CFA Society Chicago Chairman’s Letter to Membership

Marie C. Winters, CFA

I am proud to report that thanks to the efforts of our volunteers, sponsors, and staff, CFA Society Chicago had a very successful FY2017. During the year, we hosted over 150 events to advance educational knowledge, professional excellence, and high ethical standards, and also to enhance the greater good of our community. We also finished FY2017 in a solid financial position with reserves of approximately $2.1 million, up 11% from the prior fiscal year end.

Highlights of our key accomplishments in FY2017 include the following:

Excellence in Education & Ethics

Our education programming spanned a variety of large and small events. Our popular monthly Distinguished Speakers Series drew top leaders, including Liz Ann Sonders, Charles Evans, Richard Driehaus, and Gary Brinson, CFA. Taking advantage of our new office location, we launched the Vault Series where we invited experts to speak on niche topics, including market signals for capital flows. At our 2016 Annual Dinner featuring keynote speaker Cliff Asness, we celebrated over 1,000 registrants for the second time. Investing in Innovation and Investing for the Long-Term consisted of panel presentations that also drew a large number of attendees.

We culminated our year with our largest Society event outside of the Annual Dinner: Active vs. Passive, featuring a discussion between Nobel Laureate, Dr. Eugene F. Fama and Dr. Robert Litterman. Over 400 people attended the event in Chicago and more than 200 additional attendees registered for the live webcast. Subsequently, over 2,000 individuals have watched the archived webcast, showcasing the value your Society brings to CFA charterholders globally.

Career Advancement for Members

Two years ago we committed to invest in our members’ careers. Our member-only program offerings have expanded greatly, focusing on development of soft skills and opportunities to explore alternate career paths at our Annual Career Fair and the Industry Roundtables event. During FY2017, we launched a new entrepreneurial series, Starting an RIA Firm. This has proved to be a big success with our members and we will continue to build on this series in the current fiscal year. Finally, we provided our members frequent occasions to expand their professional networks across our educational, professional development, and social events.

Giving Back to Our Community

The Society launched a financial literacy initiative that reached over 900 high school students in under-privileged neighborhoods by partnering with the Economic Awareness Council (EAC). The program experienced a strong start, attracting more than twice as many volunteers as we had targeted. Interest among our members in this program continues to grow and has already nearly doubled from last year’s volunteers.

Upcoming CFA Society Chicago Events
The Society is proud to announce these upcoming events:
  • September 26 : Education Seminars is hosting Water’s Impact On Investing;
  • September 27: Networking with Leadership;
  • October 3: Our next Distinguished Speaker is Ronan Ryan , President of IEX Group;
  • October 4: Starting Your Own RIA (Part 2): Tips for Marketing and Business Development; and
  • November 1: Our 31st Annual Dinner featuring Keynote David Rubenstein, Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Carlyle Group is at the Hyatt Regency.

Please visit our website at www.cfachicago.org to register for these events.

Looking Ahead to Fiscal Year 2018

Recently, I and the rest of the Executive Committee had the pleasure of meeting with several leaders of CFA Institute to further plans for the current fiscal year. CFA Institute is pleased with the Society’s efforts and will continue to provide solid support for us to pursue a variety of initiatives for education, branding, and technology enhancements, including a new website in the near future. We came away feeling that clearly, CFA Society Chicago is considered a leader among societies globally – we are well-recognized for our leadership and innovative thinking in education and ethics initiatives.

Over the coming year, you can expect to see efforts focused on preparing our members for the future. Many dynamic shifts are impacting our industry, including evolving investor preferences, technological change, and financial regulations, to name a few. These secular trends make it imperative that we have greater professional dexterity in meeting our clients’ expectations as well as in managing our careers. Our volunteers will continue to play a key role in helping all of us prepare for the future and thrive.

I am truly honored and excited to serve as chairman of the oldest and sixth largest CFA Society in the world. With over 4,700 members, CFA Society Chicago is well-positioned given our abundant resources – talented volunteers, dedicated staff, and financial position.

Very best,
Marie C. Winters, CFA
Chairman, CFA Society Chicago

CFA Society Chicago Chairman’s Letter to Membership

img_1799Dear Fellow Charterholders and CFA Society Chicago Members:

Thank you all for your support throughout the first half of the 2016 – 2017 fiscal year.

During the first six months, the CFA Society Chicago Executive Committee traveled to multiple CFA Institute meetings and conferences to show our support, share best practices and network with other societies and CFA Institute peers. It is clear that CFA Society Chicago is an integral part of the global success of CFA Institute (CFAI). Our counsel is highly sought after on governance, event management and community engagement. We will continue to strive to be a global leader and aid our industry as we face the challenges ahead.

The 2016 Annual Dinner was a success and the feedback from the survey indicates that the attendees enjoyed the event. Our keynote speaker, Cliff Asness, PhD., provided an in-depth discussion on current markets and the challenges of today’s hedge fund industry. We are grateful for his time and informative insights. We would like to thank our staff for all their hard work as they organized another great event! Furthermore, thank you to our 60+ sponsors whose generosity provides invaluable financial support and signifies the value the Annual Dinner brings to our investment community. Thank you!

On March 7th the Education Advisory Group welcomed Robert Gordon, PhD., Northwestern University, and Deidre McCloskey, PhD., University of Illinois Chicago, at the Society’s Investing for the Long Term: Productivity, Capital Markets Expectations and Portfolio Management event. The speakers and panelists discussed how technology will affect the future of our economy and the investment implications.

Our local financial literacy efforts continue to gain strong momentum. Between October 2016 and January 2017, the program had 42 members respond to the initial call for volunteers with 22 members attending school visits at ten high schools. Our members also contributed to On the Money, an entrepreneurship, finance and business journal created by teens for teens, by assisting with the writing process, sharing perspectives, discussing financial concepts and serving as a sounding board. Our partnership with the Economic Awareness Council is thriving and we continue to receive positive feedback from the members attending these school visits. The Society also led an information session at the City of Chicago Treasurer’s Office in February 2017. A special thank you to all our volunteers, the Membership Engagement Advisory Group and Co-Chairs Maura Murrihy, CFA, and Aaron Taylor, CFA!

We were proud to again sponsor the CFA Institute Gender Diversity Conference held in Boston last fall. The conference provided a detailed argument for increasing success through diversity. We encourage all our employers to embrace diversity and we are happy to supply literature created by the Institute to support this effort. The third annual Alpha and Gender Diversity Conference will be held at the Westin Harbour Castle in Toronto, Canada September 18 – 19, 2017.

Other Society highlights for the first half include:

  • Oversubscribed demand for CFA Institute Scholarships: 49 applicants for 35 local scholarships.
  • Research Challenge started with 11 teams focused on McDonald’s. Illinois Institute of Technology won the contest and will represent the Society at the Regional contest in Seattle in April 2017. Congratulations and Good luck!
  • The Professional Development Advisory Group has rolled out its redesigned mentoring program featuring ten mentorships for a six month evaluation. Special thanks to Shai Dobrusin, CFA, Jay Bullie, CFA, and Umed Saidov, CFA, for their efforts in redesigning the program.

The 2nd Annual Financial Compensation Survey results are now available on our website in the Career Management section. The report compiles compensation practices in the Chicago area conducted in mid-2016. The survey requested data on numerous aspects of compensation. In addition to covering base salary and total compensation, the survey addressed the respondent’s CFA charterholder status, level of education, and occupation. Information on the type and size of the firm as well as the amount of assets under management was included in the survey. The survey captured annual salary change data and the respondent’s view on the adequacy of compensation and the desire to explore other job opportunities. We hope you all find this information useful.

We are very excited about the remainder of our fiscal year. To aid in professional development we will be hosting our Annual Career Fair on March 24th, and a presentation on Executive Presence and Leadership Principles by Patricia Cook from Patricia Cook & Associates on March 28th. The Distinguished Speaker Series will welcome T. Bondurant French, CFA, Executive Chairman from Adams Street Partners, who will provide an update on the Private Equity Industry on April 5th. There are also multiple chances for networking at social events throughout the year. All our events can be viewed on our website in the event section. Please join us!

Lastly, on Tuesday, June 13, 2017, we will be having The Active vs. Passive Debate: Trends, Insights, and Case Studies event. This event will address Trends and Insights into ETFs as well as reviewing Case Studies in the application of ETFs in portfolios. The keynote for the event will be Nobel Prize Winner Eugene Fama, PhD. He will be interviewed by Robert Litterman, Senior Partner at Kepos Capital. Mr. Litterman retired in 2009 from Goldman Sachs previously serving as Head of Quantitative Investment Strategies. This session is a reprisal of their interview five years ago from the CFA Global Conference held in Chicago. A special thank you to the Education Advisory Group Planning Committee: Garrett Glawe, CFA, Ben Johnson, CFA, and Cindy Tsai, CFA. This should be a thought provoking event as our industry continues to evolve rapidly.

These programs do not happen without the valuable time and efforts of our members. All of our programming is designed by volunteers sharing ideas on what is important to our industry, community and future. It is a great opportunity to meet fellow charterholders and build your personal network. Please consider joining one of our Advisory Groups and help deliver value added programming and services while helping to promote the charter in our community. For additional information and to learn more about volunteer opportunities please visit our website at www.CFAChicago.org.

 

Best Regards,

Douglas Jackman, CFA
Chairman, CFA Society Chicago