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Third Annual CAIA Leadership Award for Excellence in Alternative Investment Education presented to Eric R. Breval; First Annual CAIA Corporate Recognition Award presented to Altegris and NEPC; First Annual Award for Academic Excellence and Alternative Investment Research presented to Thomas Schneeweis, Ph.D.
New York, November 30, 2012 -- The Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst Association® (CAIA), the global benchmark for alternative investment education, celebrated its 10th anniversary at its Third Annual Leadership Awards Dinner in the Starlight Roof of the Waldorf-Astoria in New York on Thursday, November 29, 2012. Florence Lombard, CEO and one of the founding architects of CAIA, welcomed two hundred distinguished thought leaders from academia and the alternative investment industry, including members of CAIA’s global community in the Americas, Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa, who saluted a decade of achievement in alternative investment education.
"Tonight, as we celebrate the 10th anniversary of CAIA, we would like to recognize the vital role carried out by CAIA chapter executives and all member volunteers, many of whom from all over the world are with us this evening," said Florence Lombard. "It takes many different individuals to build out an organization such as CAIA to ensure its growth and success over so many years. Tonight, we salute you, and look forward to perpetuating -- with you -- our mandate to be the globally recognized reliable source for all alternative investment education."
The North America event capped off a year of celebrations, including education symposiums and membership events, all over the world with the announcement of the recipients of CAIA’s three awards: Third Annual CAIA Leadership Award for Excellence in Alternative Investment Education; and in celebration of the 10thanniversary, the establishment of the First Annual CAIA Corporate Recognition Award and the First Annual Award for Academic Excellence and Alternative Investment Research. Eric R. Breval, CEO of Swiss Federal Social Security Funds in Geneva, Switzerland, former head of the CAIA Switzerland Chapter and a member of the first CAIA class awarded the CAIA charter designation in 2003, was presented with the Third Annual CAIA Leadership Award for Excellence in Alternative Investment Education by Jane Buchan, chair of the CAIA board and CEO of Pacific Alternative Asset Management Company® (PAAMCO). The award was established in 2010 to recognize industry leaders who have made outstanding contributions to the CAIA Association and its mission to raise the standards of knowledge, ethics and professionalism in the field of alternative education.
Dick Pfister, executive VP and Managing Director of Altegris and the first CAIA member; and Sean W. B. Gill, partner, Alternative Assets, NEPC, LLC (New England Pensions Consultants) and a CAIA Charter holder, separately accepted the First Annual CAIA Corporate Recognition Award from Andrew Baker, a CAIA Association board member and CEO of the Alternative Investment Management Association (AIMA), on behalf of their respective companies. The award was established by CAIA’s board to celebrate and acknowledge the exceptional level of commitment a company has demonstrated over a sustained period of time in supporting its employees’ pursuit of the CAIA designation.
The big surprise of the evening was the announcement of the establishment of the First Annual Award for Academic Excellence and Alternative Investment Research which was presented to Thomas R. Schneeweis, Ph.D., a founding board member of CAIA and the Michael and Cheryl Philipp Professor of Finance at the Isenberg School of Management at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. The award was presented – to a standing ovation -- by Mark J.P. Anson, managing partner and chief investment officer at Oak Hill Investment Management and the 2011 Annual CAIA Leadership Award recipient, to Dr. Schneeweis for his extraordinary vision for the global alternative investment industry and his commitment and passion for academic achievement at the highest level in alternative education. As a result of Dr. Schneeweis’ leadership, CAIA has become a recognized think tank for academic and industry thought leaders, and a rich depository for ideas that will help CAIA continue its mission to promote professional development through continuing education, innovative research and thought leadership, and advocate high standards of professional ethics in the alternative investment industry over the next 10 years.
In addition to CAIA Chair Jane Buchan, Andrew Baker and Thomas Schneeweis Ph.D., other CAIA board members who attended the event were Robert De Rito, Ph.D, Peter Douglas and Alexander Ineichen. CAIA also thanked the event sponsors – Alternative Investment Management Association (AIMA), Pacific Alternative Asset Management Company (PAAMCO), Altegris, Pertrac, Institutional Investor Journals, LYXOR Asset Management and Pearson.
About the CAIA Charter and CAIA Charter Holders: Many of the guests at the event, who are practitioners in hedge funds, private equity, venture capital and other alternative investments, are holders of the coveted CAIA Charter designation which is the benchmark of excellence for alternative investment education. In 2003, when a group of academics in Amherst, MA created what is now recognized as the most elite educational program for the alternative investments industry, CAIA awarded its first CAIA Charter to 43 industry practitioners. In 2012, charter holders increased by 14% to more than 6,000 in 80 countries with their successful completion of the intensive course work (Levels I and II). As the alternatives industry continues to grow over the next 10 years, it is anticipated that the number of candidates for the CAIA Charter -- the only educational standard uniquely designed for individuals specializing in institutional quality alternative investments -- will continue to increase exponentially.
About the CAIA Association: The Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst Association®, based in Amherst, MA, is the global benchmark for alternative investment education. It grants the CAIA Charter upon successful completion of two levels of qualifying exams combined with relevant professional experience; sponsors research and publications; connects alternative investments experts around the world; and advocates for the highest standards in professional conduct. The CAIA Association has more than 6,000 members in 80 countries – in the Americas, Europe, Asia and Africa – with five regional offices and 15 affiliated chapters. For information about CAIA, please go to CAIA.org.
PRESS RELATIONS: For additional information and photos, please contact Barbara Tollis of Hampton Hedges via mobile 917.539.9709 or email HamptonHedges@gmail.com.
(l-r) Mark Anson, CAIA Award Recipient Thomas R. Schneeweis, Ph.D., Florence Lombard
Photo credit: www.AnnieWatt.com