SIFMA’s leadership brings together a diversity of expertise from both the private and public sectors.
Kenneth E. Bentsen, Jr.
President and CEO
Mr. Bentsen is President and CEO of SIFMA. Mr. Bentsen is also Chairman of Engage China, a coalition of 12 U.S. financial services trade associations united in support of high-level engagement with China. Previously, Mr. Bentsen served as President, and earlier as the Executive Vice President of Public Policy and Advocacy for SIFMA, responsible for SIFMA’s legal, regulatory, and legislative affairs and advocacy initiatives. Mr. Bentsen has also served as CEO of the Global Financial Markets Association (GFMA), SIFMA’s global affiliate.
Prior to joining SIFMA, Mr. Bentsen was president of the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA), where he led the 700-member financia services trade association representing commercial and investment banks, financial services companies and manufacturers in the commercial finance sector. From 2003 to 2006, Mr. Bentsen was a Managing Director at Public Strategies, Inc. where he was a strategic and management consultant principally to the firm’s financial services clients.
From 1995 to 2003, Mr. Bentsen served as a Member of the United States House of Representatives from Texas, where he sat on the House Financial Services Committee (and its predecessor House Banking and Financial Services Committee), and separately on the House Budget Committee. Mr. Bentsen was an active participant in the drafting and enactment of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act and the Commodities Futures Modernization Act. During his tenure in the Congress, he played an active role in legislation and oversight of regulations affecting bank and thrift charters, federal deposit insurance, securities law, derivatives, and the federal government sponsored enterprises (Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the FHLB system). Mr. Bentsen was also instrumental in the passage of the landmark Balanced Budget Act of 1997, particularly with respect to health care policy.
Prior to his service in Congress, Mr. Bentsen was an investment banker at George K. Baum & Co. and previously Drexel, Burnham Lambert, Inc., where he specialized in municipal and mortgage finance.
Mr. Bentsen is a Trustee of the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden of the Smithsonian Institution, the Bryce Harlow Foundation and the Center for Congressional and Political Studies at the American University. He also serves on the boards of the United States Capitol Historical Society and the Committee on Capital Markets Regulation.
Mr. Bentsen has a B.A. from the University of St. Thomas and an M.P.A. from American University.
Executive Vice President, Public Policy & Advocacy
Mr. Blocker is the Executive Vice President of Public Policy & Advocacy for SIFMA. In this capacity, Mr. Blocker leads a team who engage with lawmakers and regulators on international, federal and state issues impacting the financial services industry.
Prior to joining SIFMA, Mr. Blocker was Managing Director, Federal Affairs Manager in the U.S. Office of Public Policy at UBS. Mr. Blocker represented UBS on a wide range of issues with a primary focus on banking, securities, and other financial services issues on Capitol Hill and in the Executive Branch. In particular, he was the lead lobbyist on financial services issues for UBS during both the legislative debate and the regulatory implementation of Dodd-Frank. In addition, Andy served as a trusted resource to inform both individual and institutional clients on political and policy actions in Washington and how they could impact their strategic investment decisions.
Prior to his role at UBS, Mr. Blocker was Vice President of Government Relations at the New York Stock Exchange (now NYSE Euronext), where he was responsible for developing and coordinating lobbying strategy regarding market structure (including Reg NMS), corporate governance, international market collaboration, and tax issues. Prior to joining the Exchange, Andy represented American Airlines in over twenty international route negotiations between the U.S. and foreign governments, and worked to secure liability relief as part of the Air Transportation Safety and System Stabilization Act post September 11th.
During his tenure in the public sector, he worked as Legislative Assistant to Congressman Martin Frost (D-TX), and Senior Budget Analyst for the Senate Budget Committee. He also worked for the Clinton White House, where as Special Assistant to the President for Legislative Affairs, he provided policy-making and strategic advice to the President, and contributed to the passage of the 1997 Bipartisan Balanced Budget Agreement.
Mr. Blocker holds an undergraduate degree in Economics from Harvard University and an MBA from Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business.
Executive Vice President, Head of Conferences and Events
Mr. Chiarelli is Executive Vice President, Head of Conferences and Events at SIFMA. He brings nearly 15 years of experience in meetings and event management, sales, sponsorships, marketing and brand development. Additionally, he is responsible for SIFMA’s Societies functions.
Prior to joining SIFMA, Mr. Chiarelli served as Conference Director for The Risk and Insurance Management Society (RIMS), managing and leading educational development efforts of the organization’s events division and user pay offerings, which included a 12,000+ citywide conference and convention for risk management and commercial insurance professionals.
Before joining RIMS, Mr. Chairelli was a Program Event Manager for Microsoft’s US-NY Region overseeing the production and launch of the Office XP, Window, XP, Xbox and Pocket, PC worldwide launch events.
Prior to positions in the conference and convention industry, Mr. Chiarelli was Vice President, Commercial Lending in middle market banking divisions at Chemical Bank, NatWest and Fleet Bank.
Mr. Chiarelli holds a BS in Banking and Money Management from Adelphi University and is a successful graduate of Chemical Bank’s Credit Management Training Program.
Executive Vice President, Communications and Marketing
Ms. Crispen is the Executive Vice President of Communications and Marketing for SIFMA.
Prior to joining SIFMA, Ms. Crispen was Senior Vice President of Communications and Marketing for the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA). At MBA, she was responsible for MBA’s external and internal communications programs, including directing relations with the national media; developing speeches and presentations for MBA’s leadership; marketing of the association’s products, services and membership; and overseeing all aspects of publishing the association’s monthly magazine and online newsletters.
Before joining MBA, Ms. Crispen was Vice President of Public Affairs for the Export-Import Bank of the United States, where she was responsible for developing and implementing strategic communications and public outreach programs, managing the bank’s external and internal communications and developing overall bank positioning.
Previously, Ms. Crispen was Vice President of Global Marketing and Communications at JPMorganChase, where she developed brand positioning and direct marketing programs as well as managed global advertising, media outreach, Internet design and content, client publications, speakers bureau, investor relations and internal communications. Prior to JPMorganChase, she was Vice President of Global Communications for The Estee Lauder Companies Inc., where she developed and executed strategic communications and marketing programs.
Ms. Crispen has extensive government experience having served as primary media spokesperson for international trade policy as Director of Public Affairs for the U.S. Department of Commerce, where she formulated public affairs strategy for 200 offices worldwide. She also served as chief spokesperson for domestic finance at the U.S. Department of the Treasury, where she formulated and implemented public affairs strategies relating to domestic finance issues such as banking, government securities, the stock market, taxes, the budget and money laundering. She has worked on several national presidential campaigns dealing with media relations, opposition research and advertising.
Ms. Crispen began her career at Hill and Knowlton Public Affairs Worldwide and has served on numerous national political campaigns. She graduated from the University of Colorado in Boulder with a bachelor’s degree, double-majoring in international economic affairs and political science. She also attended the University of Pittsburgh’s study abroad program involving travel and study in 11 foreign countries.
Ira D. Hammerman
Executive Vice President and General Counsel
Mr. Hammerman is Executive Vice President and General Counsel for SIFMA. Since 2004, Mr. Hammerman has overseen SIFMA’s legal advocacy efforts and outside counsel relationships.
He has been intimately involved with SIFMA’s response to the 2008 financial crisis, particularly SIFMA’s advocacy efforts related to the Dodd-Frank Act. Prior to joining SIFMA, Mr. Hammerman was a partner of Clifford Chance, where over a 19 year period he represented the financial services industry on a wide variety of securities regulatory and enforcement matters before the SEC, FINRA and state regulatory authorities. His practice focused on U.S. securities regulation of U.S. and foreign financial institutions, including broker-dealers, investment advisers, banks and investment companies. A substantial part of his practice included representation of financial institutions with respect to trading, compliance and enforcement matters.
Mr. Hammerman received his law degree from Georgetown University Law Center in 1985 and received a B.A. from Emory University in 1982. He is a member of the District of Columbia and New York Bars.
Chief Financial and Chief Administrative Officer
Mr. Krasner is the Chief Financial and Chief Administration Officer for SIFMA. He joined the Association in October 2008. Mr. Krasner brings nearly 25 years of experience in finance, audit, business management, and administrative services. He is responsible for SIFMA’s finance, technology, human resources, and facilities management functions.
Prior to joining SIFMA, Mr. Krasner held finance positions at both UBS and JP Morgan Chase specifically in the areas of Fixed Income Finance, Asset Management and Corporate and Administrative Services. Additionally, he worked for the Securities Industry Association – the predecessor association to SIFMA – from 1995 to 1998. Prior to positions in the financial services industry, he was the controller of an application development firm as well as an auditor at the accounting firm of JH Cohn and Company.
Mr. Krasner, a CPA, holds a BA in Economics from Rutgers University.
Executive Vice President, Business Policies & Practices
Mr. Snook is the Executive Vice President of Business Policies & Practices for SIFMA. He is responsible for overseeing the Association’s three U.S. business groups – Capital Markets, Private Client and Asset Management – as well as Technology and Operations, Research, and Member Engagement.
Prior to joining the Association, Mr. Snook held several senior positions at Goldman Sachs, including co-head of the Credit Capital Markets New Issue Desk, co-head of the Corporate Bond Business Unit and head of the Investment Grade Syndicate. Mr. Snook became a partner at Goldman in 2000. Before joining Goldman Sachs, he was an Associate at Drexel Burnham Lambert and an Assistant Treasurer at Bankers Trust.
Mr. Snook holds a B.S. in civil engineering and an MBA degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.