OCC Reports Donohue to Stay On as OCC Executive Chairman

OCC reported that Craig Donohue has agreed to stay on as Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer for three additional years after his term expires in December.

Donohue also announced the creation of an Office of the Executive Chairman and CEO and enhancements to OCC's leadership structure.

"We have made significant and positive strides at OCC on behalf of our partner exchanges and clearing firms," said Donohue. "Thanks to our talented team, OCC is evolving from a clearing and settlement utility to becoming a systemically important market influencer, with increased emphasis on risk management and the resiliency required to effectively manage risk for the U.S. listed equity options and futures markets.

"The OCC board of directors agrees that we have accomplished much and have the chance to do more, and I have agreed to stay on as Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer for three more years. I am very appreciative of the support the board has given me and I am grateful for their leadership."

Donohue added, "While we have made great strides, much more opportunity lies ahead for OCC. The enhancements we are making to our leadership structure will strengthen our ability to better serve market participants, and reflect our organizational agility and the deep bench strength of our team."

Donohue announced the creation of an Office of the Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, which includes Michael McClain as Chief Operating Officer and Scot Warren being promoted to a new role as Chief Administrative Officer. "This is the right leadership structure for OCC's needs today, as it allows us to combine the breadth and depth of experience necessary to optimally support the organization as we move forward," he noted.

"Mike's role as Chief Operating Officer leverages his experience with technology and operations and will allow for increased focus on these vital areas," Donohue said. "These functions comprise approximately two-thirds of our current workforce. We intend for our technology to be transformational for OCC and the industry, and it will have a material impact on our core clearing processes. Mike will provide our technology and operations teams with an experienced hand and focused leadership to drive improved performance so that we can increase resiliency, enhance efficiency and reduce costs for market participants." Jim Kustusch, Senior Vice President, Operations, and Luke Moranda, Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer, will report to McClain.

Donohue noted, "As Chief Administrative Officer, Scot will be responsible for driving enterprise alignment and enhanced execution of our corporate objectives, which includes creating a high-performance execution environment and improving the enterprise-wide culture of ownership and accountability." Warren, formerly Executive Vice President, Business Development, will oversee OCC's finance, human resources, financial risk management, corporate planning, product and business development, and project management office.

Donohue also announced several other key promotions and appointments, saying "I am pleased that we are able to recognize and promote some of our talented colleagues while also successfully attracting top talent from outside of OCC."

-John Fennell, formerly Executive Vice President, Financial Risk Management, has been promoted to Executive Vice President and Chief Risk Officer, where he will be responsible for implementing OCC's risk management strategy. Fennell also will oversee OCC's model validation and enterprise risk management departments, along with security services, business continuity and disaster recovery, and vendor risk management areas. He replaces John Grace, who left OCC.

-Dale Michaels replaces Fennell as Executive Vice President, Financial Risk Management. He will be responsible for OCC's market, credit and liquidity risk, default management, customer margin methodologies and model development activities. Michaels joined OCC in January to work on the company's securities lending initiatives after a long career in risk management at CME Group where he led the integration of the risk management and clearing functions involving CME Group, The Chicago Board of Trade, the New York Mercantile Exchange and COMEX, creating significant capital and operational savings for market participants. Michaels brings 29 years of industry experience to his new role at OCC.

-Adi Agrawal has been promoted to Senior Vice President and Chief Audit Executive, where he will be responsible for strengthening and managing OCC's internal controls processes. Agrawal formerly was First Vice President, Internal Audit, and is an internationally recognized and experienced global assurance and risk executive with more than 25 years of experience leading information technology, process reengineering, risk and strategy. He replaces Jim Knoeck, who left OCC earlier this year.

-Chip Dempsey joins OCC in a new role of Senior Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer, and will lead OCC's efforts in strategy, planning, and business and product development. He is a business development strategist with 28 years of industry experience and an extensive global network of business leaders in the market structure and financial technology communities. Dempsey joins OCC from Morgan Stanley, where as Executive Director of Principal Strategic Investments, he co-led investments in market structure and fintech companies, and formulated investment theses regarding such areas as distributed ledgers, artificial intelligence and emerging markets. His previous clearinghouse experience includes the re-engineering of the Board of Trade Clearing Corp. after the departure of the Chicago Board of Trade.

-David Prosperi, formerly First Vice President, Public Relations, takes on additional responsibilities as First Vice President, Communications, The Options Industry Council, and Internet Services. He now oversees all external and internal communications activities as well as OCC's investor educational efforts on behalf of the listed options industry. Prosperi brings 36 years of public relations and communications experience to this new role at OCC.

-Julie Bauer joins OCC as Senior Vice President, Government Relations, where she will be responsible for developing and managing OCC's legislative, regulatory and educational activities with Members of Congress, regulators, and other policy makers, along with representatives of the exchange and financial services sectors. With 26 years of industry experience, Bauer also will oversee the activities of the U.S. Securities Markets Coalition, which represents the listed options industry and OCC on issues of common interest before the U.S. Congress and regulators. She joins OCC from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), and replaces Joe Corcoran, who will transition to OCC's Legal Department where he will continue to focus on legislative, tax policy and regulatory issues.

OCC is an equity derivatives clearing organization.

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  • Alexandra Scarborough
    Gilt and Sarah Jessica Parker Unveil SJP by Sarah Jessica Parker Bridal Collection for Spring

    Sarah Jessica Parker, in partnership with Gilt, kicked off the exclusive launch of SJP by Sarah Jessica Parker Bridal, Gilt’s first foray into bridal ready-to-wear that would have Carrie Bradshaw swooning.

    The collection includes dresses, skirts, bodysuits and other pieces, ranging in price from $295 to $2,395 and from sizes 0 to 14.

    "Collaborating with Gilt on my first bridal ready-to-wear collection was an opportunity I couldn't pass up," said Sarah Jessica Parker. "The team there is brilliant and allowed me to be imaginative and take risks as I was designing for the non-traditional bride. It has been quite fun to play around with colors, fabrics and details to create unique pieces for all kinds of brides." The collection, comprised of ten styles, is inspired by Parker's vision of a modern, non-traditional bride, and is designed to dress a woman for a variety of wedding milestone moments; from her bridal shower through her wedding reception. Styles offered are a unique mix of classic dresses and gowns, modern bodysuits, full skirts, and a jumpsuit. The color palette includes traditional bridal white, sleek black, plus pops of blush, poppy, light gray and blue.

    Designed in collaboration with Gilt, the collection was produced in New York City utilizing fabrics like cashmere and stretch crepe sourced from Spain, Italy and France.

    The pieces all feature carefully curated details like elegant bows, sophisticated cutouts, feathers, intricate embroidery and beautiful hand-stitched beading. 

    The actress and style icon is no stranger to chic bridal wear. Carrie Badshaw, famously played by Parker, took part in an elaborate bridal photo shoot in Sex and the City: The Movie. The shoot featured gowns from designers like Christian Lacroix and Lanvin. Parker famously wore a black wedding gown for her own wedding to Matthew Broderick in 1997.

    "Not only is Sarah Jessica Parker's style known around the world, her point of view is one-of-a-kind," says Tom Ott, Chief Merchant of Gilt. "Sarah Jessica brings her impeccable taste and fashion sensibility to life in this collection. We think our customers will be delighted with the offering which is stylish and well-priced in the bridal category."

    As part of the bridal launch, Gilt will also offer 15 exclusive styles from the SJP by Sarah Jessica Parker footwear line, each of which are complementary to the bridal collection. 

    To correspond with the bridal collection launch, Gilt City will present offers from some of Sarah Jessica Parker's favorite places in New York City.

    The offers were each chosen as a way to help brides plan for and celebrate the big day with highlights including, Leather Spa, Lars Nord Studio Tailoring, Mah-Ze-Dahr Bakery, among others.

    More Information:

  • Alexandra Scarborough
    Tea Forté Introduces ‘Matcha’ Collection

    Convenience meets tradition in Tea Forté’s new Ceremonial Matcha Bowl Set and the Matcha Single Steeps.

    The company said its spring harvested, shade grown, stone ground, organic matcha tea is best served in a centuries-old Japanese tea ceremony called chanoyu: a preparation technique known for its centering meditative qualities.

    "The launch of Tea Forté's Matcha collection represents our continued commitment to wellness and cultivating all the potential mental and physical health benefits of tea," says Tea Forté CEO Michael Gebrael. "In addition to our high quality Pure Matcha, we've also blended four distinct flavored Matcha varieties. Prepackaged in pouches measured out for a single serving, our Single Steeps Matcha is ideal for the office, travel, or to keep with you for a boost anytime."

    Tea Forté noted its handcrafted ceremonial tea bowl, handmade bamboo whisk and measuring ladle “encourages serene enjoyment of our premium Kosher, gluten-free and vegan matcha blends.” These include: Pure Matcha, Chocolate Matcha, Coconut Matcha, Ginger Matcha, and Chai Matcha.

    According to a release, in addition to its distinctive taste, matcha is prized for its health benefits. Steeped green tea contains only the antioxidants that can be extracted in water, while with matcha, the whole leaf is consumed.

    Available now in select stores and online at



QUICK 5 has released a year-end look at U.S. traveler behavior and trends for 2017, analyzing data to identify the most in-demand destinations, hotels, activities and more.

Among other insights, the roundup revealed:

  1. Labor Day was the busiest weekend for car rental
  2. Disney Theme Parks topped the list of things to do
  3. The average hotel stay was two nights
  4. Top destinations based on 2017 air travel included major global cities like New York, London and Bangkok
  5. Popular tourist destinations included Orlando, Cancun and Las Vegas