Risk Spring 2023 Advisory Board
2023 Advisory Board
Chief risk officer
Nick Silitch is senior vice president, chief risk officer of Prudential Financial, Inc. In this role, Silitch oversees Prudential’s risk management infrastructure and risk profile across all business lines and risk types. Under his direction, his team develops models, metrics, frameworks and governance to manage risk, and works with internal corporate partners and business groups to identify, assess and prioritize risk across the company. He is chairman of the organization’s Enterprise Risk Committee that evaluates current and emerging risks relevant to the company, and is a member of Prudential’s Senior Management Council.
Silitch also works with external stakeholder groups to forward industry interests. He is head of the International Affairs Committee for the North American Chief Risk Officers’ Council, and is a member of the Advisory Council for the International Association of Credit Portfolio Managers.
Silitch joined Prudential in 2010 as chief credit officer and head of investment risk management, overseeing Prudential’s general account and other proprietary investment risks globally, as well as maintaining and approving Delegations of Authority and Investment Policy Statements.
Prior to joining Prudential, Silitch held the position of chief risk officer of the Alternative Investment Services, Broker Dealer Services and Pershing businesses within Bank of New York Mellon. He also served on the Pershing Executive Committee.
Silitch joined Bank of New York Mellon in 1983 as a credit trainee. Throughout his career at the bank, he held senior positions in client management, investor relations, risk management, loan restructuring, credit portfolio management and Basel compliance.
He received a bachelor’s degree in economics from Colby College.
Chief risk officer
Canada Pension Plan Investment Board
Kristen has 25+ years of experience in risk management and analytics at large buy- and sell-side firms. Currently serving as CRO for The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board. Kristen also served as CRO of Natixis Investment Managers from 2020-2022.
Prior to Natixis, she was the Chief Operating Officer of BlackRock's Risk and Quantitative Analysis (RQA) Group from 2012-2020. Kristen reported to the firm's Chief Risk Officer (CRO) and is a member of RQA's EXCO. Her responsibilities included ensuring RQA effectively manages market, counterparty credit, liquidity and operational risk on behalf of BlackRock and fiduciary clients. She was also responsible for RQA’s strategic technology, analytics and reporting initiatives partnering with BlackRock’s financial modeling and application development teams. Kristen has been a member of the Commodities Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) Market Risk Advisory Committee since 2014 and worked closely with BlackRock’s Vice Chairman / Head of Government Relations on risk-related regulatory issues.
Kristen previously worked for BlackRock’s CRO when he was co-heading BlackRock Solutions and focused on developing analytics for fixed income bonds and derivatives as well as portfolio risk analytics, such as VaR and stress testing. She also worked with BlackRock’s Institutional Client Business and Sovereign Wealth clients on risk measurement for AUM managed by BlackRock.
Kristen has also held senior positions in risk management at Goldman Sachs, PIMCO and Barclays Capital. Many of her risk roles have also involved addressing regulatory issues pertaining to risk management, including managing the Federal Reserve's initial stress testing exercise for Goldman Sachs during 2009. She has also done significant work developing analytics for market, credit and liquidity risk across cash and derivatives markets.
Kristen started her career in Supervision and Regulation at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston and holds a MBA from Babson College and an undergraduate degree in accounting from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
Managing director, applied portfolio analysis
Ronald Ratcliffe, PhD, is a Managing Director in BlackRock’s Applied Portfolio Analysis practice area within the Analytics & Quantitative Solutions (AQS) group. He focuses on multi-asset portfolio risk, scenario analysis, and portfolio construction.
Dr. Ratcliffe's service with BlackRock dates back to 2004, including his years with Barclays Global Investors (BGI), which merged with BlackRock in 2009. Prior to joining AQS, he led the Market-Driven Scenarios (MDS) initiative as Head of Cross-Platform Scenario Analysis in the Risk & Quantitative Analysis (RQA) group. Previously in RQA, he was Head of Multi-Asset Investment Risk for the Americas West region. In the Portfolio Management Group (PMG), he was a portfolio manager and developed systematic macro trading strategies. Prior to joining BGI, Dr. Ratcliffe was a senior manager at KPMG in corporate valuation and international transfer pricing. Previously, he was the chief economist for Latin America at SG Cowen Securities, a subsidiary of Societe Generale. Before that he was with Bankers Trust Company (now part of Deutsche Bank) where he carried out country risk analysis.
Dr. Ratcliffe earned BA degrees in economics and in political science, with distinction and with departmental honors in economics, from Stanford University. He received a PhD in economics from the University of Pennsylvania.
Chief risk officer
Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan
Saskia Goedhart joined HOOPP in 2020 as Senior Vice President & Chief Risk Officer, and she is responsible for the evolution and ongoing enhancement of the risk management function for the organization. She is accountable for continuing to strengthen HOOPP’s risk systems, practices and monitoring to meet current and future demands.
Saskia has more than 20 years of experience in senior risk positions. She has extensive expertise in designing and implementing value-add risk management frameworks and maintaining risk-aware cultures in financial organizations around the world.
Most recently she served as Chief Risk Officer for IMCO (Investment Management Corporation of Ontario), an independent long-term investor for Ontario's public sector. Prior to that Saskia was the Chief Risk Officer of AMP Ltd., a Sydney, Australia based financial institution with a broad range of business lines.
Saskia holds a Bachelor’s degree in Public Administration with a focus on financial management, and a Master’s in Accountancy from Erasmus University Rotterdam in The Netherlands.
Chief investment officer
Rothesay Asset Management
Rob Allard is the Chief Investment Officer and Head of Rothesay Asset Management in North America. With over 20 years of experience in structured finance, Rob joined Rothesay Asset Management in 2018 to build and run the investment portfolio in North America. Prior to his current roles, Rob was the founding partner and CEO of Firebreak Capital, as well as Managing Director, Head of Structured Product Sales at Goldman Sachs and Deutsche Bank. He is currently studying part-time at Harvard to obtain his Masters in Sustainability and he currently holds a graduate Certificate from Harvard in Corporate Sustainability and Innovation and a Certificate from Harvard Business School in Sustainable Business Strategy.
Managing director and CRO
SMBC Capital Markets & SMBC Nikko America
Ash Majid is Managing Director and Chief Risk Officer for SMBC Capital Markets, Inc. & SMBC Nikko Securities America, Inc. wholly owned subsidiaries of SMBC Americas Holdings, Inc. In his current role he oversees teams responsible for managing the risk from the two subsidiaries within the broader America’s Division risk management team. Prior to joining SMBC Capital Markets, Ash worked at Ernst and Young, LLP within their Quantitative Advisory Services and SunTrust Banks, Inc. with oversight of their derivatives trading desks' market risk. Ash holds a Doctorate degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering and a Master's degree in Quantitative and Computational Finance from Georgia Institute of Technology. Additionally, Ash holds FINRA Series 7 & 24 licenses.
Global Financial Firms
Chris Callies has partnered with senior officers of major financial institutions to address growing complexity in the nature of financial risk and its propagation across geographic, asset class, market structure, and operational boundaries. After initially working with institutional asset managers, commercial and investment banks, and multi-family offices through the financial crisis that began in 2007–08, her professional domain later expanded to alternatives managers, insurance firms, non-bank lenders and regulators. Callies has advanced through a series of senior roles at Credit Suisse, Merrill Lynch and Bessemer Trust, including chief investment strategist, chief strategist, head of market risk strategy, and acting chief investment officer, with oversight of more than $40 billion in traditional and alternative assets. She is a dedicated advocate for fully integrated, flexible, proactive risk analytics as a vital tool for effective capital planning, product development and sustainable returns. Callies holds a bachelors degree from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, with a sub-specialty in advanced applied mathematics.
Managing director, model risk management
Royal Bank of Canada
As Managing Director in Enterprise Model Risk Management (EMRM), Jing Zou is responsible for validating models in Securitized Products, Pre-Provision Net Revenue, Retail Credit models, and interest rate derivatives models. She also developed Comprehensive Capital Analysis and Review (CCAR) model fragility analysis, which identifies the impact of model uncertainty on capital ratios. She is an invited speaker for many industry model risk management training courses.
Jing joined RBC in 2014 as a Director in local model risk manager, where she was responsible of engaging the business about model risks. Later on, she was promoted to Senior Director and then Managing Director and has expanded the scope to cover the validation of 40% of CCAR models. Prior to joining RBC, Jing worked at Goldman Sachs, Wells Fargo, and Fannie Mae in various quantitative analytics roles covering front office quant, market risk, and model risk areas.
Jing has a Ph.D. in Applied and Computational Mathematics from Princeton University and a B.S. and M.S. in Computational Mathematics in Xi’an Jiaotong University.
Senior risk officer
Head of sustainable investing, equities
Mr. Ruskin joined PineBridge Investments in 2017 and is a Senior Research Analyst covering Global Cyclical stocks for the Global Focus Equity team, and is also the Head of Sustainable Investing for Equities, ensuring that the Equities team is at the forefront of integrating ESG into their investment strategies, including how they engage and assess companies. Mr. Ruskin is also a member of PineBridge’s ESG Investment Committee. He has 23 years of experience in equity investing and corporate strategy consulting, and has worked in a number of leading organizations in equity research and in portfolio management. Mr. Ruskin began his career at Stern Stewart (EVA), then was a manager in strategic planning at American Express before moving to Putnam Investments as a Vice President in Global Equities and then as a Partner and Co-Portfolio Manager with Temujin Fund Management. Before joining PineBridge, he was a PM/Senior Analyst at Acclivity Capital Management, an asset management venture which he co-founded. Mr. Ruskin received his BA from Princeton University and his MBA from Wharton. He is a member of the CFA Institute.
Head of multi-asset investment risk
Venky Venkatesh is the Head of Multi-Asset Investment Risk at the Vanguard Group. Venky has been with Vanguard since 2018 and is responsible for overseeing the risk governance for the flagship Target Retirement Fund suite (target date funds) at Vanguard. Additionally, Venky’s team is responsible for overseeing both liquidity and derivatives risk for Vanguard’s 40-Act funds.
Venky has more than 15 years’ experience in Investment Risk Management. Prior to joining Vanguard, Venky was Vice President at Oppenheimerfunds specializing in risk management of fixed income domestic, and municipal funds.
Venky has a master’s degree in computer science from University of Missouri and an MBA from NYU Stern. He is also a CFA Charterholder.
Kris Devasabai is the New York-based editor-in-chief of Risk.net. Previously, he was bureau chief and US editor of Risk magazine. He manages the editorial team. Prior to joining Risk, Kris covered hedge funds, asset management, cross-border investing and law for several publications.
Kris holds a bachelor’s degree in law and government from the University of Manchester, and he completed his legal training at the Inns of Court School of Law in London. He was called to the bar of England and Wales in 2003.
Executive Vice President
Steve Boras is the Head of Model Risk Management & Validation at Citizens Bank in Boston, focused on managing the model risk of the bank via validation of models, performance management and monitoring of outcomes, and serving as a sounding board for new and emerging modeling techniques and their respective appropriateness. Since joining Citizens in 2015, Steve has led several risk analytics functions, most recently heading the Risk Architecture Center of Excellence (covering loss forecasting model development for CCAR/DFAST and CECL, and PD, LGD, and EAD modeling for wholesale), as well as anti-money laundering modeling, macroeconomic scenario generation, and Data Science. Steve also holds leadership roles in enterprise risk, ESG and Inflation/Stagflation scenario analysis, and artificial intelligence and machine learning governance.