003.
Prior to joining Disciplined Growth Investors, Robert enjoyed 12 years in the field of financial services and investment management with US Bank, N.A., in Minneapolis. Initially his role was as a consultant/project manager for investment technologies and systems. In this capacity he built an extensive network of analytical and decision support tools used throughout the investment management process. By 1996, he was approaching completion of his night school MBA program so he welcomed the opportunity to transition to the position of large cap diversified and capital goods analyst. After one year he focused his analytical expertise on technology companies. Prior to his departure from US Bank, Robert was the lead technology analyst for five of First American Fund's small and mid cap mutual funds with combined assets exceeding $2.5 billion.
Tony Carideo, CFA – President, The Carideo Group
The Carideo Group is a public and investor relations firm founded in 2003, providing financial and PR communications services to public and private companies. With a team of 13 professionals nationwide, The Carideo Group, also provides Inspection of Election Services to public companies, validating the results of annual and special meeting election results for more than 200 meetings nationwide each year.
Prior to launching The Carideo Group in 2003, Tony was a senior vice president in the Investor Relations practice at Padilla Speer Beardsley Inc. Before that, he was director of Investor Relations and Treasury Operations at Net Perceptions, a retail and business intelligence software company and in a similar role at Information Advantage, an intelligence software firm. While at Net Perceptions, he supervised the firm's risk and cash management functions, overseeing accounts totaling $120 million. From 1995 until 1999, Tony was an analyst and director of research at John G. Kinnard & Co., of Minneapolis, supervising a staff of 18 analysts and support people, and spent a year at Boatmen's Trust Company in St. Louis as a senior vice president in Institutional Sales and Marketing.
Tony spent most of his career as a journalist, with 14 years at the Star Tribune as a business columnist and reporter, and six years with the Milwaukee Journal. He is a Past President and Chairman of The Board of the CFA (Chartered Financial Analysts) Society of Minnesota.
Kim M. Brustuen, CFA – National Sales Manager, U.S. Bank
Kim is the National Sales Manager of U.S. Bank’s Money Center and has worked in the Bank’s Treasury Division almost 20 years. She is responsible for the leadership and management of the Bank’s institutional fixed income sales representatives throughout the United States. Specifically, she is responsible for helping her team develop profitable new business account relationships, interact with existing customers that require solid experience in handling the largest and most complex accounts, identifying business opportunities based on comprehensive knowledge of customer, markets, products and services and building internal partnerships by educating colleagues and teams throughout the company. She is a Chartered Financial Analyst, member of CFA Institute, and was previously President of CFA Society Minnesota. She spends her free time teaching kids to code through the First Lego League program. Kim holds a B.A. in economics and management as well as a M.B.A. in finance from the University of Minnesota.
Brandon Swensen, CFA – Co-head of Fixed Income, RBC Global Asset Management
Brandon Swensen oversees fixed income research, portfolio management and trading. In addition to shaping overall fixed income philosophy and process, he is a portfolio manager for several cash management and core solutions. Brandon joined RBC GAM-US in 2000 and most recently was a portfolio manager on the mortgage and government team before being promoted to Co-Head. He also held research analyst positions covering asset-backed securities and credit and served as a financial analyst for the firm. Brandon earned a BS in finance from St. Cloud State University and an MBA in finance from the University of St. Thomas. He is a CFA Charterholder and member of the CFA Society of Minnesota.
Craig W. Johnson, CFA – Managing Director, Piper Jaffray
Johnson joined Piper Jaffray in 1995 as an analyst in the firm's private client research department. He offers frequent technical commentary on the broader market and individual stocks. Johnson earned his B.S. degree with an emphasis in finance and marketing and his M.B.A. from Drake University. Johnson holds the Chartered Financial Analyst and Chartered Market Technician designations and is an active member of the Twin Cities Society of Securities Analysts and co-chapter chair of the Minnesota Chapter Market Technician Association. He is also the past President of the Market Technicians Association and leads its Board of Directors.