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Young Professionals Committee Leadership 

Ben Spiegelman


Raised in New York and inspired by the people who are revolutionizing the world.

Professionally, I currently lead the corporate development effort for Symbiont, a FinTech startup, who is focused on utilizing Blockchain technology to bring transparency and efficiencies to marketplaces. Previously, I have had an array of diverse experience as a salesman @ Google, a trader @ Bank of America, and a banker/investor @ SenaHill Partners.

Scholastically, I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Finance and Technology Management from the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University. Additionally, I studied International Business at the Danish Institute for Study Abroad in Copenhagen.

The work I am proudest of is being the C0-Chairman for the Young Professional Committee of Futures and Options. Futures and Options is a non-profit career and personal development organization for NYC's youth. I currently lead the committee of 50 young professionals to raise capital to help provide funding for the program and scholarships for our students.

In my free time, I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, watching and attending sports, skiing, golfing, and traveling. 


Zhe Zhao


Zhe is an Analyst at Davidson Kempner Capital Management, focused on distressed investments. 

She also has experience in private equity, investment banking and real estate. Zhe holds a B.S. from Duke University. She has been involved with Futures and Options since 2015. 

Outside of work, she enjoys skiing fresh powder, watching college hoops, reading paperbacks, and spending time with friends. 


Fundraising Committee

Chris Miceika

Fundraising Co-Chair

Chris is a Director on the Business Development and Relationship Management team at Commonfund.  At Commonfund, he is responsible for supporting institutional investors across endowments and foundations, healthcare organizations and public pensions in the Southeastern United States.

Melanie Jones

Fundraising Co-Chair

Melanie is an Associate Director at Commonfund and is currently responsible for developing and maintaining relationships with endowment and foundation clients in the northeast.  Prior to her current role at Commonfund, Melanie was the investor relations operations liaison between Citco Fund Services and Tudor Investment Corporation responsible for developing an investor web portal and building reporting efficiencies.

Melanie graduated from the University of Connecticut, with a B.S. degree in Business Management. 

Recruitment Committee


Krish Dutta

Recruitment Co-Chair

 Krish is currently a Principal at Centerview Partners, where he is focused on providing strategic advice and complex M&A matters across a broad range of industry sectors. He has been part of the Futures and Options YPC since 2016 and is a co-chair of the Recruiting Committee.

His prior experience includes being an investment banker in the Consumer and Retail Group at Barclays Capital (New York, NY) and a consultant at Cornerstone Research (Boston, MA).

Krish holds a B.A. from Brandeis University and an MBA from MIT Sloan. Additionally, he has served as a Big Brother.


Liliana Nunez

Recruitment Co-Chair

Liliana Nunez is a Corporate Internal Auditor at Kuehne + Nagel Inc., a global logistics company, where she conducts audits, risk assessments and consulting engagements in North, Central and South America, while supporting the global teams in Switzerland and Singapore.  She is also a Certified Internal Auditor and is Certified in Risk Management Assurance.  In addition to her work with Futures and Options, Liliana also volunteers with NYCares and helps 2nd graders build robots and learn computer coding, though if you ask her, the 2nd graders help her!


W. Greg Thonsen

Recruitment Co-Chair

Greg is an Assistant Vice President at Golub Capital, a private credit asset manager. He is responsible for investing in and managing a portfolio of debt investments in mid-sized companies for the firm's Consumer, Restaurant & Retail vertical. Prior to that, Greg began his career at GE Capital in the Investment Analyst Program and held other roles in direct lending. Greg earned his BA in Finance and International Business from Gordon College, where he remains on the Board of Advisors for finance alumni. 

Michael Babakitis

Recruitment Co-Chair

Michael is a Vice President in the Global Power and Utility Group of Morgan Stanley. He works with clients across the utility, power generation and clean tech spaces to execute mergers, acquisitions, sales, and capital market transactions. Michael holds a B.B.A. from the University of Texas at Austin and a J.D. from Columbia University.

Social Committee


Ashley Niness

Social Co-Chair

 Ashley Niness is an Assistant Vice President in the Data and Information Management group at Moody's Investors Service. She is responsible for the implementation and management of a new business operation related to the central processing and management of data that will support research and analysis for the business. She has held a number of different positions at Moody's since she started at the company in 2010. She holds an MBA from NYU Stern and a Bachelors from Colgate University.


Alexander Isik

Social Co-Chair

 Alexander is an associate in the Consumer Retail Group of Barclays Investment Bank. He works with global consumer and retail companies to analyze and execute acquisitions, divestitures, sales, and capital market transactions. He also recruits, interviews, and trains incoming summer and full-time analysts for Barclays and the Consumer Retail Group. Alexander graduated from Columbia University in the City of New York with a B.A. in Economics & Mathematics.

Volunteer Committee


Alexandra Whitman

Volunteer Co-Chair

Alex joined the Family & Philanthropy Advisory group in September 2017, which focuses on family dynamics, family office governance, and philanthropic solutions. In her current role, she assists in Private Briefings by working with Financial Advisors to understand the needs of UHNW clients and deliver the firm's full range of global resources.
Alex also manages the UBS Financial Education Program, a digital platform which promotes financial literacy for all age groups.

 Alex began her career at UBS in the Graduate Talent Program (GTP), where she spent two years rotating across business units within Wealth Management Americas including the Client Strategy Office, Advice & Platforms, International Sales, Fixed Income Research, and a Financial Advisor team.

 Outside of work, Alex is on the Young Professional boards of two non-profits, Futures & Options and the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation.

Jess Whitman

Alumni Engagement Co-Chair

Jess joined the YPC in 2017, inspired by the mission of the organization. 

Professionally, Jess is an Investment Banking Analyst for the Technology group at Morgan Stanley. 

 Outside of work, he loves to be active and be outside.  Some of his favorite hiking locations include Yosemite, Glacier National Park, and the National Parks in Southern Utah.

© 2017 Futures and Options. All Rights Reserved.
Futures and Options is a nonprofit career development and paid internship program for New York City youth.

120 Broadway, Suite 1019. New York, NY 10271. 212-601-0002.