Retirement Industry People Moves

Vestwell Hires VP of Sales; Fiduciary Benchmarks Revamping Key Teams; Great-West Investments Expands Leadership Team; and more.

Vestwell Hires VP of Sales

Paul Newmann has joined Vestwell as vice president of Sales. He will be responsible for implementing business development strategies and goals with financial advisers. In addition, Newmann is tasked with defining sales processes that drive desired sales outcomes as well as identifying improvements where and when required.

Newmann served as the head of adviser and channel distribution for the Betterment for Business retirement platform. In this position, he sourced new business for the company’s retirement plan products and oversaw strategic sales operations. Prior to that, Newmann was VP of sales for Mesirow Financial where he worked with the large recordkeepers, RIAs, and asset managers to drive adoption of 3(21) and 3(38) fiduciary services for retirement plans. Newmann started his career at the communications firm FleishmanHillard as an account supervisor responsible for business development, client relationships and account management for a portfolio of financial services and investor relations clients.

“We are excited to welcome Paul to the Vestwell team,” says Vestwell CEO Aaron Schumm. “A large part of our early success is backboned by the great talent we have brought together. Paul’s talents are purely additive to Vestwell and our future clients. As we strategically build out our sales division, adding leaders like Paul, we will increase our outreach to financial advisers in need of low-cost, simplified retirement solutions.”

Vestwell is a fiduciary white-label retirement platform for the financial adviser community and beyond.

NEXT:Fiduciary Benchmarks Revamping Key Teams

Fiduciary Benchmarks Revamping Key Teams

Fiduciary Benchmarks (FBi) is making major enhancements to its Client ServicesMarketing and Technology teams.  

The firm is expanding their Broker/Dealer and Advisor Service Team by 50% to support increased volumes. Ivana Polonijo will join as vice presidentClient Success. In this new role, Polonijo is tasked with refining the integrated client experience which will leverage best practices for client onboarding and engagement. Prior to joining Fiduciary Benchmarks, Polonijo led the Retirement Services team at M Financial and was responsible for a qualified plan line of business representing more than $20 billion in assets under the advisement of more than 60 independent financial adviser firms.

Maura Gilson has been named vice presidentMarketing for the firm. She is responsible for developing and implementing the marketing strategy driven to grow the brand in both the defined contribution and IRA spaces, while increasing engagement and client conversion. Prior to joining Fiduciary Benchmarks, Gilson worked for Prudential Annuities where she was a Series 6-licensed, Senior Marketing Management Specialist. She’s also held marketing roles at UnitedHealth Group, Gartner and Save the Children.

The Fiduciary Benchmarks Technology team has doubled in size during the last six months to support new product innovation and technology development for both the retirement plan and IRA marketplaces.

“Growth in good ideas leads to growth in revenue, which leads to growth in good and talented people to execute those ideas,” says Tom KmakCEO of Fiduciary Benchmarks. “We are proud to add such talented individuals as Ivana and Maura to our team as we continue to help our clients use our services to protect plan sponsors, improve outcomes for participants and ensure their fees are reasonable.”

NEXT:Great-West Investments Expands Leadership Team

Great-West Investments Expands Leadership Team

Great-West Investments has appointed Robert G. Capone as its senior vice president of salesJeremy Hersch, CFA, has been appointed as the firm’s vice president of participant advisory services. Both individuals joined the organization May 30. 

Capone most recently served as managing director, head of defined contribution and sub advisory, at AQR Capital Management. Beforehand, he spent eight years at BNY Mellon Investment Management leading its defined contribution and sub-advisory businesses. In both roles, he built new business models. He also spent 10 years at Putnam Investments in a variety of retirement business leadership positions including managing director, participant services. He has a bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College and an master’s degree from Dartmouth’s Amos Tuck School of Business Administration.  

Prior to joining Great-West Investments, Hersch served as head of advice, portfolio and planning services for Transamerica in Harrison, New York. There, he created and led a product management team for the institutional retirement plan market. He had direct oversight for managed account, advice services and custom model portfolio solutions as well as retirement planning tools. The Princeton University alumn also worked at financial advisory firm Trinsum Group in New York City, where he helped create a new managed account offering.  

“As a firm that is committed to providing innovative investment products and services, Great-West Investments is taking the next step forward with talented new leaders who bring an experienced hand and fresh perspective to the needs of our clients,” says David L. Musto, president of Great-West Investments. “Our goals are to expand the reach of our products and services and to enhance their value to retirement investors. We’re confident Rob and Jeremy will help us reach these objectives.” 

NEXT:New York Life Aims to Integrate Management Team

New York Life Aims to Integrate Management Team

New York Life Investment Management has expanded roles for two senior leaders of its executive team. Kirk Lehneis, chief operating officer, adds the retail business MainStay Funds and IndexIQ to his portfolio. John Grady, senior managing director and vice chairman of New York Life Investment Management International will also serve as chief administrative officer. He will be responsible for strategy, mergers and acquisitions as well as business development.

The firm says these moves support the company's strategic growth priorities while creating a more integrated management team.

"Kirk and John have made tremendous contributions to NYLIM over the last several years as we've built out our international footprint and expanded our capabilities to meet the needs of a diverse, global investor community," says NYLIM CEO, Yie-Hsin Hung. "Both have demonstrated outstanding leadership skills and an ability to lead organizations in these complex times. We congratulate them on their achievements, and look forward to their continued success in advancing our business strategy." 

NEXT: VMS Selects Ascensus as Recordkeeper 

VMS Selects Ascensus as Recordkeeper 

Vertical Management Systems (VMS) has selected Ascensus as the preferred recordkeeper for plan sponsors on the Retirement Revolution platform.

VMS says it chose Ascensus to be its preferred service provider due to its close working relationship and a shared commitment to the small 401(k) market. In addition, VMS will no longer service plans internally. It will focus on development of the Retirement Revolution platform, as well as its process-and-control and data-aggregation products.

“Ascensus was a natural choice for us because they have been using our process-and-control and data aggregation technology—the backbone of Retirement Revolution—since 2009,” says Kevin Rafferty, president and CEO at VMS. “By leveraging their existing infrastructure, Ascensus is well-suited to provide a seamless transition for the plan sponsors on our platform.”

NEXT: KeyBank to Acquire Morningstar's HelloWallet

KeyBank to Acquire Morningstar’s HelloWallet

Morningstar announced that KeyBank will be acquiring its finance software HelloWallet following customary closing conditions. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Approximately 36 HelloWallet employees will join KeyBank. The employee teams will continue to be based in Washington, D.C., and Chicago.

HelloWallet runs finance software designed to help users improve their financial wellness. It offers an array of digital tools that provide user-friendly insights which KeyBank then combines with personalized guidance from bankers to help clients improve their financial wellness.

Through an exclusive relationship established in 2015, KeyBank became the only banking institution providing access to HelloWallet's personal finance platform. Morningstar notes that since then, hundreds of thousands of clients have utilized the program.

KeyBank proprietary research shows using HelloWallet's digital tools also boosted clients' financial confidence. Those who moved on to regular financial wellness reviews with their personal bankers stated they found high value in these services.

"KeyBank is transforming our clients' banking experience by embedding financial wellness into every interaction, whether digitally, at the branch, or via telephone,” says Dennis Devine, co-president, KeyBank Community Bank and head of Key Consumer and Business Banking segment. “We are committed to keeping our clients' financial wellness at the core of our relationship with them.”

"The decision to sell HelloWallet aligns with both Morningstar's and KeyBank's long-term strategy," says Brock Johnsonwho heads up Morningstar's global retirement and workplace business. “Morningstar has significantly enhanced its overall capability set since the acquisition of HelloWallet more than three years ago and we will continue to incorporate many of the financial wellness best practices into our broad-based solutions. As HelloWallet's largest customer, KeyBank was HelloWallet's single greatest source of new users and this agreement allows them to advance their mission even further."

NEXT: LPL Chief Risk Officer Takes Over Legal and Government Relations

LPL Chief Risk Officer Takes Over Legal and Government Relations

Retail investment advisory firm and independent broker/dealer LPL Financial announced that current managing director and chief risk officer Michelle Oroschakoff will expand her responsibilities to include oversight of the firm’s legal and government relations functions as chief legal and risk officer, effective June 9.

Oroschakoff takes over general counsel duties following the departure of David Bergers, who will be departing LPL to accept a position in private practice. Oroschakoff joined LPL in 2013 from Morgan Stanley, where she was the global chief risk officer for the Wealth Management division. She will be responsible for company-wide risk management processes and controls; managing compliance and governance; and enhancing the corporate risk profile as chair of LPL’s Risk Oversight Committee.

“During her four years at LPL, Michelle’s leadership has had a transformative effect not only on our governance, risk, and compliance functions but also on the culture of risk management across the firm,” says Dan Arnold, LPL president and CEO. “She has a proven ability to work cross-functionally to achieve outcomes in the best interest of investors, advisers and the company, all while managing through a tremendous amount of change in the regulatory environment.”

Oroschakoff earned a Juris Doctorate, cum laude, from the University of Michigan and a bachelor’s degree in English Literature from the University of Oregon.

NEXT:Janus Capital Completes Merger

Janus Capital Completes Merger

Janus Capital Group and Henderson Group announced the completion of an all-stock merger of equals to form Janus Henderson Group. Janus Henderson lists its shares on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the ticker symbol “JHG.”

“At our core, Janus Henderson is focused on delivering for our clients,” says Andrew Formica, Janus Henderson’s co-chief executive officer. “Our work together since announcement has reinforced our shared culture and aligned business goals. The breadth and depth of investment professionals and the broad array of talented colleagues gives us an enviable position to meet our clients’ needs.”

Dick Weil, Janus Henderson’s co-chief executive officer, said: “The combined firm, Janus Henderson, creates a truly global active asset manager that is well-positioned to succeed in the investment marketplace, with expanded product suites, greater financial strength and better talent, benefiting our clients, shareholders and employees.”

NEXT: JPMAM Names Head of U.S. ETF Business

JPMAM Names Head of U.S. ETF Business

J.P. Morgan Asset Management (JPMAM) announced that Joanna Gallegos has been named head of its U.S. ETF business, reporting to Mike Camacho, global head of Beta Strategies

Gallegos has been instrumental in the firm's U.S. fund launches, which have included 13 product launches with more than $1 billion in assets under management. She joined the firm in 2013 as head of ETF Product Development, having previously worked at BlackRock iShares for 14 years, where she held a number of leadership positions, including managing director in the Strategic Product Initiatives Group. 

Gallegos succeeds Bob Deutsch in this role, who announced his retirement earlier this year.  She will also assume Deutsch's role as president of the U.S. ETF complexDeutsch will continue in his role as chairman of JPM's ETF Board.

Natixis Adds Retirement Exec to Support TDFs

Natixis Adds Retirement Exec to Support TDFs  

Natixis Global Asset Management has appointed Marla Skeffington to vice president of Retirement Strategies. Skeffington joins the firm from T. Rowe Price where she served as head of Client Services, U.S. Intermediaries. Previously, she worked for Western Asset Management as an Institutional Sales Executive.

In this newly created position, Skeffington will be responsible for business development for the Natixis Sustainable Future Funds, the recently launched target-date funds offered by Natixis, and supporting the firm’s growing defined contribution and personal retirement business efforts.

“We’re thrilled to bring Marla on board to support our ongoing retirement initiatives,” says Ed Farrington, executive vice president of Retirement Strategies at Natixis Global Asset Management. “With the recent launch of the Natixis Sustainable Future Funds, Marla will be instrumental in raising awareness around retirement savings strategies that can help plan participants align their investments with their personal values, and fostering dialogue among plan sponsors and investors looking for these options.”

Skeffington will be based in Boston. She has more than 20 years of investment industry experience, and earned her bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of New Hampshire and her MBA from Suffolk University. She is FINRA Series 7, 63 and 24 licensed.