Our Team

Pekin Hardy Strauss is a research-driven boutique wealth management firm that provides customized portfolio management services and personal financial advice.

Our Investment Team

 

Pekin Hardy Strauss is a research and asset investment-driven firm in Chicago, with six CFA charterholders on the investment team. Our experienced investment professionals are analytical, contrarian, value-oriented, independent, and intellectually honest.

 

Matt Blume, CFA

Matt Blume, CFA

Portfolio Manager and Director of ESG Research

Matt is a portfolio manager of private client accounts at Pekin Hardy, and he also manages the firm’s shareholder activism efforts. Prior to joining the firm, Matt was an investment advisor for Cornerstone Asset Management. He earned a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Valparaiso University and an MBA at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.

Brandon Hardy

Brandon Hardy

SVP & Portfolio Manager

A shareholder of the firm, Brandon is a Senior Vice President and portfolio manager of private client accounts. Brandon joined Pekin Hardy in 1997 and has been managing client portfolios since 2000. Prior to joining the firm, Brandon worked in the trust services department at Northern Trust. Brandon received a BS in Finance at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.

Erin Kelsey

Erin Kelsey

Financial Planner

Prior to joining Pekin Hardy as a financial planner, Erin spent six years working in nonprofit philanthropy, raising funds for arts and environmental organizations in Chicago. She earned a BA and an MBA from the University of Chicago and is currently pursuing her CFP® certification. Erin is a long-time Chicagoan and lives in the Logan Square neighborhood. In her free time, she runs, cooks elaborate meals, volunteers with Booth and a women’s health organization, and explores new restaurants.

Alexander Kuznetsov, CFA

Alexander Kuznetsov, CFA

Research Analyst

Prior to joining the firm in 2016, Alex worked as a VP of investment banking services in Kazakhstan at Aton, one of the oldest investment groups in Russia. Prior to that, he worked in corporate finance at Samruk-Kazyna, the sovereign wealth fund of Kazakhstan. Alex began his career at Renaissance Capital, a leading emerging markets investment bank, in 2008. He earned a BBA from the American University of Central Asia and an MBA from University of Chicago.

Bill Pekin, CFA

Bill Pekin, CFA

SVP & Portfolio Manager

A shareholder of the firm, Bill is a Senior Vice President and portfolio manager. Bill has been managing money for Pekin Hardy clients since joining the firm in 2001, and he is also a portfolio manager of Appleseed Fund. Prior to joining the firm, Bill worked in investment banking and research analysis at Credit Suisse in Chicago and at Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette (DLJ) in New York. He earned a BA from Haverford College and an MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

Shaun Roach, CFA

Shaun Roach, CFA

Assistant Portfolio Manager

Prior to joining the advisor in 2014, Shaun spent five years at Deloitte Financial Advisory Services assisting clients with valuation needs related to financial reporting, tax compliance, and strategic planning.  Shaun began his career at Deloitte Consulting as an actuarial consultant. He received a B.S. in Actuarial Science and Finance from the University of Illinois in May 2005 and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

Adam Strauss, CFA

Adam Strauss, CFA

Co-Chief Executive Officer & Portfolio Manager

A shareholder of the firm, Adam has been managing money for Pekin Hardy clients since joining the firm in 2004, and he is a portfolio manager of Appleseed Fund. Prior to joining the firm, Adam served on the management teams of EquipNet, a business services company, and Frontier Co-op, a natural products company. Adam began his career as a management consultant, working for Gemini Consulting and Andersen Consulting. Adam received his BA and MBA degrees from Stanford University.

Joshua Strauss, CFA

Joshua Strauss, CFA

Co-Chief Executive Officer & Portfolio Manager

A shareholder of the firm, Joshua has been managing money for Pekin Hardy clients since joining the firm in 2004, and he is a portfolio manager of Appleseed Fund. Prior to joining the firm, Josh held positions in research analysis and business development, including as Director of Business Development at Color Kinetics and a role as a Research Analyst at Shearman & Sterling. Josh earned a B.A. in Foreign Affairs from the University of Virginia and an MBA from the University of Michigan.

Business Operations and Compliance

Troy Cam

Troy Cam

Head Trader

Prior to joining the firm in 2013, Troy worked as a trader and in portfolio analysis. His prior roles include Head Trader at Mid-Continent Capital LLC in Chicago and Portfolio Analyst at Franklin Templeton. Troy has a B.S in Mechanical Engineering from Kettering University and an MBA from the Monterey Institute of International Studies.

Pamela Drella

Pamela Drella

Operations Manager

Prior to joining the firm, Pam gained over 20 years of experience in the investment industry with a registered investment advisor in the Chicago suburbs. Her experience includes client service, operations, management and accounting at the portfolio, partnership and corporate levels. Pam holds a B.S. degree in Organizational Management from Illinois State University. She also holds the Chartered Mutual Fund Counselor designation from the College for Financial Planning.
Jennifer Dunlap

Jennifer Dunlap

Chief Compliance Officer

Prior to joining the firm in 2012, Jennifer worked in financial service roles across risk, operations and management. Her prior roles include Senior Director, Head of Member Services for The New Orleans Exchange, and Manager, Client Support Team serving institutional clients while at Morningstar Inc. Jennifer received a B.A. in Sociology with a Law concentration from DePaul University, and an MBA in Finance and International Business from Loyola University, Graduate School of Business.

Sheri Jones

Sheri Jones

Client Service Associate

Prior to joining Pekin Hardy Strauss, Sheri worked in marketing and client services for a London-based investment manager. She received a B.S. in Business Administration at Illinois State University and a M.A. in Arts Administration at University of Illinois at Springfield.

Alexis Lerma

Alexis Lerma

Client Service & Compliance Associate

Prior to joining Pekin Hardy Strauss as  a client service and compliance associate, Alexis worked as a revenue analyst at Marsh & McLennan. She began her career at Northern Trust as an accounting analyst and moved into investor services within the Hedge Fund Services division. Alexis also completed an internship at Walt Disney World Resorts in Orlando, Florida. She earned her B.S. in Finance from University of Illinois at Chicago and MBA from DePaul University. 

Karen Pratt

Karen Pratt

Office Manager & Client Service Associate

Prior to joining Pekin Hardy Strauss in 2005, Karen worked in various client service and executive administrative functions. Prior roles include Executive Administrative Assistant at Lincoln Equity Management and Office Manager at Chase Supply Company. She received her AAS degree from Robert Morris College.

Colin Rennich, CFP

Colin Rennich, CFP

Senior Vice President

As Director of Sales, Colin is responsible for marketing the Appleseed Fund and additional products to the institutional marketplace. Prior to joining Pekin Hardy in 2012, Colin worked in institutional sales at Principal Financial Group. Colin began his career in the securities industry at Ameriprise Financial as an investment advisor. He earned his B.S. in business management at Purdue University and holds a FINRA Series 7 Certificate. Check Colin’s background on FINRA’s BrokerCheck

Annie Rijks

Annie Rijks

Associate Advisor

Annie joined the firm in 2008 and is currently a Trader, Portfolio Accountant, and investment support analyst. Prior to joining Pekin Hardy Strauss, she worked in film production at the Goodman Theater in Chicago and was an Improviser for ComedySportz. She received a BA degree in Theater from the College of Santa Fe.

Kathleen Siojo

Kathleen Siojo

Senior Client Service Associate

Kathleen began her career in retail banking at Wells Fargo where she focused on assisting high-value consumer and business clients. Throughout her career, she served as a business advocate and uncovered sales opportunities.  In 2016, Kathleen transitioned into the Client Services role at TD Ameritrade where she assisted in day-to-day operations. Kathleen earned a BBA in Finance from the University of Houston and is currently an active volunteer with Junior Achievement of Chicago.

Contact

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APPLESEED FUND DISCLOSURE

You should carefully consider the investment objectives, potential risks, management fees, and charges and expenses of the Fund before investing. The Fund’s prospectus contains this and other information about the Fund, and should be read carefully before investing. You may obtain a current copy of the Fund’s prospectus by calling 1-800-470-1029.

There is no guarantee that the vehicles presented will succeed; and investment results may vary. Bonds are affected by a number of risks, including fluctuations in interest rates, credit risk, and prepayment risk. Alternative Private Investments, such as REIT’s and real-estate related securities involve special risks. such as limited liquidity and interest rates risk. Investors in alternative investments should bear in mind that these products can be highly speculative and may not be suitable for all clients. Investments in commodities may be affected by overall market movements, changes in interest rates, and other factors, such as weather disease, embargoes, and international economic and political developments.

The Fund’s past performance does not guarantee future results. The investment return and principal value of an investment in the Fund will fluctuate so that an investor’s shares, when redeemed, may be worth more or less than their original cost. Current performance of the Fund may be lower or higher than the performance quoted. Performance data current to the most recent month end may be obtained by calling 1-800-470-1029.

The Fund is managed by Pekin Hardy Strauss Inc. an SEC registered investment firm dedicated to value investing. For more information, visit www.appleseedfund.com.

The Appleseed Fund is distributed by Ultimus Fund Distributors, LLC (member FINRA)

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