New Hire Roundup: Westport Resources Promotes DeLaura

FINRA promotes Axelrod, Welcomes Sokobin; more

New Hires logoThis week in new hires, Westport Resources promoted Christopher DeLaura and added Ashley Schexnaildre, Susan Axelrod was promoted and Jonathan Sokobin was added by FINRA, Keith Fletcher was named vice chairman at American Independence, Angelo Pirrito went to HSBC Global Asset Management, and Agecroft Partners brought in Jim Sauls.

Also, Alliance Benefit Group welcomed Don Mackanos and added its first West Coast licensee, Dorothea Rodd was promoted at New York Life, U.S. Bank announced appointments in San Francisco and Chicago, and Mike Anderson joined the board at the Bank Insurance and Securities Association.

Westport Resources Promotes DeLaura, Adds Schexnaildre

Westport Resources announced the promotion of Christopher DeLaura to chief operating officer of its wealth management division, the private client group. Additionally, the firm welcomed Ashley Schexnaildre as controller of both Westport Resources Management, which includes the private client group, and its broker-dealer division, Westport Resources Investment Services.

DeLaura joined in 2010 as a financial planning specialist in the private client group. In addition to his new responsibilities, he will continue to manage the firm’s global tactical asset allocation investment strategy. Prior to joining, he worked at UBS for 13 years in several roles in the corporate offices on strategy and different technologies. He also worked with and managed assets for high-net-worth individuals.

Schexnaildre joined on April 1, and most recently served as interim controller for M6 Partners/Capital Lodging in N.D. At the same time he served as controller for that company’s owner, Commonwealth Advisors, in Baton Rouge, La.

Axelrod Promoted, Sokobin Welcomed at FINRA

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) announced that Susan Axelrod will become executive vice president of regulatory operations. In this role, she will oversee enforcement, the office of fraud detection and market intelligence and member regulation (sales practice, risk oversight and operational regulation and shared services). Previously she was the head of the member regulation sales practice area. Mike Rufino, chief operating officer of member regulation—sales practice, will assume the role of acting head of the sales practice group. Axelrod will report directly to Richard Ketchum, chairman and CEO.

Before becoming head of member regulation sales practice, Axelrod was SVP and deputy of regulatory operations, where she assisted in the oversight of market regulation, enforcement and member regulation. Prior to joining in 2007, Axelrod was chief of staff to the CEO of NYSE Regulation. Axelrod began her career at NYSE in 1989 as a staff attorney in the division of enforcement and became an enforcement director in 1997.

FINRA also announced that Dr. Jonathan Sokobin, currently acting deputy director, research and analysis in the office of financial research at the U.S. Treasury Department, will join as chief economist and SVP. He will also report directly to Ketchum and will start on May 20.

In 2011, Sokobin joined Treasury as chief of analytical strategy in the office of financial research. Earlier, he was acting director of the SEC's division of risk, strategy and financial innovation (Risk Fin). He joined the SEC staff full time in 2000 and was named deputy chief economist in 2004. From 2008 to 2010, he served as director of the former office of risk assessment.American Independence Names Keith Fletcher Vice Chairman

American Independence Financial Services (American Independence) announced that Keith Fletcher has joined the firm as vice chairman and a member of the executive committee.

Fletcher, with 30 years of experience, was recently chief marketing officer and head of product management for Security Global and Rydex Investments (later Guggenheim Investments). Prior to that, he was managing director at Lyster Watson. Previously he served as EVP/chief marketing officer for Van Eck Global. He has also held senior sales and marketing positions at Fidelity Investments and Furman Selz Asset Management. He started his career as an institutional marketing manager for the Dreyfus Corp.

HSBC Global Asset Management Appoints Angelo Pirrito

HSBC Global Asset Management (USA) announced that Angelo Pirrito has joined as vice president, RIA sales, based in San Francisco. In this newly created role, Pirrito will be responsible for distributing emerging-market and international investment products through RIAs, trust companies, private banks and family offices on the west coast. He reports to Damion Hendrickson, SVP and national head of RIA sales.

Pirrito has more than 20 years of financial services experience and has spent more than a decade working directly with the RIA channel. He was most recently with Direxion, where he was director of sales. He previously worked at other firms, including Deutsche Bank, Julius Baer Investment Management and Merrill Lynch Investment Managers.

Agecroft Partners Hires European Marketing Head

Agecroft Partners has hired Jim Sauls as managing director and head of European marketing. Saul’s responsibilities will include heading Agecroft’s marketing efforts in Europe and assisting with due diligence on potential managers the firm may represent.

He brings more than 20 years of institutional experience marketing hedge funds and derivative products on a global basis. Before joining, he spent 10 years with Calatrava Securities, where he was director of marketing and CEO of their affiliated commodity pool operator. Prior to that, he held senior marketing and sales roles at both Fimat USA and Sanwa Futures.

Alliance Benefit Group Announces New Executive Director, West Coast Licensee

Alliance Benefit Group (ABG) announced that Don (Mac) Mackanos has been named executive director. He will spearhead efforts to expand the brand nationally and recruit new licensees to the ABG network. He will also focus on creating new revenue opportunities for licensees. Mackanos joins from TRUSTIVO. Prior to that, he ran the retirement services segment for SunGard.

ABG also announced that it has added Spectrum Pension Consultants to its national network. Spectrum was incorporated in 1978 and has an open-architecture 401(k) platform. Spectrum is the 14th licensee to become affiliated with ABG and its first on the West Coast.

New York Life Promotes Dorothea Rodd to SVP

New York Life has announced the promotion of Dorothea (Dottie) Rodd to SVP and head of corporate services. In this role, she has oversight of procurement, business and financial services, process enhancement programs, corporate insurance risk management, corporate aircraft, travel and dining services, corporate security, business resilience, facilities management and corporate records management. She reports to Frank Boccio, EVP and chief administrative officer.

Rodd joined in 1981 as an auditor trainee and has held positions of increasing responsibility. Since 2012, she has been head of corporate services, providing corporate service functions and support to the company. Prior to that, she served as first vice president in human resources, where she was responsible for operations and service functions; and as a vice president in the corporate services department in charge of procedures and systems for accounts payable, the travel reimbursement system, credit card administration and financial analysis for procurement.

U.S. Bank Appoints Oliveira in San Francisco, Names Rixie in Chicago

U.S. Bank announced today that Martim De Arantes Oliveira has been appointed regional managing director for Ascent Private Capital Management of U.S. Bank in San Francisco. In his new role, he is responsible for driving the growth of the new San Francisco office, which will open this summer, and leads an initial team of seven professionals. He reports to Michael Cole, president of Ascent Private Capital Management.

Oliveira brings more than 16 years of experience in the financial services industry, primarily assisting ultrahigh-net-worth families with wealth management. He previously served as the West Coast regional director for Silver Bridge Advisors in San Francisco. Previously, he served as a founding and managing principal of H&S Financial Advisors.

U.S. Bank also announced that Gerald Rixie has been named a wealth management consultant for The Private Client Reserve in Chicago.

Rixie brings a range of experience to his new post that includes work with HNW families and individuals, corporate finance, investments and operations. Before joining, he served as CFO of Calamos Family Partners in Naperville, Ill.

Securities America’s Anderson Joins BISA Board

Mike Anderson, first vice president of financial institutions and business growth at Securities America, has been named to the Bank Insurance and Securities Association’s (BISA) board of directors.

A former president of Accutrade and Ameritrade Inc., Anderson joined Securities America in January 2012 with more than 20 years of industry experience. Prior to joining Securities America, he was vice president of development and executive coach for Leadership Resources, a management development company. He was also the founding vice president of Ameritrade Advisor Services. Following his 10 years with Ameritrade Holding Corporation,Andersonwas president of InfoUSA, a direct mail marketing list manufacturer, and a principal at Charter Hill Partners, a regional mergers and acquisitions firm.

Read the April 17 New Hire Roundup at AdvisorOne.

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