Board of Directors

 

Individual: 

Andrew S. Duff

Chairman of the Board

Andrew S. Duff

Andrew S. Duff has served as the chairman of Piper Jaffray Companies since 2003 and was previously the firm's chief executive officer from 2000 through 2017.

Duff joined Piper Jaffray in 1980 in the institutional fixed income sales group. He was later promoted to manager of institutional sales and trading in 1994, and then served as president of the individual investor services and capital markets areas until 1996. During the time period that Piper Jaffray was owned by U.S. Bancorp (1996 through 2003), Duff served as president of Piper Jaffray and vice chair of U.S. Bancorp for the wealth management group.

Duff holds a bachelor's degree in economics from Tufts University in Medford, Mass., and attended the Advanced Executive Program at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.

In 2017, Duff was named among the Most Admired CEOs by the Minneapolis-St. Paul Business Journal. He was inducted into the Minnesota Business Hall of Fame in 2018.

Duff currently serves on the board of directors of Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), the University of St. Thomas board of trustees and the University of St. Thomas Opus College of Business strategic board of governors. He is a longstanding member of the Walker Art Center board of trustees, and an advisor to the board of directors of Great Clips, Inc.

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Addison Piper

Addison Piper

Addison Piper retired from Piper Jaffray effective at the end of 2006, having served as vice chairman of Piper Jaffray Companies since the completion of the firm's spin-off from U.S. Bancorp on December 31, 2003. He worked for Piper Jaffray from 1969 through 2006, serving as assistant equity syndicate manager, director of securities trading and director of sales and marketing, before serving as chief executive officer from 1983 to 2000 and as chairman from 1988 to 2003. From 1998 through August 11, 2006, Piper also had responsibility for our venture and private capital fund activities.

Piper holds a bachelor's degree in economics from Williams College and a Master of Business Administration degree from Stanford University.

Piper is a member of the board of directors for Minnesota Comeback, Ed Allies, Minnesota Public Radio, Leuthold Funds, PREDEX Fund and a senior regent of St. Olaf College. He is the former chair of Abbott Northwestern Hospital, Washburn Center for Children, Minnesota Public Radio, St. Olaf College and former vice chair of the Minneapolis Downtown Council. He was also vice chair of the Securities Industries Association, former chair of the NYSE Regional Firms Committee, former director of Allina Health System, Minnesota Business Partnership, St. Martins Church Foundation, Renaissance Learning Corporation, Greenspring Corporation, and former trustee of Woodhill Country Club, Guthrie Theater and the Stanford University Business School Trust. Piper also has served as senior warden of St. Martins Church.

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Chad Abraham

Chief Executive Officer

Chad Abraham

Chad Abraham serves as the chief executive officer of Piper Jaffray and is a member of the firm's board of directors.

Abraham joined the firm in 1991 as an investment banking analyst. He spent the next 13 years on the West Coast as a banker in the company's technology investment banking group. He was promoted to managing director and head of technology investment banking in 1999. In 2005, Abraham was promoted to head of capital markets and in 2010, he became the global co-head of investment banking and capital markets.

Under the leadership of Abraham and co-head Scott LaRue, the firm's investment banking division grew revenues from approximately $150 million to more than $500 million. They established coverage in energy and financial services, expanded debt capital markets capabilities and added key offices and personnel.

Abraham serves on the board of trustees of the Nature Conservancy’s Minnesota, South Dakota and North Dakota chapter and the board of trustees of The Blake School. He graduated from Northwestern University with a bachelor’s degree in economics and political science.

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William Fitzgerald

William Fitzgerald

Bill Fitzgerald currently serves as chairman of the board of Ascent Capital Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: ASCMA), a position he has held since 2008. Previously, he also served as chief executive officer of Ascent from 2008 to 2018.

Fitzgerald served as senior vice president of Liberty Media Corporation from 2000 through 2012. While with Liberty Media, he served to evaluate media- and technology-related investment and acquisition opportunities, in addition to overseeing several of its assets. While with Liberty Media, he served as a director of Expedia, Inc. from 2006 until 2012 and TripAdvisor, Inc. from 2011 until 2013. He previously served as chairman of On Command Corporation and as a director of Game Show Network, True Position and Cablevision Systems Corp. He has served as a director of the Piper Jaffray Companies since March 2014.

Fitzgerald was previously executive vice president and chief operating officer for AT&T Broadband, formerly known as Tele-Communications, Inc. (TCI), where he oversaw the company’s broadband services operations. Before that, he was executive vice president of corporate development and partnership relations for TCI, where he managed the company’s M&A strategies and transactions as well as the company’s cable partnership and joint ventures. Fitzgerald joined TCI in March of 1996 as senior vice president and head of corporate development. Prior to TCI, he was a senior vice president and partner at Daniels & Associates, an investment banking firm to the communications industry. He began his career as a commercial banker at The First National Bank of Chicago.

Fitzgerald received a bachelor’s degree from Indiana University School of Business and a master’s degree in finance and marketing from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.

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B. Kristine Johnson

B. Kristine Johnson

B. Kristine Johnson is president of Affinity Capital Management, a venture capital firm that invests primarily in seed and early-stage health care companies in the U.S. She has held this position since 2000. She served as a consultant to Affinity Capital Management in 1999. Prior to serving as a consultant to Affinity Capital Management in 1999, Johnson was employed for 17 years at Medtronic, Inc., a manufacturer of cardiac pacemakers, neurological and spinal devices and other medical products, serving most recently as senior vice president and chief administrative officer from 1998 to 1999. Her experience at Medtronic also includes service as president of the vascular business and president of the tachyarrhythmia management business, among other roles.

Johnson earned a bachelor’s degree, summa cum laude, from St. Olaf College. She is also a recipient of the college’s Distinguished Alumni Award.

Johnson has been recognized for her board leadership by the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD) on its Directorship 100™ list and by Twin Cities Business as an Outstanding Director awardee. In addition to Piper Jaffray, Johnson serves on the board of directors of AtriCure, Inc. and as board chair of the University of Minnesota Foundation Investment Advisors, as well as the boards of several private entities. She is a former chair of the Board of Trustees of the University of Minnesota Foundation and of the Board of Regents of St. Olaf College.

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Tom Schreier

Tom Schreier

Tom Schreier was most recently vice chairman of Nuveen Investments, Inc., and chairman of its largest investment adviser, Nuveen Asset Management. Under Schreier, Nuveen’s assets under management grew to $231 billion in 2014, when Nuveen Investments was acquired by a strategic buyer, TIAA. Schreier served as CEO of FAF Advisors from 2000 to 2010 until its acquisition by Nuveen Investments, Inc. Earlier in his career, Schreier was a senior managing director and head of equity research at Piper Jaffray from 1998 to 2000. Schreier began his career at Northwest Airlines in 1988 as director of finance, and went on to become a top-ranked senior equity analyst covering the global airline industry at Credit Suisse First Boston.

Schreier is currently the founding director of the University of Notre Dame’s Inspired Leadership Initiative and chairman of the board of directors of Allina Health, a not-for-profit healthcare system based in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Schreier holds a bachelor’s degree in economics and German from the University of Notre Dame, and a Master of Business Administration degree from Harvard University.

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Sherry Smith

Sherry Smith

Sherry Smith is the former executive vice president and chief financial officer of SUPERVALU Inc., a $35 billion grocery company headquartered in Minnesota. Prior to serving as chief financial officer, Smith held a number of accounting management roles, including senior vice president of finance, corporate controller and treasurer during her 25 years at SUPERVALU. During her time there, Smith played a critical leadership role in several of the company's strategic initiatives, including acquisitions and business transformation activities. She began her career as a staff auditor at McGladrey & Pullen, LLP.

The National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD) recognized Smith for her board service on its Directorship 100™ list and she is also a NACD Board Leadership Fellow. She is also a current board member of Deere & Company, Tuesday Morning Corp. and Realogy Group Inc. Smith holds a bachelor's degree in accounting from St. Cloud State University and is a certified public accountant.

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Phil Soran

Philip Soran

Phil Soran most recently served as president of Dell Compellent until his retirement in March 2012. He co-founded NYSE-listed Compellent Technologies, Inc. in 2002 where he was president, CEO and director until the company was acquired by Dell for $960 million in 2011. Prior to that, he was the co-founder, president, chief executive officer and a director for data storage products maker, XIOtech Corp., which was later acquired by Seagate for $360 million. Soran was also a cofounder of Flipgrid, which was acquired by Microsoft Corporation in June 2018.

Soran is a director of SPS Commerce, Inc. and Foodsby Inc., a member of the board of trustees for the University of St. Thomas, a trustee for the University of Minnesota Foundation, and a director for Great MN Schools.

In 2016, Soran was inducted into the Minnesota Business Hall of Fame. Twin Cities Business recognized him with its 2017 Outstanding Directors award. The Minneapolis/St Paul Business Journal also selected Soran as its inaugural Lifetime Achievement inductee to the Titans of Technology Hall of Fame. He was recognized as the 2008 Entrepreneur of the Year by Ernst and Young, 2007 El Dorado Ventures Entrepreneur of the Year and 40 Minnesotans on the Move in 2009.

Soran holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics education from the University of Northern Colorado.

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Scott Taylor

Scott Taylor

Scott Taylor is executive vice president, general counsel and secretary of Symantec Corp., the global leader in cybersecurity headquartered in Mountain View, California. He has held this position since 2007.

Prior to joining Symantec, Taylor was chief administrative officer, senior vice president and general counsel of Phoenix Technologies Ltd. Before that, he served as vice president and general counsel of Narus, Inc. Taylor began his legal career as a corporate attorney with the San Francisco-based law firm Pillsbury Madison & Sutro (now Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman).

Taylor has been named among the “Top 100 Most Influential Blacks in Corporate America” by Savoy Magazine, “Top 50 Multicultural Leaders in Technology” by the National Diversity Council, and the “2018 Ethnic Minority Role Models” list by the Financial Times. He currently on the board of directors of DigiCert, the world’s premier provider of high-assurance digital certificates, as a trustee of The Menlo School and as a national advisory board member of the Stanford University Center for Comparative Studies on Race and Ethnicity.

Taylor holds a bachelor’s degree in international relations from Stanford University and a Juris doctorate degree from George Washington University.

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Michele Volpi

Michele Volpi

Michele Volpi has been the chief executive officer of Praesidiad (formerly Betafence Corporate Services) since November 2011. Praesidiad is the global leader of perimeter protection solutions with a key focus in segments like energy, oil & gas, border protection, data centers and the military. He is also chairman of the board of Hesco Ltd.

Volpi previously served as the chief executive officer and president of H.B. Fuller Co. following prior roles there as global adhesives business president and global strategic business unit manager for the assembly business. He also served as general manager of marketing for the polymershapes business unit of General Electric Company, as well as the European marketing director for GE's structured products business unit and industry manager for the European appliances market.

In his earlier career, Volpi worked as a management consultant in the Boston Consulting Group in Milan, Italy and as general manager at Habasit Hispanica and Habasit Italiana. Additionally, he served on the board of directors of Saipem SpA, a global oil and gas public company in Europe.

Volpi earned a bachelor's degree from Bocconi University in Milan, Italy. He is also a certified Six Sigma Green Belt.

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