9th Annual Investment Symposium

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Margot and Bill Winspear Opera House – Dallas, TX


Many thanks to our remarkable past speakers for their time, insights and support. Our 2015 speakers are listed below.


Leon G. Cooperman

Founder, Chairman and CEO, Omega Advisors, Inc.

At the end of 1991, following 25 years of service, Lee retired from his positions as a General Partner of Goldman, Sachs & Co. and as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Goldman Sachs Asset Management to organize and launch an investment-management business, Omega Advisors, Inc.

At Goldman Sachs, Lee spent 15 years as a Partner and one year (1990-1991) as of-counsel to the Management Committee.  In 1989, he became Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Goldman Sachs Asset Management and Chief Investment Officer of the firm’s equity product line, managing the GS Capital Growth Fund, an open-end mutual fund, for one-and-a-half years.  Prior to those appointments, Lee had spent 22 years in the Investment Research Department as Partner-in-charge, Co-Chairman of the Investment Policy Committee and Chairman of the Stock Selection Committee.  For nine consecutive years, he was voted the number- one portfolio strategist in Institutional Investor Magazine’s annual “All-America Research Team survey.

As a designated Chartered Financial Analyst, Lee is a senior member and past President of the New York Society of Security Analysts.  He is Chairman Emeritus of the Saint Barnabas Development Foundation, a member of the Board of Overseers of the Columbia University Graduate School of Business, a member of the Board of Directors of the Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation, a member of the Investment Committee of the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, and Board Chairman of Green Spaces, a committee organized to rebuild 13 parks in Newark, NJ.

Lee received his MBA from Columbia Business School and his undergraduate degree from Hunter College.  He is a recipient of Roger Williams University’s Honorary Doctor of Finance; a recipient of Hunter College’s Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters; an inductee into Hunter College’s Hall of Fame; and a recipient of the 2003 American Jewish Committee (AJC) Wall Street Human Relations Award, the 2006 Seton Hall Humanitarian of the Year Award, the 2009 Boys & Girls Clubs of Newark Award for Caring, and the 2009 UJA-Federation of New York’s Wall Street and Financial Services Division Lifetime Achievement Award.  In 2013, Lee was inducted into Alpha Magazine’s Hedge Fund Hall of Fame and was honored by the AJC at their 50th anniversary with the Herbert H. Lehman Award for his professional achievements, philanthropic efforts, and longstanding support for AJC.  In 2014, Columbia Business School awarded Lee its Distinguished Leadership in Business Award, and Bloomberg Markets named him to its fourth annual “50 Most Influential” list (one of only ten money managers globally to be so honored, selected “based on what they’re doing now, rather than past achievements”).  He was inducted into the   Horatio Alger Association in April 2015. 

Lee and his wife, Toby, have two sons and three grandchildren.


Will Danoff

Portfolio Manager, Fidelity Investments

After earning an M.B.A. from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in 1986, Will Danoff joined Fidelity as an equity research analyst that same year.

He began following companies in the retail industry and soon assumed management of the Fidelity Select Retailing Portfolio. He later served as the portfolio assistant for the Fidelity Magellan Fund under Peter Lynch and then was appointed manager of Fidelity Contrafund in 1990. In 2003, he began managing the Fidelity Advisor New Insights Fund.

Will's investment philosophy is rooted in the belief that share prices of companies follow earnings and businesses that are growing their earnings the fastest tend to outperform relative to other firms. By utilizing Fidelity's extensive research capabilities and frequent interaction with company management teams, he seeks to identify firms that are "best of breed" and expected to potentially deliver the fastest earnings growth. He looks for businesses with growth catalysts, such as new products and acquisitions, as well as turnaround situations driven by management changes and recovering industry dynamics.


David Einhorn

President and Founder, Greenlight Capital, Inc.

David Einhorn is president of Greenlight Capital, Inc., which he co-founded in January 1996.  Greenlight Capital is a value-oriented investment advisor whose goal is to achieve high absolute rates of return while minimizing the risk of capital loss.  

Greenlight’s investment philosophy is to combine the analytical discipline of determining fair value with a practical understanding of markets.  The firm believes that an investment approach that emphasizes intrinsic value will achieve consistent absolute investment returns and safeguard capital regardless of market conditions.  

Prior to founding Greenlight Capital, Inc., David worked at Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette (DLJ) as an analyst in the Investment Banking Group.  After DLJ, Mr. Einhorn joined Siegler, Collery & Co., a buyout and investment management firm, as an investment analyst.  

David is Chairman of the Board of Greenlight Capital Re, Ltd. (NASDAQ:GLRE) and Chairman of the Board of Green Brick Partners, Inc. (NASDAQ:GRBK).  He is the author of Fooling Some of the People All of the Time: A Long Short Story, published in May 2008.    

David graduated summa cum laude with distinction in all subjects from Cornell University, where he earned a B.A. from the College of Arts and Sciences.  


William A. Fleckenstein

President, Fleckenstein Capital Inc.

William A. Fleckenstein is President of Fleckenstein Capital Inc., a money management firm that he founded in 1982. Since 1996, Mr. Fleckenstein has written daily market commentaries which can be found at www.fleckensteincapital.com. Mr. Fleckenstein is the author of Greenspan’s Bubbles: The Age of Ignorance at the Federal Reserve. Mr. Fleckenstein served as the lead director at Pan American Silver and Mongolia Growth Group LTD. He has also appeared on countless business and financial shows on the all the major US television networks.


Mario J. Gabelli

Chairman & CEO, Gabelli Funds

Mr. Gabelli is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Gabelli Funds. A 1965 summa cum laude graduate of Fordham University’s College of Business Administration, he also holds an M.B.A. from Columbia University Graduate School of Business, and honorary doctorates from Fordham University and Roger Williams University. Mr. Gabelli serves on the Boards of Boston College, Roger Williams University, Columbia University Graduate School of Business, the American- Italian Cancer Foundation, the  Foundation for Italian Art & Culture, and is a Trustee of the Winston Churchill Foundation of the United States and of the E.L. Wiengand Foundation. He was Morningstar’s Portfolio Manager of the Year in 1997 and was named Money Manager of the Year by Institutional Investor for 2011 and is a member of Barron’s All Star Century Team.


James Grant

Founder and Editor, Grant’s Interest Rate Observer

James Grant, financial journalist and historian, is the founder and editor of Grant’s Interest Rate Observer, a twice-monthly journal of the investment markets. His new book, The Forgotten Depression, 1921: the Crash that Cured Itself, a history of America’s last governmentally unmedicated business-cycle downturn, won the 2015 Hayek Prize of the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research.

Among his other books on finance and financial history are Bernard M. Baruch: The Adventures of a Wall Street Legend (Simon & Schuster, 1983), Money of the Mind (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1992), Minding Mr. Market (Farrar, Straus, 1993), The Trouble with Prosperity (Times Books, 1996), and Mr. Market Miscalculates (Axios Press, 2008). 

He is, in addition, the author of a pair of political biographies: John Adams: Party of One, a life of the second president of the United States (Farrar, Straus, 2005) and Mr. Speaker! The Life and Times of Thomas B. Reed, the Man Who Broke the Filibuster (Simon & Schuster, 2011). 

 Mr. Grant’s television appearances include “60 Minutes,” “The Charlie Rose Show,” “CBS Evening News,” and a 10-year stint on “Wall Street Week.” His journalism has appeared in a variety of periodicals, including the Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal and Foreign Affairs. He contributed an essay to the Sixth Edition of Graham and Dodd's Security Analysis (McGraw-Hill, 2009).  

Mr. Grant, a former Navy gunner's mate, is a Phi Beta Kappa alumnus of Indiana University. He earned a master's degree in international relations from Columbia  University and began his career in journalism in 1972, at the Baltimore Sun. He joined the staff of Barron’s in 1975 where he originated the “Current Yield” column. He is a trustee of the New York Historical Society. He and his wife, Patricia Kavanagh M.D., live in Brooklyn. They are the parents of four grown children.


Van R. Hoisington

Chief Investment Officer, Hoisington Management

Van Hoisington is the Chief Executive Officer of Hoisington Investment Management Company, a firm with over $5.4 billion in fixed income assets under management for insurance companies, endowments, pension plans and charitable organizations. The firm also manages the Wasatch-Hoisington U.S. Treasury Fund. Van started Hoisington Investment Management Company in 1980 after serving as Executive Vice President at Texas Commerce Bancshares in Houston. Previously, he was an economist with the United California Bank in Los Angeles. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Kansas in 1962 and his master's degree in business from Fort Hays Kansas University in 1970.

Van has been a guest speaker at the CFA Institute’s Annual and Fixed Income Conferences and is published in the CFA Institute Conference Proceedings Quarterly. He was featured in the August 7, 2010 edition of the Wall Street Journal, where it was noted that the firm had outperformed the bond and stock market indices for the past twenty years. He was also highlighted in the December 2011, July 2005 and April 2000 issues of Barron’s as an outstanding bond and mutual fund manager, and recognized in the July 2007 and September 2004 issues of Forbes. He has been recognized in various other publications including Institutional InvestorSmart Money, the New York Post, Pensions & Investments, and Fortune magazine, as well as the online publications CNNMoney.com and Forbes.com. He appeared as a special guest on Louis Rukeyser’s Wall Street Week, and is a frequent speaker at Grant’s Interest Rate Observer conferences.


T. Boone Pickens

Founder and CEO, BP Capital

T. Boone Pickens is one of the nation’s most successful businessmen, first building one of the nation’s largest independent oil companies, Mesa Petroleum, and later reinventing himself in his 70s as one of the most successful investment fund operators with BP Capital. In July 2008, Boone launched the Pickens Plan (www.PickensPlan.com), a grass-roots campaign aimed at reducing this country’s crippling addiction to OPEC oil. 

Boone’s 2008 book, The First Billion is the Hardest, also detailed what this country must do to win back its energy independence. He is also aggressively pursuing a wide range of other business interests, from alternative energy options to Clean Energy, a clean transportation fuels company he founded and took public in May 2008 (the eighth entity he has helped go public in his career). 

CNBC has dubbed him “Oracle of Oil” for his uncanny knack of predicting oil price movements. At a time in life when many businessmen are concentrating on the golf course and ship cruises, he remains a dynamic force in his industry, as evidence by his fellow Dallas chief executives selecting him as DCEO magazine’s 2013 CEO of the Year. His many professional honors include membership in the Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans, the Texas Business Hall of Fame, and the Oklahoma Hall of Fame. In 1998, the Oil & Gas Investor listed him as one of the “100 Most Influential People of the Petroleum Century.” During the span of his career, Pickens has given away more than $1 billion to philanthropic causes. He is among the most generous university benefactors of all time, having contributed more than $500 million to his alma mater, Oklahoma State University, divided evenly between academics and athletics.

If you want to follow Boone Pickens on Twitter, you can do so @boonepickens.


Michael F. Price

President, The Price Family Foundation; Managing Member, MFP Investors LLC

Michael F. Price earned his bachelor’s degree in 1973 from the University of Oklahoma. In 1999 the University of Oklahoma honored him with a Doctor of Humane Letters.

Michael F. Price was Chairman of the Board of Franklin Mutual Advisers and Franklin Mutual Series Fund. He had been associated with both entities and their predecessor organizations since 1975. At that time the adviser was known as Heine Securities Corp. and the fund was Mutual Shares Fund. Michael was Vice President of the fund from 1975 until 1986. From 1986 until November 1, 1998 he was CEO, President and Chairman of the Board of the adviser and the fund, which came to be known as Mutual Series Fund.

Presently, Michael is the President of The Price Family Foundation, Inc.; Managing Member of MFP Investors LLC; and Managing Partner of MFP Partners, L.P. He also serves as a Director of Liquidnet Holdings, an Investment Advisory Council Member to the Florida State Board of Administration and on Boards for The Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Jazz at Lincoln Center and Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics.


Gretchen Morgenson (Moderator)

Assistant Business and Financial Editor, The New York Times

Ms. Morgenson has been Assistant Business and Financial Editor and a Columnist at The New York Times since 1998. She covers the world financial markets and won the Pulitzer Prize in 2002 for her “trenchant and incisive” coverage of Wall Street. In 2009, Ms. Morgenson won a Gerald Loeb Award in the “Beat Writing” category in her coverage of Wall Street. This followed her Gerald Loeb Award for excellence in financial commentary in 2002 and the American University School of Communication’s Annual Journalism Award for excellence in personal finance reporting in 2000.

Ms. Morgenson began her career at Vogue magazine as an Assistant Editor in 1976. By the time she left the magazine in 1981, she was a writer and financial columnist. She has filled the roles of Assistant Managing Editor and Investigative Business Writer and Editor at Forbes magazine, Press Secretary for the Forbes for President Campaign, Executive Editor for Worth magazine, Staff Writer at Money magazine, and Stockbroker for Dean Witter Reynolds in New York from 1981 to 1984. Ms. Morgenson received a B.A. degree in English and History from Saint Olaf College. She is co-author of The New York Times bestseller Reckless Endangerment, published by Times Books in May 2011.