Team

Experts in Machine Learning and Financial Services

Our seasoned technology experts bring extensive domain expertise in machine learning, mathematical modeling, and optimization in the asset management industry.

We have successfully built award-winning systems, models, engines, and processes that underpin the high-performance mechanics of portfolio management.

 After holding a variety of leadership roles in asset management and software development, we collectively understand in depth the challenges of portfolio management that led us to develop our premier software solutions and computing platform.

Company Values

Our company values are the foundation for everything we do.

  • Knowledge – We incorporate verifiable data and quantifiable evidence into our product development. 
  • Ingenuity – We embrace creative solutions in overcoming challenges, while being masters of legacy systems and methods.
  • Tenacity – We face our challenges head on and with determination.

Our team brings a drive for performance, learning and service excellence. We look forward to working with you.

Team

Heather Claus

Heather Claus

Heather Claus, Co-Founder and CEO has 25 years of experience in large scale software deployment and consulting. Projects have encompassed software development and implementation in asset management for fixed income, equity long only and long short portfolios.  She has also provided consulting to government and private businesses on market dynamics, systems research, and software deployment. Heather is instrumental in guiding the company during its growth and development stages.

James Claus, PhD

James Claus, PhD

James Claus, PhD, Co-Founder and CTO has always been innovative in his use of technology and has pushed the bounds of computing possibilities for research and trading of publicly traded companies.  He was recruited to Columbia University to pursue his doctorate degree and after he completed his doctorate, he was recruited to innovate and transform the legacy systems at Barclay’s Global Investors (now Blackrock Scientific). James has continued to develop and further refine his ideas and technology in academic and industry settings.  In James’ Computational Finance Lab at the University of Utah, James began his work combining advances in machine learning, optimization, and a computing architecture that produce results that are hundreds of times faster and more cost-effective than generic cloud solutions.  This work has been improved and commercialized in Flex Axion.

Hal Tolley

Hal Tolley

Hal Tolley is Co-Founder and Head of Engineering and has worked with James previously in both business and academia. He has been the lead engineer on numerous large scale computing projects for both the government and private businesses including the NSA and Vhayu, a trading platform startup sold to Thomson Reuters. He is a full stack engineer as well as a hardware/software expert who is the authority on solving I/O bottlenecks and improving performance of Flex Axion’s software as well as refining the optimization engine. When at the University of Utah, Hal built the original hardware prototypes and is the architect of the proprietary computing architecture that underpins Flex Axion’s powerful software performance.

Advisors

Russell M. Parker, CIMA®

Russell M. Parker, CIMA®

Russell helped some of the biggest names in financial services build market presence, grow distribution, and drive profitable results. Firms including Citibank, Nuveen (now subsidiary of TIAA), Janus (now Janus Henderson), Natixis, and others have been beneficiaries of his innovative ideas and forward thinking, along with a better bottom-line. Strong management experience taught Russell to think and plan like a CEO, be creative like a CMO and watch the bottom line like a CFO.

Russell founded rpmAUM® to provide advice and counsel on product, brand, distribution, and strategic partnership services to the leadership of asset management firms and to offer unconventional ideas and non-traditional distribution methods to their asset gathering efforts. rpmAUM® was built to provide creativity, innovative solutions, and informed opinions to help clients achieve accelerated growth and outwit the status quo.

Since inception in 2013, Russell has guided rpmAUM to assemble a talented team of former C-suite professionals that now service an ever-increasing swath of project work across corporate assignments impacting from $200 Million to over $2 Trillion in assets under management.

Since 2015, Russell has been instrumental to RetireOne, a FinTech company with disruptive, new age solutions for guaranteed retirement income.  He serves as Vice Chairman of the Board for RetireOne and he and his colleagues are building better insurance-based choices for retirement income, that benefit consumers, asset managers, and fee-based advisors.

Russell attributes much of his success in the financial industry to a foundation in consumer package goods sales and marketing. His experience leading brand management and distribution at Procter & Gamble taught him how to best put products and services within an arm’s reach of desire. An important complement to his CPG success, Russell co-founded a Citibank funded database marketing firm and leveraged efficient and effective target marketing and building brand equity techniques with many of the largest global franchises.

Russell has been an active volunteer for many years with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and currently serves on the national board. A graduate of Villanova University, Russell completed post-graduate programs at both Kellogg and Wharton Schools of Management. He holds Series 7, 26, and 63 licenses as well as the CIMA® designation.

Sean Bird, PhD

Sean Bird, PhD

Sean Bird, PhD is a career technology professional in the Pacific Northwest specializing in technology innovation. He has a doctorate in Quantitative Systems specializing in artificial intelligence and industrial engineering. His career includes founding and building three technology businesses, consulting to Fortune 100 organizations on technology strategy, products and services, advising numerous technology startups, and leadership roles at Microsoft and Ernst & Young/Cap Gemini. Sean lives in the Seattle area with his wife and two sons where he enjoys hiking and skiing, as well as coaching, refereeing and supporting youth sports.

Frank Vallario

Frank Vallario

Frank Vallario is the Chief Investment Officer for ETF Managers Group (ETFMG). He is responsible for the portfolio construction, trading, risk management and portfolio analysis processes associated with ETF strategies. Before his current role at ETFMG, Frank has had a variety of senior roles over his 25-year career in financial services.

Before joining ETF Managers Group, Frank was with OppenheimerFunds where he was Head of Equity Portfolio Management for the Firm’s Smart Beta ETFs (Invesco acquired OppenheimerFunds in May 2019). His role before joining OppenheimerFunds in 2017 was a Senior Portfolio Manager at ColumbiaThreadneedle where he was responsible for the day to day management of the firm’s ETF business, which was acquired from his previous firm, Emerging Global Advisors (EGA). Prior to that, he was relationship manager at MSCI responsible for providing investment solutions to complex problems using MSCI Barra’s fundamental models and portfolio construction tools. Previously, Frank was a partner in a start-up asset management firm where he served as the director of portfolio management. Frank began his career at UBS Global Asset Management where he spent over a decade in various quantitative portfolio management equity roles including equity market neutral, tactical asset allocation, structured active equities, enhanced index, passive management and factor research.

Frank serves on the Investment Committee for the Girl Scouts of Connecticut and is an University Affiliate at the University of Utah – David Eccles School of Business. He received a B.S. in Finance from Lehigh University and a M.B.A. with a concentration in Finance from Rutgers University.