George Van is Chairman, Founder and CEO of VAN. Since 1992, Mr. Van and his associates have been actively involved in portfolio construction and research on alternative investments. He is internationally recognized as an authority on hedge funds, has been interviewed frequently by the international media and has published numerous articles regarding hedge funds. Mr. Van also has frequently been a speaker at hedge fund symposiums to audiences composed of professional investors. In the early 1990’s, he and his associates performed the first research on reward/risk characteristics of hedge funds using a large statistical sample. This data followed the company’s assembling the largest database of hedge funds at the time, enabling them to perform this pioneering work. As a result of this work, Mr. Van developed the risk measurement statistic, the Van Ratio,™ which the Company currently uses in statistical evaluations of hedge funds.
Prior to his work on alternative investments, Mr. Van managed his family’s portfolio, following a career as founder and manager of substantial companies. Over the years, he has served as a director of various national and international organizations.
E. Ronald Begley, CFP, is the Executive Vice President of VAN. He joined VAN in 1998, providing consulting services to institutions and high-net-worth individuals around the world. His financial services experience has both breadth and depth. It includes both research and managing of equity and fixed income product lines. In addition to having expertise in hedge fund manager selection, Mr. Begley has expertise in fund of funds construction, packaging leverage hedge fund baskets, principal-protected investments and structure notes on underlying hedge fund portfolios.
Prior to joining VAN, Mr. Begley was a founding Partner of Mastrapasqua and Company, a successful southeastern-based money management firm. Previously, he was Partner and Associate Director of Equity Research for J.C. Bradford and Company for 13 years, a trader specializing in the municipal bond markets for W.N. Estes Company which was a regional municipal bond dealer, and a retail account executive for both Merrill Lynch and Shearson, Loeb, Rhodes. Mr. Begley has Certified Financial Planner and Registered Investment Advisor designations and also holds Series 3, Series 7 and Series 63 licenses. He is a graduate of the University of Kentucky and a former Naval Aviator.
John C. Van is the CFO/Sr. Vice President of VAN. One of the founders of the Company, he played a key role in VAN’s groundbreaking research on hedge funds, some of which is described in the About Hedge Funds section of this site. He too is interviewed frequently on hedge funds by the international media. Mr. Van is responsible for all treasury, financial, legal, operational and compliance functions for VAN. Prior to joining the Company, he was a consultant with KPMG Peat Marwick. He holds a Series 28 license.
Dan Hayden, CPA, is the Director of Research of VAN. He joined the Company in 2001 as a member of the sales and consulting team. Prior to joining VAN, Mr. Hayden was a Senior Vice President and Manager of Portfolio Services for a large regional bank. Before that, he was an asset/liability management consultant and portfolio strategist for a regional broker/dealer. Prior to entering the investment banking business, Mr. Hayden spent 10 years in public accounting and was a Senior Manager with KPMG. Mr. Hayden is a Certified Public Accountant and holds Series 7, Series 3 and Series 63 licenses.
Customer Relations Executives
Michael Cross joined VAN in 2002. Previously, he was Managing Director of the Public Finance and Municipal Bond Department of Equitable Securities Corporation, a regional investment banking firm. Earlier, he was a Partner of J.C. Bradford and Company, with responsibility for national and key accounts. Mr. Cross’ prior experience includes holding officeships with several retail brokerage firms including Bear Stearns and Company and Loeb, Rhoades and Company. He has been a Member of the Board Arbitrators for the NASD, an Expert Witness and a Member of the Board of Directors of Next, Inc.
Patrick Davis joined VAN in 2000. Previously, Mr. Davis joined McVean Trading & Investments in 1995 as an economic analyst focusing on the national housing market, becoming an account executive in 1996. Prior to this, he was associated with First Options in Chicago where he managed futures positions for a Euro dollar options market maker. Mr. Davis started his career in 1992 with Dean Witter Reynolds on the trading floor of Chicago. He holds Series 3, Series 63, Series 65, Series 30 and Series 7 licenses.
Scott Ellis joined VAN in 2001. He was previously associated with Merrill Lynch as a financial consultant working with high net worth individuals. Mr. Ellis started his career with J.C. Bradford and Company in Nashville, Tennessee, where he worked in alternative asset strategies trading commodities futures. He currently holds Series 7, Series 3 and Series 66 licenses.
VAN’s total 23-person team of professionals is dedicated to providing an outstanding quality of services and performance to all of VAN’s clients.