Speakers

Dr Robert Abela

The Prime Minister of Malta

Robert Abela is the 14th Prime Minister of Malta.

Robert Abela was born in Sliema on 7 December 1977. He received his primary education at St Francis School and attended St Aloysius’ College for his secondary education and sixth form. He graduated as a lawyer from the University of Malta in 2002.

Dr. Abela worked in the family law firm and has acted as the legal consultant of various organisations including public entities and trade unions.

He was elected as Member of Parliament in June 2017 and was appointed as legal adviser to the Cabinet of Ministers.

On 13 January 2020, he took office as the 14th Prime Minister of Malta after being elected as Party Leader by the members of Partit Laburista.

Whilst steering the country through a global pandemic, Dr. Abela presented his vision for Malta’s future built on five pillars: quality of life, infrastructure, education, environment, and good governance.

 Despite the challenges and difficulties presented by the pandemic, the government led by Robert Abela continued to reap successful economic results which led to the country’s lowest unemployment rate in history, whilst in parallel, implementing unprecedented reforms in good governance and rule of law. Dr. Abela even relinquished the Prime Minister’s powers such as when appointing officials to key posts such as the Chief Justice, the Attorney General and Police Commissioner, to further strengthen democracy and the institutions that deliver it: a first for a Maltese Prime Minister.

Dr Abela took office once again on 28 March 2022 after confirming victory in the General Elections of 26 March 2022 which saw Partit Laburista winning with the greatest majority in Maltese history.

Dr. Abela is married to Lydia, nee’ Zerafa, also a lawyer, and they have a daughter Giorgia Mae.


Richard Balarkas

Chairman, Saxo Capital Markets UK

Richard has been in the vanguard of change in financial market structure, regulation and trading for over 35 years. He is the chairman of Saxo Capital Markets UK the global online trading and investment platform, as well as a non-executive director of CBOE Europe, Chairman of Squarebook (IPO innovator). His previous roles include President and CEO of Instinet Europe, Global Head of Electronic Trading at Credit Suisse, COO for trading at BZW, founding CEO of QCA (Quoted Company Alliance), and Head of National Market Development at the London Stock Exchange. In 2005 he was elected to serve as Co-Chair of the FPL Global Steering Committee, the organisation responsible for setting industry standards for electronic trading. He has received a number of awards for his achievements and his thoughts on markets and regulation have been broadcast and published by most of the major media channels.

Rajeeva Bandaranaike

Chief Executive Officer, Colombo Stock Exchange

Mr. Rajeeva Bandaranaike is the Chief Executive Officer of the Colombo Stock Exchange. He has served in a senior management capacity at the Stock Exchange in Trading, Clearing and Settlement, Branch Development, Marketing, Human Resources and has led several market development initiatives. He also serves on the Board of the Lanka Financial Services Bureau Ltd (Local SWIFT Service Bureau) and serves on multiple Capital Market and Financial industry Committees including the Presidential Task Force on Protecting Minority Investors. 

He has also served previously as the Chief Executive officer of two listed companies and counts a total of 30 years’ experience in financial services. 

Mr. Bandaranaike holds a Degree in Law (LLB) from the Open University of Sri Lanka, a Master’s in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Southern Queensland, Australia, a Post Graduate Diploma in Marketing from the Chartered Institute of Marketing (UK) and the Stock Broker Certification from the Securities Institute of Australia.

Ittai Ben-Zeev

Chief Executive Officer, Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE)

Mr. Ittai Ben-Zeev was born in 1975. He is the TASE CEO since January 2017. Prior to joining TASE, Mr. Ben-Zeev served as Executive Vice President, Head of Capital Markets Division, Bank Leumi and was also a member of the Bank's Management (2013 - 2016).

Between the years 2010 - 2013 he was the Deputy Head of Capital Markets Division in Bank Leumi and during 2007 - 2010 Mr. Ben-Zeev managed the Forex and Derivatives Dealing Room of the Bank.

Previously, he served as an investment banker at Merrill Lynch Israel, as well as Merrill Lynch Technology Group in London.

His education includes an L.L.B in Law, Tel-Aviv University, and he is a graduate of three programmes: the Merrill Lynch Analyst Training Programme; the Insead Management Acceleration Programme; and the Directors' and Officers' Course, Herzliya Interdisciplinary Center.

Mr. Ben-Zeev is a Licensed Investment Advisor in Israel.

Tim Brennan

Head of Capital Markets & Exchange Strategy, Standard and Poor Dow Jones Indices

Tim Brennan is Head of Capital Markets and Exchange Strategy for S&P Dow Jones Indices (S&P DJI). In this role, Tim focuses on how S&P DJI interacts with the various areas of capital markets with an emphasis on exchanges, liquidity and product issuance (exchange-traded derivatives [ETDs], exchange-traded products [ETPs]). Tim ensures that S&P DJI has a comprehensive strategy for how best to optimize its exchange collaboration, with the aim of getting S&P DJI branded ETDs and ETPs listed on the exchanges that satisfy the needs of our clients, liquidity providers and liquidity seekers.

Prior to joining S&P DJI, Tim was the Chief Commercial Officer for ABN AMRO Clearing Chicago. It was in this role that balance sheet optimization became a primary focus. Previous to working in clearing, Tim held various roles in trading, market making, execution and industry advocacy across multiple asset classes for both the buy side and sell side. He was at the forefront of automated trading in the U.S. as a member of the team at Morgan Stanley that built the automated options market making business. After Morgan Stanley, Tim joined Citadel and was instrumental in starting the Citadel Execution Services business. Tim was a Managing Director at Merrill Lynch, where he was responsible for the options market making business. He also spent time at the NYSE, rounding out his education in trading and markets. Tim has extensive knowledge covering ETDs, ETPs, fx derivatives, market structure, algorithmic trading, clearing and exchanges. He is passionate about the benefits of transparency and open access in markets. 

Tim has served as a Director on the boards of the International Securities Exchange (ISE) and Boston Options Exchange (BOX). He holds the following licenses: 7, 63, 3, 4, 24, 55 and 56.

Dr Christopher P. Buttigieg

Chair of the Regulatory Committee and Member of the Authority’s Executive Committee and Risk Committee, Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA)

Dr. Buttigieg has twenty-two years of experience in financial regulation and supervision. 

He is currently the Chief Officer – Supervision, responsible for the Supervision Directorate, the Chair of the Regulatory Committee and a member of the Authority’s Executive Committee and Risk Committee.  He is responsible for the co-ordination and implementation of the supervisory and regulatory strategy across all the sectors under the MFSA’s remit. 

Dr Buttigieg is a member of the European Securities and Markets Authority’s (ESMA) Board of Supervisors and the Chair of the ESMA Data Standing Committee. 

Throughout his career at the MFSA Dr Buttigieg was responsible for managing various functions and teams. He was also responsible for the implementation of several European Directives and Regulations and the development of new regulatory frameworks at national level. 

Dr Buttigieg has a commerce degree (B.Com 1998), an accountancy degree (B.Accty. Hons. 2000) and a financial services law degree (M.A. Fin. Ser. 2003) from the University of Malta, as well as a European Union Law degree (M.A. EU Law and Soc 2005) and a doctoral degree in law (Ph.D 2014) from the University of Sussex (UK). His Doctoral thesis deals with the governance of EU securities regulation and supervision. Dr Buttigieg is a senior lecturer in the Banking and Finance Department of the University of Malta. He is also a member of the Board of Trustees of the Academy of European Law (ERA) in Trier, Germany, and a visiting lecturer at the same institution.

He is an active researcher and has published various papers in reputable journals, including the Columbia Journal of European Law, the ERA Forum, the Journal of Financial Regulation and Compliance, the Journal of Business Law and the Law and Financial Markets Review. His latest publication deals with the institutional architecture for financial supervision of a small jurisdiction and proposes reforms with a view of achieving more efficient and cost effective financial supervision.

Hon. Clyde Caruana

Minister for Finance and Employment, Ministry for Finance and Employment

The Minister for Finance and Employment, Clyde Caruana, was appointed Minister in November 2020, an Economist by training, has held the position of Executive Chairman at the State employment agency, Jobsplus, since 2014, more recently had taken up office as Prime Minister’s Chief of Staff. 

During his tenure at Jobsplus, as Chairperson, he authored several position documents and policy papers, which have been central to the government’s labour force policy. Additionally, he was the main driver to implement these policies and reforms, most notably, related to free childcare, in-work benefits and others. 

He had previously worked at the National Statistics Office between 2007 and 2012. Caruana also lectures in Economics at the Faculty of Economics, Management and Accountancy at the University of Malta. 

He has written papers and articles in the welfare state and the labour market, as well as related research and consultancy work.

Laura M. Cha

Chairman, Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing

Mrs Cha is Chairman of Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd and a member of the Financial Leaders Forum in Hong Kong.

 Mrs Cha is also an Independent Non-Executive Director of Ant Group Co., Ltd. , a Senior International Advisor of Foundation Assets Management Sweden AB and a member of Sotheby’s International Advisory Board. In addition, she is also Vice Chairman of the International Advisory Council of the China Securities Regulatory Commission, and a Director of the World Federation of Exchanges.

 Mrs Cha became the first, and to-date, the only person outside Mainland China to join the Central Government of the People’s Republic of China at the vice ministerial rank when she was appointed as Vice Chairman of the China Securities Regulatory Commission in January 2001. She served in that position until 2004. Mrs Cha worked for the Securities and Futures Commission in Hong Kong from 1991 to 2000, becoming its Deputy Chairman in 1998.

 Mrs Cha was a member of Executive Council of the Government of Hong Kong from 2004 to 2022. She was also Chairman of The Financial Services Development Council of Hong Kong from January 2013 to July 2018, and Chairman of the University Grants Committee from 2007 to 2011.

 She was awarded a Silver Bauhinia Star in 2001, a Gold Bauhinia Star in 2009 and the Grand Bauhinia Medal in 2017 by the Hong Kong Government for her public service.

Jos Dijsselhof

Chief Executive Officer, SIX Group

Jos Dijsselhof joined SIX in January 2018 as CEO. He holds degrees in computer science and business administration, and has a long track record in international management in the financial sector. He has previously held positions at ABN Amro Bank, Royal Bank of Scotland and ANZ Australia & New Zealand Banking Group in various countries including Hong Kong and Singapore. His most recent role was Chief Operating Officer (2014–June 2017) and CEO ad interim (2015) at Euronext in Amsterdam.

Other Activities and Mandates

Chairman of the Board of Directors Bolsas y Mercados Españoles (BME), Madrid

Background

Before his appointment as COO of Euronext, Dijsselhof was a general manager at Australia and New Zealand Bank in Singapore. He has over 20 years of experience in the financial industry and has worked in Europe and Asia institutions including Royal Bank of Scotland and ABN Amro Bank.

Education

Jos Dijsselhof earned a bachelor's degree in computer science from the Stenden University of Applied Sciences and an MSc in business administration from the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences. He completed the Advanced Management Program at INSEAD.

Marie E. Dzanis

Chief Executive Officer, Asset Management, EMEA, Northern Trust Asset Management

Marie Dzanis, CIMA®, is head of asset management in EMEA, responsible for the end-to-end asset management business in the region including governance, strategy, operations, portfolio management, product business development and talent of Northern Trust Asset Management.

Marie is the CEO of Northern Trust Global Investment, LTD (U.K.) and sits on the boards of Northern Trust Global Funds, PLC; Northern Trust Fund Managers (Ireland) Limited, Northern Trust Investment Funds and FlexShares ETF ICAV Funds. Marie serves on several executive, business and risk committees globally for Northern Trust Asset Management including the Northern Trust Asset Management Executive Committee and EMEA cross-business.

Previous to joining Northern Trust in 2011, Marie held executive positions at iShares/Blackrock, JPMorgan Asset Management and Smith Barney. Marie’s comprehensive business acumen highlights driving diverse and profitable growth in businesses. Her multifaceted career began as a financial advisor and subsequently includes experience in securities lending, trading, product development, sales management and profit-and-loss management.

As a recognized industry leader and media contributor, Marie has been celebrated as among the "Women to Watch" from Investment News (2017) and “Top Women in Asset Management” by Money Management Executive (2015). Marie sits on the of the board of directors of the Investment Association in the U.K., along with the Investment Association’s financial, audit and risk committee. She is a member of the C200 most successful women in business, along with Irish Funds and Women in ETFs.

Marie has a bacherlor’s degree in political theory from the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. She is a Certified Investment Management Analyst®. Additionally, Marie is on the women’s board of the University of Chicago Cancer Foundation, Advisory Board for BlinkNow Charitable Foundation. She also is a producer for the Maggie Doyne documentary called “Love Letters to my Children.”

Pinar Emirdag

Global Head of Digital Client Services for Markets Operations, JP Morgan

Pinar Emirdag joined JP Morgan as global head of digital client services for markets operations in October 2019. She oversees the development of digital products and solutions as part of JP Morgan’s plans to overhaul operational experiences for clients. 

Emirdag joined State Street in 2017 focusing on the custodian bank’s efforts with digital assets, digital capital markets, digital custody and the Utility Settlement Coin initiative, now known as Fnality.

Pinar Emirdag holds doctorate and master’s degrees in physics and a master’s degree in electrical engineering from Brown University. Pinar’s research field was development of new numerical techniques in theoretical particle physics.


Gabriela Figueiredo Dias

Chair, International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants (IESBA)

Ms. Gabriela Figueiredo Dias took office as Chair of the International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants on January 1, 2022. She was appointed for an initial three-year term.

Ms. Figueiredo Dias has extensive experience in international standard setting, legal and regulatory structure and governance, and academia. Previously, she was the Executive Chair (2016-2021) and Deputy Chair (2015-2016) of the Portuguese Securities Commission – CMVM, the authority responsible for regulating and supervising the markets of financial instruments, covering listed companies, asset managers, auditors, and investment firms.  There, she managed and provided strategic direction to the CMVM and represented the organization in regional and global financial forums.  Ms. Figueiredo Dias joined the CMVM in 2007 as Senior Counsel on international affairs and regulatory policy and during 2008-2015 she served in several senior leadership roles, including Head of the International and Regulatory Policy Department and of the Markets, Issuers, and Financial Information Department, and Advisor to the Chair.

Ms. Figueiredo Dias served as a Board Member of the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO), Board member of the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), Chair of the ESMA Investment Management Standing Committee, member of ESMA’s Management Board, and a member of ESMA’s Mediation Panel. She was also a member of the Portuguese National Council of Financial Regulators.  In addition, Ms. Figueiredo Dias served as Vice-Chair of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Corporate Governance Committee. She was a member of IOSCO’s Sustainability Task Force (2020-2021) and an observer at the Monitoring Board of the IFRS Foundation. Ms. Figueiredo Dias is a founding member of the Portuguese Corporate Governance Institute and a member of the European Corporate Governance Institute. Since February 2021, Ms. Figueiredo Dias is also the President of the General Council of the University of Coimbra in Portugal.

Over her 30+ years career, Ms. Figueiredo Dias published numerous papers, articles, and books, as author or co-author, in the field of corporate governance, auditors, pension funds, corporate boards, and sustainability. More recently, during her term as CMVM Chair, Ms. Figueiredo Dias has focused on Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) matters and integrity of professionals in financial information and management. With such a focus, Ms. Figueiredo Dias has led a progressive mindset transformation amidst the Portuguese market stakeholders towards a more sustainable and ethical financial ecosystem.

Ms. Figueiredo Dias holds a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in law from the Coimbra University Law School. She did extensive academic research in several Universities in the UK and US and holds a certificate in Leadership and Communications from Nova University (Lisbon).

Emil Framnes

Global Head of Equity Trading and Transition, Norges Bank Investment Management

Emil Framnes is the Global Head of Equity Trading and Transition at Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM), the Norwegian sovereign wealth fund.  Emil’s responsibilities include all execution spanning electronic and high touch equity markets, managing teams of traders based in Oslo, New York and Singapore. 

Emil also manages a team of portfolio managers who manage the Fund’s transition activities including inflows, rebalances and implementation of strategic investment decisions. To support these global functions, Emil also manages a trading regulation review team, which publishes industry white papers on well-functioning markets and submits NBIM’s views on market structure regulatory reviews. He is also a member of NBIM’s investment committee. 

Emil earned a BSc in Mathematics and an MSc in Financial and Actuarial Mathematics from University of Oslo, Norway.

Umesh  Gajria

Global Head of Index-Linked Products, Bloomberg

Umesh Gajria is the Global Head of Index-Linked Products at Bloomberg, overseeing index derivative products and analytics. In addition, he leads the firm’s efforts in the transition to Risk Free Rates (RFRs) including ISDA fallbacks. Earlier he served as COO for Bloomberg’s Enterprise Product business, after joining the firm in 2017. Previously, Mr. Gajria was an Executive Director of Global Business Development at CME Group where he led growth initiatives for the Financial Products business. Before that he worked in various roles at US Bank, JP Morgan and Lexis Nexis.

Mr. Gajria holds a B.S. in industrial engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Nicoletta Giusto

Independent Member of the CCP Supervisory Committee and Director for Central Counterparties (CCPs), European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA)

Nicoletta Giusto is an Independent Member of the CCP Supervisory Committee and Director for Central Counterparties (CCPs) at the European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA)

In 1987 she joined Consob to work at the General Secretariat to the Board and subsequently at the International Relations Office. In 1998 she joined the European Commission where she was employed at the Securities Markets Unit of DG Internal Market and Financial Services until 2001. In 2002 and 2003 she was Pre-Accession Advisor at the Romanian Securities Commission (EU funded Phare Project). Afterwards, she returned to Consob and was appointed Head of the International Relations Office in 2006. 

She has been involved in several international working groups and activities, including peer reviews at IOSCO and FSB level. Even before joining ESMA she followed closely and took part in various ESMA activities including by chairing several Standing Committees such as the Investment Management Standing Committee, the Post-Trading Standing Committee and the Market Integrity Standing Committee.  

Nicoletta Giusto graduated in Law at the University of Genoa (Magna cum Laude) and achieved a Master in Law & Economics of the EU at the University of Rome La Sapienza.

Iosif Itkin

Chief Executive Officer and co-founder, Exactpro Systems Limited

Paul Jiganti

Managing Director of Business Development, IMC

Paul Jiganti has been at IMC as Managing Director of Business Development in since 2015. He is responsible for facilitating IMC’s business expansion by building new partnerships and expanding into new areas. Mr. Jiganti began his career as an independent market maker on the Cboe floor before spending 16 years at Susquehanna Investment Group in many roles eventually as Associate Director in charge of the Chicago office. He spent a year as a consultant to Nasdaq before joining TD Ameritrade where he was Managing Director in charge of market structure and retail client advocacy from 2012-2015.

Mr. Jiganti previously served on the Board of Directors of both the Cboe and Direct Edge, Nasdaq Quality of Markets Committee, FINRA’s Limit up Limit down Advisory Committee, as well as Co-Chaired Cboe’s PAC. Until recently he chaired the SIFMA Listed Options Committee and today he chairs the Listed Options Market Structure Working Group, serves on FIA PTG executive committee, Miami International Securities Exchange, and MIAX Emerald Securities Exchange Board of Directors, as well as Cboe Advisory Committee. Mr. Jiganti has an Economics degree from University of San Diego and is series 7 and 24 licensed.


Edward Knight

Executive Vice Chairman, Nasdaq

As Vice Chairman, Edward Knight manages global government relations and serves as a senior advisor on public policy and litigation.

During his tenure as Nasdaq’s General Counsel from 2001 to 2019, Ed championed many causes for investors and public companies: proxy reform; corporate governance modernization, including the JOBS ACT passage in 2012; regulatory reform; immigration reform; and enhancing the self-regulatory organization model. He has worked tirelessly to ensure Nasdaq’s U.S. equity market maintains its position as the premier global marketplace for capital formation.

Ed currently serves as a Trustee of the University of Texas Law School Foundation, a member of the Advisory Board of Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs, and a member of the District of Columbia, Texas and Supreme Court Bars. He is a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations and sits on its Committee on Corporate Affairs. Ed is Vice Chairman of the Board of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Vice Chairman of the U.S. Chamber’s U.S.-India Business Council, and also sits on TechNet's Executive Council. He is a member of the Nasdaq Dubai Board and the Board of the World Federation of Exchanges. He is based in Nasdaq’s Washington, D.C., office.

Before serving as FINRA’s General Counsel from 1999-2001 and then NASDAQ’s General Counsel, Ed served as General Counsel of the U.S. Department of the Treasury from September 1994 to June 1999 — the longest tenure since the position was created in 1934. Upon his departure, he received the Alexander Hamilton Award, the Department's highest honor. He also received the Honor Award from the Secret Service. Before being named Treasury General Counsel, Ed served as Executive Secretary and Senior Advisor to Secretary of the Treasury Lloyd Bentsen. He also served as a member of the Obama Transition Team at the U.S. Treasury Department in 2008-2009.

Prior, he was a partner with the law firm of Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer and Feld in Washington, D.C. A Texas native, Ed received his Bachelor of Arts, with honors, in Latin American Studies from the University of Texas at Austin and his Juris Doctorate from the University of Texas School of Law.

Antoine Larmanjat

Technical Director, Office of the Chief Technology Officer, Google

Antoine Larmanjat is a Technical Director in the Office of the CTO at Google Cloud and currently lead the EMEA practice. Antoine currently focuses on AI applied to Code and Development, and on web3.

Prior to Google, Antoine was the Group CIO of Euler Hermes, the worldwide leader in Credit Insurance where he led a major transformation of its IT landscape and architecture. 

Prior to Euler Hermes, Antoine founded Payconiq (ING Bank spinoff), a mobile payments FinTech and prior to Payconiq, Antoine was Head of ING Direct France IT. Antoine also had a number of IT positions at LVMH (Wines and Spirits) and HP (Internal IT).

Antoine holds a computer science degree of UTC (Université de Technologie de Compiègne) in Computer Science and a Master’s degree in Computer Science from NC State on Parallel Computing on Cray computers.


Paul A. Leder

Of Counsel, Miller & Chevalier Chartered

Paul Leder, a former Director of the SEC’s Office of International Affairs (2014-2018), specializes in securities enforcement, compliance, and complex litigation, with a particular focus on cross-border issues.  He helps clients navigate the challenge of conflicting regulatory regimes, as well as simultaneous investigations by criminal and regulatory authorities, both from the U.S. and other jurisdictions.  

Mr. Leder has advised globally active firms on cross-border issues, including on developing engagement strategies with foreign regulators and international standard setting bodies.  He has led internal investigations on behalf of boards of directors and management involving the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), accounting fraud, and insider trading.  Mr. Leder also advises clients on developing and evaluating compliance programs on a range of issues, including insider trading and anti-corruption.

John McPartland

Senior Advisor, Hidden Road Partners LP

John McPartland is Senior Advisor at Hidden Road Partners, a quantitative investment firm.  He spent the entirety of his professional career in the derivatives industry in the roles of commercial banker, broker, FCM executive, exchange member, CCP executive and until his recent retirement, Senior Policy Advisor in the Financial Markets Group of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.  In that capacity, he participated in influencing public policy germane to high frequency trading, market structure, CCP default waterfall components, and market concentration issues.  He is a graduate from the University of Minnesota and a US Air Force veteran.


Summer Mersinger

Commissioner, Commodity Futures Trading Commission

Summer K. Mersinger was nominated by President Biden to serve as a Commissioner of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission and was unanimously confirmed by the Senate. She was sworn into office on March 30, 2022. 

Prior to her appointment, Ms. Mersinger served as the Chief of Staff to CFTC Commissioner Dawn D. Stump.  She also served as the Director of the Office of Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission under former Chairman Heath Tarbert. 

Ms. Mersinger has 20 years of Capitol Hill and government relations experience. Prior to joining the CFTC, she was Senior Vice President at Smith-Free Group, a leading government affairs practice, where she worked on financial services issues including advocating for large fintech organizations. 

From 2004 to 2016, Ms. Mersinger was a top aide to current Senate Minority Whip John Thune, who represents her home state of South Dakota. Most recently she served as his DC Chief of Staff, coordinating legislative activities for Sen. Thune’s team and working regularly with Senate leadership and senior staff on both sides of the aisle. Ms. Mersinger was instrumental during policy debates involving banking, finance, telecommunications, surface transportation, agriculture, and trade issues. Ms. Mersinger was also directly involved in the communications efforts spearheaded by Sen. Thune through his leadership post on the Senate Republican Conference. 

Prior to joining Sen. Thune’s staff, Ms. Mersinger was a director of government relations at Arent Fox, and she also worked in Sen. Thune’s office while he was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1999 to 2002. Summer completed her undergraduate degree from the University of Minnesota and her law degree from the Catholic University’s Columbus School of law. She is a proud mother of four children, two daughters and two sons, and resides in Northern Virginia with her husband.

Dr Michelle Mizzi Buontempo

Acting CEO, Malta Financial Services Authority

Michelle Mizzi Buontempo was appointed as Chief Officer Enforcement in March 2020, after five years occupying the position of Head of Conduct Supervision within the MFSA.  As from 9 September 2022 the Board of Governors has appointed Dr Mizzi Buontempo as Acting CEO.  

Michelle has over twenty years of experience in the regulation and supervision of different areas within financial services, including supervision of investment firms and fiduciaries. She represented the MFSA at various Committees of the ESAs.

During her career within the MFSA, Michelle has been entrusted with the responsibility of piloting a number of projects including the setting up of a regulatory regime to enhance consumer protection in the investments and insurance sector, as well the establishment of a new regulatory framework for trustees and company service providers.

Michelle regularly lectures on corporate governance and consumer protection. An advocate by profession, Michelle was awarded a Masters Degree in Financial Services from the University of Malta. She also holds a warrant to practice in the Maltese Courts. Prior to joining the MFSA, she headed the corporate division of a leading audit firm specialising in financial services.


Oscar Onyema

Group CEO, Nigerian Exchange Group

Mr. Oscar N. Onyema, OON, is the Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Nigerian Exchange Group (NGX Group) Plc, (formerly known as Nigerian Stock Exchange) a role he started after successfully completing his 10-year tenure as the CEO of The Nigerian Stock Exchange in 2021. In his current role, he is the Chairman of the Group Executive Committee. 

Mr. Onyema serves on several other domestic and international boards.  He is the Chairman of Central Securities Clearing System Plc (CSCS), the Central Securities Depository for the Nigerian capital market. He is also the Chairman of NG Clearing Limited, Nigeria’s premier central counterparty (CCP) and serves as a market-wide financial market infrastructure (FMI) in Nigeria which was incorporated in 2016. He also serves on the boards of EnterpriseNGR, Pension Commission of Nigeria (PENCOM), and the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE).  He is a member of the London Stock Exchange Group (LSEG) Africa Advisory Group (LAAG).  

He was President of African Securities Exchanges Association (ASEA) between 2014 and 2018. He has also served as a Council member of Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers (CIS); Global Agenda Council member of World Economic Forum (WEF); and Board member of FMDQ Securities Exchange Plc. Prior to relocating to Nigeria, he served as Senior Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer at American Stock Exchange (Amex) and ran NYSE Amex Equity business after the merger of NYSE Euronext and Amex in 2008.

Mr. Onyema is the proud awardee of the Nigerian national honour, Officer of the Order of the Niger (OON); Fellow of the Institute of Directors (IOD); Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers (CIS); Associate of Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment (CISI) in the UK; and Holder of FINRA Series 7, 24, and 63 in the USA. Forbes listed him as one of the ten most powerful men in Africa in 2015.

Mr. Onyema holds a B.Sc. (Computer Engineering) (1991) from Obafemi Awolowo University, MBA (Finance and Investments) (1998) from Baruch College, New York. He has also completed the Advanced Management Program (AMP) of Harvard Business School (2015).

Nils-Robert Persson

Founder & Chairman, Vermiculus Financial Technology AB

Nils-Robert Persson founded Vermiculus Financial Technology 2020 together with friends. The company will be a strong partner to major financial institutions. He is also a seed investor in 10+ different companies. 

Nils-Robert  acted as  Executive Chairman of Cinnober Financial Technology AB since 1999. The company was sold in February 2019. Cinnober became to be the main independent provider of  business critical systems to Exchanges and Clearinghouses.

Prior to joining Cinnober, he worked for nine years at OMX (Formerly the OM Group). He was CEO for OM Stockholm and deputy CEO for the OM Group with responsibility for the Transaction division including all exchanges and clearing houses in the group.  He also acted as chairman of OMLX, the London based derivatives exchange, SOM, the Finnish derivatives exchange and VPA, a back office for hire company. In the international arena Nils-Robert has been appointed board member in EACH, European Association of Clearing Houses, and a member of IOMA (International Option Markets Association). 

Before OM, Nils-Robert served as project manager and CEO for PmI, PenningmarknadsInformation AB, a market data company for fixed income products established by the Swedish central bank (Riksbanken) and four major investment banks.

Nils-Robert began his career at SE Banken in 1982, and holds a Master of Science degree in Industrial Engineering and Management from Linköpings Tekniska Högskola. In his private life Nils-Robert has three daughters with his wife Eva and is interested in all kind of sports with understandable rules (unfortunately not including cricket).

John W. Pietrowicz

Chief Financial Officer, CME Group

John W. Pietrowicz has served as Chief Financial Officer of CME Group since January 2015. His responsibilities include oversight of the company's corporate finance, accounting, investor relations, treasury, real estate and procurement functions. Before assuming his current role, he served as Senior Managing Director, Corporate Development and Finance, where he had day-to-day oversight of and responsibility for identifying, negotiating, financing and managing ongoing investments in new business opportunities. He also served as Managing Director, Corporate Finance and Deputy Chief Financial Officer since joining the company in 2003. Prior to joining the company, he served as Chief Financial Officer for The Merchants' Exchange, an electronic commodities exchange based in Chicago. He also held financial leadership positions for Ameritech.

Joseph Portelli

Executive Chairman, Malta Stock Exchange

Joseph has over 35 years of experience employed in various capacities within the financial industry in the U.S and in Malta. He has vast experience as a portfolio manager, currency, and commodity trader, and has worked with Bank of America, Nomura Securities, Goldman Sachs, Millburn Ridgefield, and Liongate Capital Management. He was also chief investment officer and managing director of FMG Funds, an emerging markets specialist.

He is currently Executive Chairman of the Malta Stock Exchange and sits on its Audit Committee. Between April 2013 and April 2015 he sat on its board and chaired its Risk Management Committee. In 2015 he was named chair of the Malta Stock Exchange PLC and has founded and chairs various MSE-owned subsidiaries such as the Malta Stock Exchange Institute, MSX a payment provider, and MDX a digital asset exchange. He also offers risk management consulting, and sits on the boards and investment committees of numerous asset management and financial service companies domiciled in Malta. Joseph also sits on the Malta Financial Services Advisory Council a board, constituted by the Finance Ministry of Malta. 

Joseph founded the Institute of Investment Analysis and was also a visiting lecturer at the University of Malta, and has taught courses at the Central Bank of Malta, Malta Institute of Accounting, and other institutions. He was a regular contributor to the Times of Malta, writing about investor education. Joseph graduated with a BA from Baruch College, City University of New York.

Dr Rupini Deepa Rajagopalan

Head of ESG Office, Berenberg Wealth and Asset Management

Dr. Rupini Deepa Rajagopalan is Head of the Berenberg ESG Office since March 2018 and supports the Wealth and Asset Management team in their sustainable investment products and offerings. She is responsible for the ESG policy, strategy, investment positioning, integration, product offering and innovation for Berenberg’s Wealth and Asset Management division. Before her role as Head of ESG Office, she was a Junior Professor of Business Administration especially in Social Investment at the University of Hamburg. Prior to that she has worked in various positions for banks and consulting firms in the USA and Malaysia. Dr. Rajagopalan received her doctorate in finance with a specialization in ESG from the University of Reading in UK. Dr Rajagopalan is member of the DVFA Sustainable Investing Commission and is part of the Content Oversight Committee and an instructor for the Association of Stewardship Professionals (StePs).

Robert Scharfe

Partner & Chair, Financial Services & CEO Practice, Odgers Berndtson, Luxembourg

Robert Scharfe is a Partner at Odgers Berndtson Luxembourg office. He chairs the Financial Services & CEO Practice, with an important accent on leadership of tomorrow and ESG areas.

Robert has more than 30 years of experience and is a recognised expert in Banking, International Capital Markets, Asset Management and Investment Funds. He also initiated the creation of the Luxembourg Green Exchange, the world’s first and leading exchange platform dedicated entirely to sustainable financial products.

Before joining Odgers Berndtson, Robert was the CEO at the Luxembourg Stock Exchange for nine years, a Member of the Management Board of BGL BNP Paribas in Luxembourg before and had assumed senior responsibilities within Fortis Bank in the areas of Institutional Banking and Global Markets.

Robert chairs the Governance and Nomination Committee of the World Federation of Exchanges and he was a member of the Board of directors of the Federation of European Securities Exchanges.

He holds a Master’s Degree in Economics from the University of Nancy and he is an alumnus of Insead and Stanford Graduate School of Business. Robert is Luxembourgish and speaks fluent German, French and English.

Prof. Edward Scicluna

Governor, Central Bank of Malta

Edward Scicluna is Governor of the Central Bank of Malta and Deputy Chairman of the Malta Financial Services Authority, after having served as Malta’s Minister for Finance (2013-2020).  He also served as an MEP and Vice-Charmain of ECON (2008-2013). His previous appointments included that of Professor and Head of the Department of Economics at the University of Malta (UoM), and Chairman of the Malta Council for Economic and Social Development.  Edward graduated from the University of Oxford with a Diploma with distinction in politics and economics; from the UoM with a First Class Honours BA degree. He  read for his  Masters and Doctorate in Economics at the University of Toronto.


Mary Anne Scicluna

Senior Executive Director, Supervision Financial Services Regulatory Authority, Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM)

MaryAnne Scicluna is the Senior Executive Director of Supervision Division at the Financial Services Authority in Abu Dhabi Global Market. Ms Scicluna has a long experience in regulation spanning more than 26 years. She has worked extensively in various aspects of the regulatory ambit covering authorisations, supervision, enforcement and policy primarily within a European regulatory framework. Before joining the FSRA in ADGM, she sat on the Boards of the European Authorities (ESMA, EBA, EIOPA).

Tarik Senhaji

Chief Executive Officer, Bourse de Casablanca

Mr. Tarik SENHAJI is the Chief Executive Officer of Bourse de Casablanca (Casablanca stock exchange). He graduated from Ecole Polytechnique de Paris and the National School of Statistics and Economic Administration (ENSAE) in Paris. He began his career as a Financial Officer at the International Finance Corporation (World Bank Group) in Washington DC, before moving to London where he held various management positions in capital markets at Société Générale, Dresdner Kleinwort Benson, Calyon CIB and Natixis CIB.

Mr. Tarik SENHAJI has accumulated over 25 years of experience in the financial sector on the Moroccan and international markets. Before his new position as CEO of Bourse de Casablanca, he was Managing Director of Ithmar Capital, the Moroccan strategic investment fund.

Dr Yazid M. Sharaiha

Global Head of Systematic Strategies, Norges Bank Investment Management

Yazid Sharaiha is the Global Head of Systematic Strategies, Norges Bank Investment Management, the firm responsible for the management of the Norwegian Government Pensions Fund Global. He joined the Fund in 2012 and is responsible for innovation in portfolio and trading strategies and advancing asset manager’s perspectives through research, analytics and publications. His current industry and research interests are in the areas of systematic/quantitative investing, risk management and optimal execution strategies.

His career spans both academia and industry. Prior to his current role, he was Managing Director and Global Head of Quantitative and Derivative Strategies at Morgan Stanley. He was previously a University Lecturer in Information Management at Imperial College Business School. He has published numerous academic and industry articles in the fields of Operations Research, Quantitative Finance, Asset Allocation and Market Structure.

Yazid holds a BSc in Engineering from Imperial College London (1st Class Hon), Masters’ degrees in Engineering (UC Berkeley), Management Science (Imperial College) and Politics (School of Oriental and African Studies), and a PhD in Operations Research from Imperial College, London.


Tajinder  Singh

Deputy Secretary General, International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO)

Tajinder Singh joined the IOSCO General Secretariat in January 2010 as Deputy Secretary General. He was previously Head of International Affairs & Human Resource Development and Advisor to the Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI). Mr. Singh comes from the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) and has held various positions in the Ministry of Finance in the Government of India, as well as handling a number of assignments for the government in the financial and other sectors. He has 30 years of experience at senior leadership positions in different organizations dealing with strategic issues in regulation, finance and administration, and significant domestic and international experience dealing with Government and regulators. 

Mr. Singh holds a Masters Degree in Systems Science and Automation from the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore, and graduated in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kanpur.

Nandini Sukumar

Chief Executive Officer, The World Federation of Exchanges

Nandini Sukumar is the Chief Executive Officer of the World Federation of Exchanges, the global association for exchanges and CCPs. The WFE represents more than 250 exchanges and clearing houses globally, educating stakeholders on the vital role played by market infrastructures in the real economy and as a standard setter, finding the consensus on issues among the global membership. Of its members, 35% are in Asia-Pacific, 45% in EMEA and 20% in the Americas. WFE exchanges are home to 47,919 listed companies, and the market capitalisation of these entities is over $109 trillion; around $137 trillion (EOB) in trading annually passes through WFE members (at end 2020). WFE’s 57 member CCPs collectively ensure that risk takers post some $800bn (equivalent) of resources to back their positions, in the form of initial margin and default fund requirements. Ms. Sukumar is Vice Chair of IOSCO’s Affiliate Members Consultative Committee and Chair of the AMCC’s Sustainability Taskforce.

Edward T. Tilly

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Cboe Global Markets, and Chairman, The World Federation of Exchanges

Edward Tilly is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Cboe Global Markets, Inc. (Cboe), one of the world’s largest exchange holding companies. Mr. Tilly, who has been CEO since 2013, was elected to serve in the additional role of Chairman of the Board in 2017 as part of the Bats Global Markets acquisition, and later added President to his title in January 2019.

Under Mr. Tilly’s leadership, Cboe has expanded its role as a market leader in providing cutting-edge trading and investment solutions to investors around the world. Mr. Tilly led the $3.2 billion acquisition of Bats Global Markets, which was completed on February 28, 2017. As a result, Cboe offers trading across a diverse range of products in multiple asset classes and geographies, including options, futures, U.S. and European equities, exchange-traded products (ETPs), global foreign exchange (FX) and multi-asset volatility products based on the Cboe Volatility Index (VIX Index), the world’s barometer for equity market volatility.

Mr. Tilly has expanded global access to Cboe's flagship products, S&P 500 Index (SPX) options and Cboe Volatility Index (VIX) options and futures, through the launch of global trading hours. He secured exclusive licensing agreements with major global index providers FTSE Russell and MSCI, and launched products that added a significant international dimension to Cboe's index option franchise.

He also forged a number of strategic alliances in an effort to further diversify the company's product and business lines. Through equity investments in CurveGlobal, Eris Exchange, American Financial Exchange and Vest Financial, Cboe is tapping into new market segments and reaching new customers. Mr. Tilly also led the acquisition of Livevol, Inc., a leading provider of options technology and trading analytics, to enhance Cboe's market data services offering.

Mr. Tilly has been an integral part of the Cboe community, as both a trader and exchange executive, for 30 years. Prior to being named CEO, Mr. Tilly was Cboe President and Chief Operating Officer from 2011 to 2013, served as Cboe Executive Vice Chairman from 2006 to 2011 and held the highest member-elected position at the Exchange as Cboe’s Member Vice Chairman from 2004 to 2006.

Mr. Tilly came to Cboe as a trading floor clerk in 1987 and became a floor trader and Cboe member in 1989. He traded as both a market-maker and a designated primary market-maker (DPM) until joining Cboe’s executive management team in 2006. As a Cboe member, Mr. Tilly served on the Cboe Board of Directors from 1998 to 2000 and again from 2003 to 2006. He chaired the Cboe Floor Directors Committee from 2004 to 2006 and served on the Executive, Compensation and Governance Committees of the Board.

Mr. Tilly currently serves on the board of directors for Cboe Global Markets, Cboe Futures Exchange (CFE), Northwestern Medical Group, World Business Chicago, Working in the Schools, and the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE), where he serves as Vice Chairman of the Board. Mr. Tilly is a member of the Economic Club of Chicago and the Chicago Club.

He received a B.A. degree in Economics from Northwestern University.

Jason Warr

Global Co-Head of ETF Markets, BlackRock

Jason is a Managing Director and Global Co-Head of ETF Markets. The ETF Markets encompasses the Global Markets and Product Engineering teams within EII Markets and Investments ("Engine") of BlackRock's ETF and Index Investing (EII) organization. The EII Markets and Investments teams drive investment integrity and market quality in Blackrock's ETF and index portfolios. Global Markets and Product Engineering together strive to safeguard ETF trading, evolve the ETF ecosystem and develop best-in-class products with enduring integrity that promote clients' financial well-being. Prior to joining Blackrock in September 2016, Jason spent the previous 15 years at Morgan Stanley in a variety of Delta One trading roles including Cash, Swaps and Futures. Most recently Jason was Head of European ETF Trading at Morgan Stanley and responsible for managing the revenue, technology and client relationships of the European franchise.

Greg Wojciechowski

President & CEO, Bermuda Stock Exchange

Simon Zammit

Chief Executive Officer, Malta Stock Exchange

Simon Zammit is CEO of Malta Stock Exchange, and joined back in 1991 when the exchange was being set up. Over the years he has managed various departments including the Central Securities Depository, Data Operations and IT, and spearheaded a number of the exchange’s major projects, including the implementation of various electronic and remote trading systems. Simon is a Member of the Institute for the Management of Information Systems, and holds an MBA from Henley Management College.

Dr James Zhan

Senior Director, Investment and Enterprise, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD)

Dr James Zhan is senior director of investment and enterprise at the United Nations Organization on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). He is editor-in-chief of the World Investment Report and the Transnational Corporations journal. He chairs the Governing Board of the UN Sustainable Stock Exchanges (SSE) Initiative, with all major stock exchanges worldwide as partners. He also co-chairs the Executive Board of UN Family Business for Sustainable Development Initiative (in partnership with FBNi); as well as co-chairs the Global Alliance of Special Economic Zones. He has provided policy advice to numerous governments (including heads of states and cabinets) and parliaments, and to global summits (e.g. G20, BRICS). He led the formulation of global guidelines for a new generation of investment policies used in over 130 countries. He created the World Investment Forum in 2008 and has led it to become the largest and most prominent global platform for the investment and development stakeholders worldwide. He is chief strategist for the World Association of Investment Promotion Agencies, and Global Agenda Council member of the World Economic Forum. He has held several advisory positions in academic institutions, including at Cambridge University, Columbia University, Cornell University and Oxford University. He has extensive publications on investment, trade and technology related economic and legal issues.