Management Team

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Joseph F.  Hunter, President and Chief Executive Officer
Joseph joins EQIS as a Senior Financial Services Executive with deep and broad-based experience in correspondent clearing, self-clearing & fully disclosed operations. Joseph has extensive management experience in both product and project development, Section 16 /20 firm development, and Managed account clearing operations. Joseph is adept in personnel management, as well as Retail/Institutional Trading operations, and Call Center management expertise. He is a proven Project/Program manager and a recognized innovator of brokerage/RIA evolutional changes.

Joseph’s industry experience includes; President, Financial Services International Corp – a FINRA/SEC registered Broker Dealer, Senior Vice President, Broker Dealer Operations, Curian Capital, Senior Vice President, Correspondent Implementations, National Financial/Fidelity Investments, and Senior Vice President, Broker Dealer Operations Executive, Banc of America Investments.

Joseph holds the FINRA Series 7, 9, 10, 24, 27, 53, 63 registrations and is a graduate of the University Of Washington’s Pacific Coast Banking School, in Seattle, Washington.


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Joel Bennett, Acting Chief Investment Officer
Joel is a 15-year veteran of the financial services industry. He has worked for T. Rowe Price, JP Morgan Chase, and AssetMark. As a consultant and partner to hundreds of financial advisors, Joel has helped independent advisors raise over a billion dollars in assets under management. His key areas of expertise are practice management, client relationship management, business development, and investment strategy. Joel received a BA in finance and economics from Western Michigan University.


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Kenneth Kim, PhD, Chief Economist, Chief Financial Strategist
Ken began his career in finance more than 20 years ago as a research assistant at the PACAP Research Center in Rhode Island. He has worked as a senior financial economist at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, as a consultant for the CFA Institute, as a special consultant for the Securities Litigation Consulting Group and as an academic consultant for the Kuala Lumpur Stock Exchange. He is also a highly accomplished finance scholar and professor of financial strategy, investments, portfolio theory, derivative securities, business economics, and financial risk management. He has held academic appointments at 16 different universities around the world and has served on the board of directors of multiple academic organizations.

His research has been widely-published in peer-reviewed journals, and he has been cited or quoted in the likes of the Wall Street Journal, the Financial Times, BusinessWeek, Barron’s, The New York Times and many more. Ken is also a Forbes contributing columnist.

He is a frequent speaker at conferences, corporate trainings and executive development programs. He holds a PhD from the University of Rhode Island, an MBA from the University of Detroit and a BA from the University of Michigan.  Ken also maintains his Series 65 securities license.


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Jonathan Shiffer, Head of Portfolio Management and Director of Research
Jonathan will serve as Head of Portfolio Management and Director of Research, leading EQIS manager research and portfolio construction. Prior to joining EQIS, Jonathan was founder, Chief Investment Officer of Journey Capital Advisers, a multi asset class investment management company. He was Head of Portfolio Management / Portfolio Manager with Curian Capital LLC, managing in excess of $21 billion. Previously, Jonathan was Chief Investment Officer of a multi-billion dollar institutional investment management firm in Dallas, TX. Jonathan holds a Master of Business Administration from the University of Texas at Dallas, with additional studies towards a PhD.  With almost 20 years of experience in managing for direct investment and asset allocation funds, he is an expert in capital management.


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Marc van Rijssen, VP, Head of Trading
Marc has been working in the financial services industry since 1999. He earned his B.A. in mathematics from Hobart College (NY) and holds FINRA Series 7, 24, 55, and 63 licenses. Marc has progressive experience in broker/dealer and trading operations within start-ups and multi-billion dollar organizations. He has demonstrated ability to streamline business operations that drive growth and increase efficiency. He has strong qualifications in developing and implementing controls and processes in addition to productivity improvements and change management. He possesses solid leadership communication and interpersonal skills to establish rapport with all levels of staff and management.

Marc was previously a VP, Head Trader at Curian Capital where he oversaw all aspects of trading.


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Mark G. Thompson, Chief Financial Officer
Mark is a senior technology industry finance executive with over 25 years in finance including more than 16 years as CFO. He is responsible for EQIS’s financial management functions, including financial reporting, tax, audit, treasury, human resources, corporate development and investor relations. Prior to joining EQIS, he held senior positions at both large and small companies, public and private. He has served as CFO while taking a company public in the U.S. through SEC form S-1 registration, as well as serving as CFO of two other public companies. His background also includes CFO experience at leading Silicon Valley-based venture capital firms.

Mark’s finance specialties include: capital market transactions, private and public equity and debt markets, corporate finance and HR management, investor relations, mergers & acquisitions, business plan development, limited partnership finance, and risk management.

Mark is a graduate of Texas A&M University, B.S. in Electrical Engineering, with an MBA from the Haas School at University of California, Berkeley.


Jason Luhan, Chief Legal Officer & Chief Compliance Officer
Jason joined EQIS in 2015 as Chief Compliance Officer and Senior Legal Counsel to ensure that EQIS maintains a comprehensive compliance position relative to the ever-changing regulatory climate of the financial industry. His experience also brings to EQIS a comprehensive view of the workings and interplay of SEC registered investment advisers and FINRA member broker-dealers.

Prior to joining EQIS, Jason held hybrid roles within the financial services community blending his knowledge of law and regulations with the operational needs of the enterprise. Jason has served as Chief Operations Officer and General Counsel to a national broker dealer where he oversaw the daily activity of the firm’s departments and the defense of claims brought against the firm relevant to FINRA arbitration and/or state actions. In his dual roles, Jason was responsible for the review and interpretation of regulatory changes and general legal matters affecting the securities industry and the firm. Jason has also held the role of SVP, Managing Director of an SEC registered RIA with over 300 investment adviser representatives. As managing director, he instilled work-flow efficiencies and increased revenues, as well as increasing adviser adoption of the advisory platform.

Jason obtained a B.A. in Business Administration from the University of San Diego and his Juris Doctor from the Kennedy School of Law at Chapman University. While in law school, he worked as an international specialist for a boutique business bank in Los Angeles and as a judicial extern to the Honorable Theodore Albert, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Central District of California.

Jason holds his series 66 and held FINRA 7, 99, 53 and 24 licenses, is a Real Estate Broker registered with the California Bureau of Real Estate, and is admitted to the California Bar.


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Tim Parkinson, Chief Distribution Officer
Tim brings nearly three decades’ experience in financial services sales/distribution leadership. Previously, Tim was a Divisional Vice President with Curian Capital  LLC, where he was recognized for key recruitment, development, and leadership of 23 award-winning consultative sales professionals for Curian's $12B TAMP platform.  Additionally, Tim assisted independent advisers with practice management, analysis, and valuation,  as well as customized marketing and distribution strategies.  In prior roles as Regional Vice President and Vice President at The WM Group, Bear Stearns, and Fortis Investors, Tim led multiple territories to top-performing  status in Variable Annuity, Variable Life, Mutual Fund, Separate Account, and Third-Party-Platform sales through both independent and wirehouse channels.  Tim has delivered thousands of client, adviser, and industry conference presentations on topics ranging from current capital market perspectives to performance attribution to behavioral psychology and finance.   Tim is a graduate of the University of Utah with a BA in Mass Communications/Public Relations and minor in Economics, and has held FINRA Series 24, 7, 63, and 65 licenses. 


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Kari Franz, SVP Marketing
Kari has more than 25 years of marketing experience focused in the financial services industry and digital marketing. Before joining EQIS, Kari was responsible for mutual fund and ETF marketing at Charles Schwab representing $1.3 trillion in assets under management.  While at Russell Investments, she was responsible for launching and marketing 26 ETF funds.  Additionally, during her tenure at Discover Card Kari acquired 3.2 million new cardmembers annually. Ms. Franz earned her MBA from DePaul University and a Bachelors of Science in marketing from Northern Illinois University. 


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Lisa M. Curran, Chief Administrative Officer
With over twenty years in the financial services industry, Lisa brings broad experience in all aspects of business operations.  She specializes in integrating technology to support business processes and has in-depth experience directing strategic planning efforts to achieve business goals, successfully managing multiple cross-functional teams to guide projects to completion.  Before joining EQIS, Lisa was Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer for Financial Services International Corporation.  In addition to serving as an independent business consultant for many years, Lisa’s previous roles include AVP of Operations for Curian Clearing LLC, and Compliance Officer, VP of Technology for Diablo Funding Group.  Lisa holds FINRA Series 7 and 24 licenses.


Vanessa Knightly, Director of Operations
Vanessa joins EQIS with more than a decade of financial services experience.  She began her career at Woodbury Financial Services as a successful financial advisor.  She most recently served in several leadership roles for Assetmark, ranging from trading, operations, and the customer experience. Vanessa has a passion for process improvement, which has resulted in saving over 100 hours and making teams more efficient.  Vanessa received a BA in Business Administration from St. Mary’s College of California.  She enjoys running half marathons, painting and spending time with her family.


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Nikki Jagdman, Internal Sales Manager
Nikki began her career at EQIS in Operations and has been promoted many times to meet the growing needs of the organization. Nikki  quickly became an Internal Business Consultant (IBC) partnering with financial advisors to build their business. Leveraging her skills as and IBC, Nikki then assumed the role of National Training Manager. Most recently, she was promoted to Internal Sales Manager overseeing all the IBCs.