NFMA Advanced Seminar on High Yield Bonds


Blake Anderson

Senior Managing Director, Head of Strategy and Research at Mesirow Financial

Blake Anderson is a senior managing director and head of strategy and research of Capital Markets at Mesirow Financial. He focuses on municipal securities and high-yield, tax-exempt and taxable bond research for institutional clients. Blake has more than 30 years of investment experience. Prior to joining Mesirow Financial in 2011, Blake was a partner at Social Sphere Strategies, managing partner at Anderson Tuttle Properties and a managing director at Putnam Investments. At Putnam, Blake was director of the High Yield Team, senior portfolio manager and director of tax exempt research while serving on the Executive, Risk Management and New Product committees. Prior to Putnam, Blake was a consultant at Coopers & Lybrand Actuarial and Benefits Consulting Group. Prior to Coopers, Blake was a senior underwriter at Cigna Corp. Blake earned a BA from McGill University. Blake played rugby for the McGill University team.

John Brancaglione


John Brancaglione is a Vice President at PGAV, a 150-member firm of architects and planners based in St. Louis with offices in Kansas City. In 2008, John completed a 16-year term as Adjunct Professor of Urban Planning in the Department of Civil Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis. He is member of the Missouri Economic Development Financing Association (past President and Treasurer) and the Illinois Tax Increment Financing Association (past treasurer) and is a member of the national Council of Development Finance Agencies. Mr. Brancaglione's experience represents a broad scope of planning expertise involving a wide array of urban planning and development projects. He has provided urban planning consulting services to more nearly 500 communities, state and Federal agencies, foreign governments, and private industry throughout his 48-year career. He has conducted nearly 200 planning assignments using tax increment financing in Missouri and 22 other states. In Missouri and Illinois he has been the consulting planner for several projects that have established landmark case law involving zoning and redevelopment matters for municipal clients. The majority of John’s career has been in consulting; however, he spent nearly four years as Director of Development for the City of St. Louis' combined economic development organizations.

Natalie Cohen

Managing Director at Wells Fargo Securities, Llc

Natalie Cohen is managing director and Head of Municipal Research, a coverage area that launched in late 2010 as part of the Global Economics and Research group. Natalie was previously president of National Municipal Research, Inc., an independent consulting company focused on state and local fiscal condition. Prior to National Municipal Research, she was managing director at Financial Security Assurance, a bond insurance company. Natalie has also held positions in high-yield municipal bond insurance at Enhance Financial Service Group, now Radian, and American Capital Access. She was also a vice president at Moody’s Investors Service and a supervising analyst at the New York City Office of Management and Budget. Natalie is well known for her studies and articles about municipal credit risk and bond defaults. Natalie has been voted first team analyst by Smith’s Research and Gradings, since 2012. She is a member of the Municipal Analysts Group of New York, has served on the board of the National Federation of Municipal Analysts, is a member of the budget committee of the Government Finance Officers Association, in the National League of Cities' Retirement Advisory Committee and has been a representative to the Governmental Accounting Standards Advisory Committee. Natalie holds a master’s degree in public administration from New York University’s Wagner School of Public Service and a BA from Hampshire College.

Jerome Cox

Director at Sustainable Capital Advisors

Brian Crumbaker

Shareholder at Hopping Green & Sams, P.A.

Lesley Deutch

Principal at John Burns Real Estate Consulting

Lesley Deutch is a Principal based in Florida for John Burns Real Estate Consulting. She has more than 20 years of experience consulting with executives in the finance and real estate industries throughout US. She works directly with real estate Executives across a wide spectrum of industries including for-sale housing, apartments, high-rise development, urban projects, single-family rental, building products and commercial developments. In addition to numerous speaking engagements, Lesley completes over 75 consulting assignments in the state of Florida each year. Previously, she was Vice President in the Global Real Estate division of Deutsche Bank and RREEF in New York, and started her professional career at Lehman Brothers in the Public Finance Group. Ms. Deutch holds a B.S. from the Wharton School with a concentration in Public Finance and a B.A. in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania.

Renee Dougherty

Managing Director at Charles Schwab Investment Management

Renee Dougherty is a Managing Director and Senior Analyst for Charles Schwab Investment Management, Inc. (CSIM) in the municipal research fixed income group. Ms. Dougherty provides research and analytical support for CSIM’s municipal bond and money market funds. She covers a broad array of municipal sectors, including state and local governments, school districts, public power, and transportation. Prior to joining CSIM in 2005, she was a Senior Municipal Analyst and Vice President at Banc of America Capital Management and its predecessors for seven years. In addition, she was a municipal analyst at Greenwich Partners LLC for four years. Ms. Dougherty earned a Master’s in Public Policy from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of California, San Diego. She has served on the Board of Governors and Executive Committee of the National Federation of Municipal Analysts and is a past Chairwoman of the California Society of Municipal Analysts. She is also a CFA® charterholder.

Chad Farrington

Portfolio Manager/Head of Municipal Bond Research at Columbia Threadneedle

Chad Farrington is the head of municipal bond research and a senior municipal fixed income portfolio manager for Columbia Threadneedle Investments.* Mr. Farrington manages the high-yield municipal, strategic municipal income and U.S. social bond strategies. He also serves as a senior credit analyst, focused on senior living, multi-family housing and other traditional high-yield products. He joined one of the Columbia Threadneedle Investments legacy firms in 2003. Previously, Mr. Farrington spent five years at Fitch Ratings as a director in the firm’s healthcare and tax-backed groups. He has been a member of the investment community since 1998. Mr. Farrington received a B.S. in business finance and a minor in economics from Montana State University. He holds the Chartered Financial Analyst® designation. In addition, he is a member of the Boston Security Analysts Society, Boston Municipal Analyst Forum and the National Federation of Municipal Analysts.

Matthew Hilliard

VP - Fixed Income at Sit Investment Associates

Matthew Hilliard is a Vice President with Sit Fixed Income where he has over 10 years of industry experience. Matt is primarily responsible for municipal credit research, while also backing up Sit’s municipal bond trading desk. Matt is Sit Fixed Income’s lead analyst for the senior living and transportation sectors. Matt’s other credit sector experience includes: health care, land development, multi-family housing, and utilities. Before joining Sit Fixed Income, Matt spent time as both a valuations analyst and briefly as a corporate trust analyst. Matt is the current President of the Minnesota Society of Municipal Analysts. He earned an M.B.A., with a concentration in Finance from the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota, and he holds B.A. degrees in both Finance and Economics from the University of Wisconsin – La Crosse. Matt is also a CFA Charter holder.

William Huck

CEO at Common Bond Capital Partners, LLC

Rex Jensen

President & CEO at Schroeder Manatee Ranch

Rex Jensen was promoted to President of Schroeder-Manatee Ranch (SMR) in August 2002 and was chosen to become Chief Executive Officer in February 2005. In that capacity, Jensen oversees all the businesses of SMR, including agriculture, aggregate mining and real estate development on its 30,000-acre land holding in Manatee and Sarasota counties. The company’s award-winning development, Lakewood Ranch, a fully integrated, master-planned community is ranked in the top 10 fastest selling in the United States from 2011 through 2017. Jensen is a pro-active leader known for setting the entitlement, green building, transactional and financial framework for Lakewood Ranch as well as a number of public/private partnerships with school boards, local, regional, and state governments and innovative business approaches to difficult private and public sector issues. Jensen holds a Bachelor’s Degree in History, Economics, and Political Science from Michigan State University (with high honors, 1976) and received a degree of Juris Doctor from the University of Michigan (with honors, 1979).

Dean Lewallen

SVP, Municipal High-Yield Credit Analyst at AllianceBernstein Investments

Jessica Matsumori

Senior Director at Standard & Poor's

Jessica, a Senior Director with Public Finance Ratings at S&P Global Rating’s San Francisco office and Sector Leader for the Education group, joined S&P Global Ratings in 2004. Jessica is the group’s sector expert, providing market leading research and thought leadership on over 1,000 ratings in the not-for-profit higher education, 501c3, and charter school sectors and overseeing the training and development of the nearly 20 analysts assigned to them. Additionally, Jessica’s duties include leadership of the San Francisco office, currently the third largest location for S&P Global Ratings. Jessica follows a portfolio of high profile credits around the country, has spoken at numerous regional and national conferences, and has authored several commentary pieces for the group. Previously, Jessica worked for five years with the Salt Lake Organizing Committee for the 2002 Olympic Winter Games conducting financial analysis for the arts & culture, education, and information services departments and as the finance manager for the Olympic Torch Relay. Jessica has been named to the Smith’s Research Municipal All-Stars second team for Higher Education and Charter Schools. She received her masters of business administration from Yale University and holds a bachelor’s degree in Accounting from the University of Utah. She is a member of the California Society of Municipal Analysts (CSMA) and the National Federation of Municipal Analysts (NFMA).

Gail Miller

Principal at CliftonLarsonAllen LLP

Gail Miller is a Principal with CliftonLarsonAllen with more than 23 years of public accounting and consulting experience devoted almost exclusively to the health care industry. Gail specializes in conducting financial and market feasibility studies, strategic capital planning, and other consulting services for senior living and health care providers. Her background also includes audit, tax, and reimbursement consulting for clients in the health care industry. Gail has extensive experience leading and conducting financial feasibility studies, market research and financial modeling for a variety of senior housing and health care organizations. Gail and her team utilizes interactive financial models and planning tools to assist organizations with understanding the financial implications of their strategic opportunities and has successfully assisted clients throughout the planning and financing of their projects. Gail is a certified public accountant and a member of the Minnesota Society of Certified Public Accountants and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. Gail graduated Summa Cum Laude from Minnesota State University, Mankato, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting. Gail has served on a variety of committees for LeadingAge Minnesota, Care Providers of Minnesota and the Minnesota Home Care Association. She has spoken before a number of senior housing and health care organizations including LeadingAge Minnesota, LeadingAge Wisconsin, Care Providers of Minnesota, the Arizona Health Care Association, Washington Health Care Association, and Minnesota Home Care Association. From 2012 through 2015, Gail served as a board member and treasurer (2014-2015) of Dakota Woodlands, a Minnesota based non-profit organization which provides shelter and supportive services to homeless women and their families.

Ron Mintz

Principal at The Vanguard Group

Ronald L. Mintz, CFA, is a principal and senior municipal investment analyst in Vanguard Fixed Income Group and the co-leader for the Municipal High Yield Team. He is responsible for credit and investment analytics for a variety of high-yield sectors, including senior living, project financings, and real estate-based deals. On the general government side, his brief also includes the State of California. His expertise includes the bond and money market sectors. Ron has worked in the municipal bond industry for more than 30 years, starting as an associate at an investment banking firm in New York City. He served as research director for Stone & Youngberg LLC, responsible for the credit analysis of the firm’s land secured and other non-rated transactions. Before joining Vanguard in 2002, he was a member of Putnam Investments’ research staff, covering real estate, higher education, general government, and other sectors. Ron is vice president of the Philadelphia Area Municipal Analyst Society and a member of the Philadelphia CFA Society. He has been an officer of the California Society of Municipal Analysts and the National Federation of Municipal Analysts (NFMA), and a member of the Boston Municipal Analysts Forum, the Municipal Analysts Group of New York, the Security Analysts of San Francisco, and the Boston Security Analysts Society. He co-chaired the NFMA’s Disclosure Guidelines Committee for Land Secured Finance and sat on the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MSRB)’s task force on land secured disclosure. He has spoken on numerous panels about disclosure and other matters relevant to the analysis of municipal securities. A CFA® charterholder, Ron earned a B.A. in political science from the University of California, Los Angeles, and an M.B.A. in finance from the New York University Stern School of Business.

James Murphy

VP at T Rowe Price Associates

Jim Murphy is a portfolio manager in the Fixed Income Division at T. Rowe Price. Mr. Murphy has lead portfolio management responsibilities for the US Municipal High Yield and Intermediate High Yield Bond Strategies and is an Investment Advisory Committee member for the Summit Municipal Funds, Inc. He is a vice president of T. Rowe Price Group, Inc., and T. Rowe Price Associates, Inc. Mr. Murphy has 24 years of investment experience, 17 of which have been with T. Rowe Price. Prior to joining the firm in 2000, he worked as a portfolio manager for Prudential Investments. Mr. Murphy received a B.S. in finance from the University of Delaware and an M.B.A. in finance from Seton Hall University. He also has earned the Chartered Financial Analyst designation. Mr. Murphy also is a trustee for the T. Rowe Price Foundation and is a trustee for Severn School.

Joseph Narens

Director, HY Trading at Citi

Mr. Narens is a Managing Director in the Los Angeles office, Co-Head of Municipal Credit Analytics, and has high yield municipal trading responsibilities across a variety of sectors including tobacco, Puerto Rico, and California special tax bonds. Prior to joining Citi in 2013, he spent four years at Pacific Investment Management Company (PIMCO) in various municipal credit research and trading roles. Mr. Narens has a BS and MS from Stanford University and an MBA from Harvard Business School. He is also a CFA charterholder.

Triet Nguyen

Managing Director at NewOak Capital LLC

Triet Nguyen is a 37 year veteran of the fixed-income markets and a high yield/distressed municipal bond expert. He is currently a Managing Director/ Head of Public Finance for NewOak Capital LLC, a leading credit and risk advisory firm. Triet is the author of “Investing In The High Yield Municipal Market”, published in July 2012 by John Wiley/Bloomberg Press. Before joining NewOak, Triet was the founder and managing partner of Axios Advisors LLC, an independent municipal research and investment advisory boutique. Prior to Axios, Mr. Nguyen was a Senior Vice President at B.C. Ziegler, where he traded tax-exempt high yield and taxable municipal bonds (including Build America Bonds). From January 2004 to January 2008, he was a Managing Director of Saybrook Capital, LLC, managing one of the first ever municipal hedge funds dedicated to a credit strategy. Prior to 2000, he was a Vice President/Portfolio Manager of the John Hancock Funds and a Senior Portfolio Manager of the Putnam Funds. Triet received a B.A. in Economics and an M.B.A. in Finance and Accounting from the University of Chicago.

Richard Page

CIO at Charter Schools USA

As Chief Impact Officer Mr. Page is responsible for a broad array of external facing functions for Charter Schools USA including marketing/communications, government affairs, board relations, student enrollment, business development, and new school launch. He has held several other Senior Executive positions with CSUSA since joining the company in 2006. Prior to joining CSUSA, Mr. Page was the Chief Operating Officer for a land development/resort operations company in the Florida panhandle. He also spent many years working for BearingPoint (formerly KPMG Consulting) as a manager in the State of Florida government practice with lead responsibility for Health and Human Services. Mr. Page started his career as an employee with the State of Florida performing various roles primarily related to health care reform. Mr. Page holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Economics from Florida State University and is a Certified Public Account.

Chris Pappas

Director at Fitch Ratings

Christopher G. Pappas is a Director in the Corporate Ratings group at Fitch Ratings focusing on real estate and REITs. At Fitch, Chris’ responsibilities include providing analysis for transactions, managing and monitoring existing ratings and publishing credit updates and industry reports. Previously, Chris was a Managing Consultant at Global Realty Consulting LLC where he advised investors on real estate securities and private equity (direct) investments. Prior to GRC, Mr. Pappas was a Portfolio Manager for the Athos Real Estate Securities Fund LP ("Athos"), a long / short real estate securities hedge fund sponsored by The Praedium Group and Case de Depot. At Athos, he was responsible for portfolio allocations, investment decisions, analysis, marketing, operations and trading. Prior to Athos, he was the Portfolio Manager for Deutsche Bank's REIT fund. Earlier in his career, Mr. Pappas was an Investment Banker at UBS Securities (formerly PaineWebber Inc.) and JPMorgan (formerly Chase Securities), focused on capital raising, ratings agency advisory and M&A transactions for REIT clients. In addition, Chris worked at the FDIC as a Bank Liquidation Specialist, managing the workout and sale of commercial real estate loans and properties. Mr. Pappas has a BS from Lehigh University and an MBA from Columbia University and completed JPMorgan Chase's (formerly Chase Manhattan) global MBA training program. He also completed the FDIC’s Bank Liquidation Specialist training program. Chris' honors and awards include the Athos Fund being nominated "Real Estate Fund of the Year" in 2004 by Institutional Investor magazine's real estate newsletter. He was also awarded an "FDIC Special Achievement Award" for job performance.

Lisa Grover, Ph.D.

Senior Director, State Advocacy at National Alliance fro Public Charter Schools

William Rhodes

Partner at Ballard Spahr LLP

Bill Rhodes is a Partner in the Public Finance Department at Ballard Spahr LLP, and Practice Leader of the firm’s Municipal Recovery Initiative. He represents clients in the financing of public infrastructure, transportation, economic development, and other facilities for governments, nonprofits and utilities, with an emphasis on distressed municipalities and the offering of high-yield municipal securities. Mr. Rhodes also advises clients in the evolving landscape of municipal securities regulation and enforcement, including regulatory compliance, primary and secondary market disclosure, and enforcement actions. Mr. Rhodes is a graduate of The Dickinson School of Law of The Pennsylvania State University, Swarthmore College and Phillips Exeter Academy.

Julio Rhymer

Executive Director at Virgin Islands Water and Power Authority

Ryan Rosberg

Vice President - Sr. Research Analyst at Nuveen Asset Management

Mr. Rosberg provides fundamental credit analysis and trade recommendations for both the tax-exempt and taxable trading desks, primarily for high yield strategies. He specializes in the land-secured, transportation, and project finance sectors on the municipal side of the business. Within the corporate-backed market, he focuses on the transportation, homebuilding, and gaming industries. Ryan was selected a 1st Team All-Star Analyst during 2011 and from 2015-2017 by Smith’s Research & Gradings. Before joining Nuveen, Ryan worked at McDonnell Investment Management as a fixed income analyst covering both municipal and corporate bonds. Ryan earned his B.B.A. in finance from the University of Iowa. He also holds the Chartered Financial Analyst designation and is a member of the CFA Institute and CFA Society of Chicago.

Michael Roye

Director at Consultant

P Miyoko Sato

Member at Mintz Levin

Rich Scanlon

Managing Director at Ziegler

Richard Scanlon joined the senior living team at Ziegler in November 1993. He opened the firm’s office in St. Petersburg, Florida, to serve the investment banking needs of not-for-profit senior living providers located in the southern United States. Rich is a Managing Director for Ziegler and he is one of the longest tenured bankers in the senior living sector. Rich has 27 years of investment banking experience in the senior living industry. He has been responsible for the structuring of more than $4.8 billion in healthcare bond issues for not-for-profit senior living providers, ranging from small campus expansions to large start-up communities utilizing a complex plan of finance. With the continued evolution, growth, and maturation of the senior living space, Rich has routinely and actively been involved as a strategic partner to both single-site providers and multi-facility providers. He has extensive experience working with communities looking to competitively reposition themselves, as well as working with those expanding into new markets. Rich is a frequent speaker on senior living finance and strategy issues on both the state and national levels. He has been appointed to multiple terms for the Governor’s Continuing Care Advisory Council in Florida. In 2008, Rich received the Herbert Shore Leadership Award from the Coalition for Leadership in Aging Services (CLAS formerly RHP) and was a member of the CLAS Advisory Board for eight years.

Jon Schotz

Co-Portfolio Manager, Co-Managing Partner at Saybrook Fund Advisors, LLC

Larry Smith

CFO at Lifespace Communities, Inc.

Larry Smith, CPA, joined Lifespace Communities, Inc. in December 2002. He previously served as vice president and controller of Progress Energy in Raleigh, North Carolina, and was vice president of finance for Progress Ventures, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Progress Energy. He also served as vice president and controller of MidAmerican Energy Company in Des Moines from 1985 through 1999, and was a certified public accountant and auditor with Kealy Hamilton & Company and Arthur Andersen & Company from 1978 through 1985. Larry is a member of Financial Executives International, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Iowa Society of Certified Public Accountants. He has served on various professional and community boards throughout his career. Larry has a Bachelor of Science/Bachelor of Arts degree from Creighton University and a master’s in business administration from the University of South Dakota, and he is a non-practicing certified public accountant.

John Snider

Managing Director at RBC Capital Markets

Mr. Snider joined RBC in 1989 and since that time has been involved with over $15 billion in municipal bond financings for a variety of cities, counties, special districts, charter schools, school districts, universities and state agencies. While Mr. Snider has a wide variety of experience, his primary area of expertise has been financing for K-12 education borrowers, including charter schools. Mr. Snider heads RBC Capital Markets’ Charter School Finance Group. Since 2000, RBC Capital Markets has financed in excess of 130 charter school projects for over 80 charter school organizations raising over $2.5 billion for acquisition, construction, renovation, leasehold improvements, refinancing and related costs for charter schools. RBC Capital Markets’ Charter School Finance Group has financed or is financing charter schools in multiple states, including Arizona, California, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, New Jersey, North Carolina and Texas. Mr. Snider has served as RBC's lead banker for Aspire Public Schools, BASIS Schools, Coastal & Classical Academies, KIPP Houston, Phoenix Collegiate Academy, Reid Traditional Schools and Green Street Academy, among others. Outside of the K-12 education area, high profile bond financings lead and completed by Mr. Snider include $350 million of research facilities for the University of Arizona and $450 million for the Arizona Sports and Tourism Authority’s share of the home stadium of the NFL Arizona Cardinals and MLB spring training facilities. Mr. Snider received his Bachelor’s of Science degree in finance from Arizona State University, graduating summa cum laude, and his Masters in Business Administration from the University of Chicago. Mr. Snider’s community involvement includes sitting on several boards, including formerly serving as Chair of the Phoenix Boys Choir Association and as President of Arizona School for the Arts, an excelling Arizona charter school (Mr. Snider continues as a ASA board member & Finance Committee Chair). Mr. Snider currently serves on the board of the Arizona Charter School Association as its Finance Chair.

Michael Taylor

VP & Municipal Research Analyst at National Life Group

Christopher Tucker

Managing Director at PNC Capital Markets

Mr. Tucker is a managing director in PNCCM’s Healthcare Investment Banking group in Philadelphia and has over 20 years of experience in the public finance sector. Mr. Tucker is focused exclusively on healthcare borrowers, primarily in PNCCM’s eastern footprint, and is responsible for both business development and the execution of financings across this region. Mr. Tucker has been involved in numerous financings over his career, including transactions for major healthcare systems and academic medical centers, community hospitals, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, continuing care retirement communities, and other human service providers. Mr. Tucker holds a B.A. from Monmouth University and an M.P.A. from Seton Hall University. In addition, he holds the Series 7, 63, 53 and 79 FINRA Securities licenses.

Andrew Turnbull

Managing Director at Houlihan Lokey