Management Team / Advisory Board Bios
There are seven senior team members each with dozens of years of market experience. Experiences include the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, Morgan Stanley, BATS, MIAX, CME, IIT Professor, HKSE, CFTC, NASD, and in-house counsel at several financial conglomerates.
Robert Krause is the CEO of Demand Derivatives Corp., a vertically integrated U.S.-regulated futures exchange and clearing house with four innovative, proprietary instrument designs and blockchain clearing on the most liquid, traditional underlying assets. Prior to the merging of the individual product companies (VolX and RealDay) under the DDC corporate umbrella, he managed the companies separately.Mr. Robert Krause was Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of both The VolX Group Corporation (realized volatility indices and derivative instruments) and RealDay Options Corporation (delayed-strike daily options). Robert was also the Founder and Manager of HFDDX Corporation, a pioneering firm promoting cost sharing of comprehensive hedge fund due diligence services. Previously, Robert was Senior Vice President at Zurich Capital Markets. Within the Risk Management Division, he headed the group performing credit assessment for a portfolio of over 700 hedge funds with exposure close to $14 billion. He was also a senior member on the investment committee for Javelin, an actively managed fund of funds with assets over $1 billion. Previously, he was Executive Vice President, Alternative Investments at Mitsui Commodities where he oversaw the managed-futures, hedge fund, and private equity product lines. Before that, Robert was Vice President, Institutional Equity Derivatives at Morgan Stanley. There, he led the institutional training and education effort, and was the Editor-in-Chief of the quantitative research monthly magazine. Mr. Krause was a registered Commodity Trading Advisor, who brought volatility trading to the managed-futures industry. He was also with the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) as the Manager, Option Products Marketing, and Director, GLOBEX Marketing.
Mr. Krause graduated with a B.S. degree in Economics with an emphasis in math, macroeconomics, and derivative markets from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Mr. Krause wrote The Volatility Handbook and CME Futures and Options Strategy Guide. He patented listed realized volatility instruments and has patents pending in realized volatility indices, forward-starting daily options, limited risk futures, and other financial patents pending.
Donald Schlesinger is the President of Demand Derivatives Corp. Prior to the merging of the individual product companies under the DDC corporate umbrella, he was instrumental in directing the companies separately.
â€‹Donald Schlesinger was the Vice Chairman and Chief Strategy Officer of The VolX Group Corporation and RealDay Options Corporationâ€” after a period of semi-retirement. Before this he was an Executive Director in Morgan Stanley Dean Witterâ€™s Worldwide Equity Derivatives department. As the Director of Derivatives Education and Training, some of Donâ€™s responsibilities included the creation, supervision, and delivery of in-house programs, as well as educational seminars for clients. In 1993, Don helped establish and perfect risk-management techniques and systems for global equity derivatives traders at the firm. Schlesinger was a member of the Institutional Equity Divisionâ€™s derivatives risk-management committee and served as a liaison between that unit and the firmâ€™s head of global risk management.
Prior to assuming these roles, he was a Proprietary Trader and Options Strategist at Morgan Stanley, from 1984 to 1994, where he managed the firmâ€™s domestic over-the-counter options book and priced structured products for clients. Schlesinger has lectured extensively on options theory and hedging techniques, having participated in many industry-sponsored events, and has written numerous published papers and articles on options strategies. Among them are: â€œOptions Alphabet Soup,â€ â€œLooking Askew at Volatility,â€ â€œHedging First- and Second-Order Sensitivities of Optionsâ€ (â€œLearning Curveâ€ article in Derivatives Week), â€œVolatility Cones Come in Many Flavorsâ€ (co-authored with Robert Krause, for Futures Magazine), â€œHedging Imperfect Basketsâ€ (co-authored with Robert Krause, for Derivatives Strategy magazine), and â€œVolatility Trading: RealVol futures Jump into the Mixâ€ (co-authored with Robert Krause, for Swiss Derivatives Review).
In 1996, Don was part of the third-place â€œAll-America Research Team,â€ named by Institutional Investor, which commented: â€œThe groupâ€™s â€˜top notchâ€™ educational seminars, under the direction of Donald Schlesinger, demystify derivatives, according to a participant.â€ In 1991â€“92, Schlesinger was the featured speaker in over 100 presentations of Morgan Stanleyâ€™s PERCS product to institutional clients in the U.S. and Europe.
Since leaving the firm, Don has continued to lecture at Morgan Stanley, and has also done training and presentations for Goldman Sachs, Lehman Brothers, Deutsche Bank, Credit Suisse First Boston, the Options Industry Council, and Electronic Trading Group.
As a former teacher in the New York City school system, Schlesinger taught high school-level mathematics and French for 16 years. He holds Master of Philosophy and M.A. degrees in French from the City University of New York, and a B.S. in mathematics, cum laude, from The City College of New York.
Wendy E. Robinson is General Counsel of Demand Derivatives Corp. She has been Of Counsel to Oâ€™Neill & Partners LLC for the past two years, specializing in assisting existing and start-up businesses with tokenized offerings. She has worked for over 30 years in the financial services industry, serving as General Counsel for The VolX Group Corporation, RealDay Options Corporation, and Event Capital Markets. Prior to these positions, Ms. Robinson was Senior Counsel in PaineWebberâ€™s Legal Department, specializing in derivative transactions, stock lending, and corporate governance. Ms. Robinson also worked in the Legal Departments of Smith Barney, Merrill Lynch Futures, and E.F. Hutton, as well as in the Options and Commodities Departments of E.F. Hutton. She served as arbitration counsel with the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD) and as staff counsel in the Trading and Markets Division of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).Ms. Robinson graduated summa cum laude from the University of Bridgeport and received her J.D. from Rutgers University School of Law â€” Newark. Ms. Robinson is admitted to the bar in New York, New Jersey, and California, and admitted to practice in the U.S. District Courts for the District of New Jersey and the Northern District of California, as well as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. She has served as a member of the National Futures Association (NFA) Business Conduct Committee and as chairperson of hearing panels of the NFA Hearing Committee.
Jeromee Johnson serves as a Board Director for Demand Derivatives Corp. He is an experienced start-up executive and an investor, entrepreneur, and technologist with a passion for global markets and market structure. He is a widely recognized industry executive, an electronic trading and capital markets systems expert, and has been acknowledged globally for sharing insight in the areas of trading technology, financial markets regulation, and the connection between them.Â Jeromee was Executive Vice President and a member of the executive team at Miami International Holdings, where he was responsible for their global markets initiatives. Prior to that, he was responsible for the options business at BATS Global Markets. At BATS, he led their entry into derivatives and was responsible for the creation, management, and strategy of BATS Options. During his seven years on the management team at BATS, the company scaled from a single U.S. equity exchange to operate almost a dozen of the largest cross-asset exchanges, globally.
Mr. Johnson was President of 3D Markets â€“ the first options â€œdark poolâ€ â€“ a crossing network for equity options, designed to help bring large institutional OTC trades back to the listed, regulated environment. At 3D, he was responsible for strategy, product development, technology, sales, and brokerage operations. Prior to 3D, at the TABB Group, Jeromee advised capital market participants, and their providers, on technology and strategy issues. He is the author of a number of seminal industry titles including: Locating the Invisible: Aggregating Dark Book Liquidity, Groping in the Dark: Navigating Crossing Networks and Other Dark Pools of Liquidity, and Trading at Light Speed: Analyzing Low Latency Market Data Infrastructure.
Richard Heckinger is a Board Director of Demand Derivatives Corp. He was formerly Vice President and Senior Policy Advisor, Financial Markets Group, at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. He started his career in financial markets at the Chicago Board Options Exchange in 1973. His career has included executive positions and project management of financial market operations, products and risks. He has a wide range of international experience including Vice President, Operations and Director of the Montreal (Stock) Exchange and its options clearing corporation, respectively. After serving as Clearing House Manager, he was Vice President, Financial Marketing at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) which included a four-year posting as Executive Director of CMEâ€™s London Representative Office. Following the market crisis in 1987 he was recruited to be the Chief Operating Officer of the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong (SEHK), In that position he was responsible for the development of a screen-based trading system for equities, fixed income and unit trusts (mutual funds). Equity options trading was introduced soon after. He served as a Council (board) Member of SEHK as well as a Member of the Board of Directors of its subsidiary, the Hong Kong Securities Clearing Corporation (HKSCC). He subsequently became Chief Executive of HKSCC, also continuing as a Board Member. He oversaw the project to migrate securities settlement and custody from paper and check-based manual processes to a centralized clearing and depository book-entry structure that exceeded international standards. After six years in Hong Kong he joined State Street Corp. in Boston as Senior Vice President, Global Operations where he was responsible for corporate-wide management for the conversion of all operations, funds, trusts, custody, payments systems and corporate affairs to the Euro. Following that successful conversion project, that comprised 17 business units and world-wide (90 countries) customer relationships, he was responsible for collective investments on State Streetâ€™s Global Link platform in its treasury area. Returning to Chicago he was Head of the U.S. Representative Office for Deutsche Boerse AG and several of its subsidiaries including Eurex. Following that he joined the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago where he worked on market risks, infrastructure and regulations related to the financial crisis and its aftermath. He retired from the Fed in 2015.
â€‹Throughout his career he has served on international committees, including a Federal Reserve Bank of New York working group, the OTC Derivatives Regulatorsâ€™ Forum, SWIFT, and the International Securities Services Association (ISSA). He has spoken at numerous conferences on financial market topics as well as authored papers on financial market topics. Presently, he is a Contributing Editor to the Central Banking Journal, Associate Editor of the Journal of Financial Market Infrastructure and a Member of the Editorial Advisory Board of the Global Commodities Applied Research Digest.
He has a Master of Philosophy degree in Economics from the London School of Economics, a B.A. degree in Mathematics from the Illinois State University and completed the Advanced Management Course at the University of Chicago.
Dr. Andrew Kumiega has applied his Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering to research positions in both the manufacturing and the financial industry over the last 30 years. He has held multiple director and partner-level positions in financial services firms. At most of these firms, Dr. Kumiega was responsible for IT Governance/Risk including model governance and overall IT systems reliability management.Dr. Kumiega pioneered the application of software quality engineering and risk management to reduce risk and increase system availability for financial platforms. He applied this unique approach to investment management, market making, fund administration, and compliance. His relentless approach of continuous improvement resulted in moving many systems from 99.9% availability to 99.999% availability.Â
Dr. Kumiega is a facility member at the Illinois Institute of Technology. His industry research interests include: implied volatility models for equity derivatives, pricing models for convertible bonds, multi-factor stock selection models, quality, machine learning IT risk management , and project management for the financial service industry.
Dr. Kumiega is the co-author of Quality Money Management along with multiple journal articles. Dr. Kumiega holds a B.Sc. in Engineering Management from the University of Illinois, Chicago, an M.Sc in Industrial Engineering from the University of Illinois, Chicago, a Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering from the University of Illinois, Chicago, and an M.Sc. in Finance from Illinois Institute of Technology. Dr. Kumiega is currently a CQE, CSQE, CSQ member in the ASQ organization and a CISA, CRISC, CGEIT, and CISM certified member of ISACA.ORG.
Head of IT
Norman Wattenberger is the information technology head at Demand Derivatives Corp. He has worked for over 40 years in the IT field in the areas of operating systems, communications, security, databases, simulation, performance, financial applications, planning, and decision analysis. Prior to Demand Derivatives, he was co-founder and IT head at Decision Drivers, Inc, a technology decision-analysis corporation. He was responsible for development of expert systems and software used by buyers to analyze large IT acquisitions and by sellers to determine their positions in the marketplace. Clients included IBM, Dell, Sun, Cisco, Intel, and Hewlett-Packard. The company was acquired by Gartner Research where Wattenberger continued to direct the subsidiaryâ€™s software efforts.
â€‹Norm was a vice president at Citibank, leading the Strategy and Architecture Area for the international consumer businesses. This was a centralized technology group covering 75 businesses in 45 countries. Areas included back-office systems, transactions systems, and communications. The area also created the overall technology architecture for U.S. consumer businesses. The divisionâ€™s facilities management and computer center also reported to Norm.
Earlier, Norm was Associate Director, Center for Computing and Information Services, at Rutgers University, initially in charge of systems and later in charge of planning. This included acquisition and use of mainframe, minicomputers, microcomputers and communications for education and research.
Norm has also acted as an independent contractor in areas of performance, operating system modification, and applications development. Applications designed, developed, and implemented include credit union management and payroll systems.