Alexander Saint-AmandCLICK FOR BIO
Alexander Saint-Amand is President and CEO of Gerson Lehrman Group, the world’s largest membership for professional learning and expertise. He is a founding member of the company and previously served as its Chief Operating Officer. During his tenure and under his leadership, GLG has grown from a small start-up to one of New York City’s most successful venture-backed companies, having facilitated over 1.5 million teaching and learning projects, and now with over 20 offices in 12 countries.
Born and raised in New York City, Alexander attended the University of Virginia but withdrew early due to a family illness. During his break from college he volunteered as an emergency medical technician and worked as a reporter at Bloomberg News. He later returned to and graduated from UVA, studying chemistry.
During his senior year, he began to develop a rolodex of the world’s top physicians to whom he and GLG's early customers turned for insights on the latest medical breakthroughs. These contacts became GLG's initial membership, known then as the Council of Healthcare Advisors. Alexander began gathering the membership for periodic roundtable discussions in New York City, and for telephone consultations and other small, interactive convenings.
In the fifteen years since then, the GLG Councils have grown to include more than 350,000 of the world’s leading medical, scientific and technology experts; leading academics and senior and retired executives; and regulatory and policy experts, who provide perspective and mentorship to GLG’s clients. Alexander has led GLG’s commitment to teaching and learning, which is transforming the way the world’s leading professionals gather and share expertise.
Will BallardCLICK FOR BIO
Will Ballard serves as Chief Technology Officer at Gerson Lehrman Group and is responsible for the Engineering and IT organizations.
Prior to joining GLG, Will was the Executive Vice President of Technology and Engineering at Demand Media. Before that, he was Vice President and Chief Technology Officer of Pluck, through its acquisition by Demand Media. At both organizations Will managed large teams of engineers responsible for software architecture, design, development and quality assurance. He was also responsible for the design and operation of large data centers that helped run site services for customers including Gannett, Hearst Magazines, NFL.com, NPR, The Washington Post and Whole Foods. Will has also held leadership roles in software development at NetSolve (now Cisco), NetSpend and Works.com (now Bank of America).
Will graduated Magna Cum Laude with a BS in Mathematics from Claremont McKenna College.
John DonoghueCLICK FOR BIO
John Donoghue serves as Head of New Markets at Gerson Lehrman Group and is responsible for launching and operationalizing new customer segments for GLG.
Before GLG, John practiced law at O'Melveny & Myers and served as Associate Counsel at the White House in the Clinton-Gore Administration.
John received his undergraduate and law degrees from Georgetown University.
Laurence HermanCLICK FOR BIO
Laurence Herman serves as General Counsel and Managing Director at Gerson Lehrman Group. He oversees legal and compliance globally, and works closely with communications and business development.
Earlier in his career, Laurence practiced law at Cahill Gordon & Reindel and was Senior Vice President, Operations, for Capital IQ, Inc. He worked in strategic development for Delphi Capital, working with the firm's affiliated fund of funds and hedge funds, insurance companies and other investment projects. He currently serves on the board of the Investorside Research Association.
Laurence received a BA from Williams College and earned a JD from the University of Chicago.
Michael KingCLICK FOR BIO
Michael King serves as Chief Compliance Counsel at Gerson Lehrman Group.
Prior to GLG, Michael spent more than nine years at the Securities and Exchange Commission in the Enforcement Division. He managed asset management and FCPA enforcement cases and left as an Assistant Director of the SEC’s Texas office.
Now he supervises a global team of compliance professionals who are responsible for GLG’s industry leading compliance platform and systems.
Before the SEC, he was a litigator in the Dallas office of Haynes and Boone, LLP.
David LeggCLICK FOR BIO
David Legg serves as Head of International Markets and Managing Director of Gerson Lehrman Group. Since 2003, David has developed our global client base and led our strategic expansion into Europe and Asia, with GLG teams now serving clients in over a dozen unique markets outside the US.
Previously, David oversaw strategy and business development projects at McKinsey & Company in the United States, Canada and England.
He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Lethbridge, in Alberta, Canada, and holds a PhD in political science from Yale University. In addition, David holds a law degree from Oxford University, where he was a Chevening fellow.
Phillip PonCLICK FOR BIO
Phillip Pon serves as Co-Head of Global Research and Managing Director of Gerson Lehrman Group.
Phillip previously held positions at KKR/Capstone, McKinsey & Company and CIBC Merchant Banking.
He received his undergraduate degree from the Richard Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario, and holds an MSc in Forced Migration from Oxford University.
Tania SecorCLICK FOR BIO
Tania Secor serves as Chief Financial Officer at Gerson Lehrman Group where she oversees finance, accounting, strategy, human resources and facilities.
Tania previously served as CFO for Digital, Mobile and Print Media at Bloomberg. In 2009, she was part of the management team that sold and integrated BusinessWeek into Bloomberg. Before her involvement at Bloomberg BusinessWeek, she spent six years at McGraw Hill in various financial leadership positions, including Senior Director of Financial Planning & Analysis at McGraw-Hill’s Information & Media division, a $1 billion division of McGraw-Hill. She began her career as an investment banker at JP Morgan and then worked for six years in private equity at Weiss, Peck & Greer as a Vice President.
Tania attended Columbia University both for undergraduate and later for her M.B.A., graduating Beta Gamma Sigma.
Jim SharpeCLICK FOR BIO
Jim Sharpe serves as Head of North American Financial Services and Managing Director of Gerson Lehrman Group.
Jim began his career as an investment banking analyst. He first joined GLG in 2001 working in research. He became a Practice Area Leader in GLG’s Energy & Industrials practice before leaving to run a private equity backed industrial company as CEO and Chairman.
Jim received his undergraduate degree in commerce from the University of Virginia.
Richard SocaridesCLICK FOR BIO
Richard Socarides serves as Head of Public Affairs at Gerson Lehrman Group, overseeing media, communications and government relations.
Richard served as White House Special Assistant and Senior Advisor to President Bill Clinton, where he focused on policy and political issues. He has also worked on Capitol Hill, as Special Assistant to Senator Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), and in senior corporate roles in media (Time Warner), entertainment (New Line Cinema) and technology (AOL).
A lawyer by training, Richard was formerly a partner in Squadron, Ellenoff, Plesent and Lehrer and Of Counsel at Brady Klein Weissman LLP, both New York City law firms.
Richard is a writer and regular contributor to The New Yorker and is also a frequent social and political commentator on television. He is a long-time gay rights advocate. A native New Yorker, Richard is a Trustee of the State University of New York (SUNY) and a graduate of Hofstra University School of Law and Antioch College.
Jennifer Van Ness CLICK FOR BIO
Jennifer Van Ness serves as Global Head of Marketing at Gerson Lehrman Group, responsible for developing GLG’s brand strategy.
Prior to GLG, Jennifer held senior management roles at Colgate-Palmolive and Diageo, leading key businesses. Additionally, Jennifer was a Board Director on behalf of a Diageo Joint Venture. More recently she has advised businesses in creating new models and improved growth strategies.
Jennifer has volunteered for children and families since the age of 15 and has raised money for public schools, tutored learning disabled students and worked with advocacy groups such as Dress for Success.
Jennifer graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and earned an MBA from the Amos Tuck School at Dartmouth.