Forefront was founded by Christopher Geczy, Ph.D. in order to provide innovative solutions and research-based consulting services to institutional clients. Dr. Geczy fused his career interests in the research and teaching of financial topics with the practice of quantitative asset management to create a business model in which academic ideas infuse the firm’s products, practices and people. Through its vision, products and investment philosophy, the firm has grown its services and client base to include Fortune 500 companies, large multinational organizations, and single- and multi-employer pensions, among others.
An Integrated Asset Management and Consulting Firm
Forefront is an integrated asset management and consulting firm built around a risk-based discipline of investing and a client-centric approach to our engagements. Our client mandates employ principles grounded in rigorous financial economics. We apply advanced quantitative analytics, proprietary research, and other tools to systematically measure risk and return. Forefront and its affiliates, provide investment services to clients, accounting for the firm’s more than $18.3 billion in assets under advisement of which $1.13 billion is in assets under management.*
We believe that the effective stewardship of investment capital requires the right people, resources, and an intense devotion to reach the forefront of innovation in our practice.
Forefront’s culture centers on commitment to unwavering ethical conduct, elevated legal compliance, and a determined analytical mindset. We believe that our collegial environment promotes cutting-edge investment thinking.
Forefront Analytics is an SEC-registered investment adviser.
Our Business Principles
Rigorous primary research is a cornerstone of our investment analysis and creates value for our clients. Consistent with our academic roots, we are committed to continuous innovation and research across all our business lines.
Founder, CEO & CIO
Chris Geczy is the Founder, CEO, and Chief Investment Officer of Forefront Analytics, LLC. In addition to overall Firm management and direction, Dr. Geczy oversees investment decision making including manager selection, portfolio construction, and tail hedge overlay management. He is also the lead member of the Investment Committee as well as co-portfolio manager on private funds for which Forefront is the investment manager.
Professor Geczy has been on the Finance Department faculty at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania since 1997. He is Academic Director of the Jacobs Levy Equity Management Center for Quantitative Financial Research. He is also Academic Director of the Wharton Wealth Management Initiative at Wharton Executive Education. He has a B.A. in economics from the University of Pennsylvania and a Ph.D. in finance and econometrics from the Graduate School of Business at the University of Chicago.
Before his studies at Chicago, Chris worked for the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, Washington, DC in its Division of Research and Statistics. He regularly teaches investment management and co-created the first full course on hedge funds at The Wharton School, a course on Impact Investing, and a large number of executive education courses. He has taught AIMR/CFA Institute-accredited professional Risk Management courses through the University of Chicago’s Graduate School of Business.
Chris has been the Academic Director of a number of Wharton Executive Education programs including the 2009 Securities Industry Institute in partnership with SIFMA, the Private Wealth Management program in partnership with The CFA Institute, and programs focused on advanced strategies, endowments and foundations, alternatives and hedge funds in partnership with the Investment Management Consultants Association (IMCA). In addition, he has taught Investment Management in the Penn-Securities Association of China (Penn-SAC) program for a number of years. He received the Best Elective Course Teaching Award in the Wharton Executive MBA Program and the Wharton Teaching Excellence Award for the 2017-2018 and 2020-2021 academic years.
He has served on the Economic Advisory Board of NASDAQ, has been an editor of the Journal of Alternative Investments and is on the Editorial Advisory Board of the Journal of Wealth Management. He is Co-Editor of Financial Planning Review, the academic journal of the CFP® Board Center for Financial Planning. Chris is also a founding board member and past Chairman of the Mid-Atlantic Hedge Fund Association and served on the curriculum and exam committee of the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst Association (CAIA).
Chris’s current research focuses on various topics including multifactor models, wealth management, risk management, asset allocation, the performance of managed funds including hedge funds, venture capital and private equity as well as other alternatives, and various aspects of equity lending and short-selling. His work has appeared in numerous books and scholarly journals including the Journal of Finance, Journal of Financial Economics, the Society of Industrial and Organizational Psychology and the Journal of Political Economy. It has also been covered in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, the Financial Times, Forbes, NPR, on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” and in numerous other media outlets.
He currently consults with and advises a number of private and institutional investors including pension plans, insurance companies and ultra-high net worth families and others in the area of portfolio construction, management and evaluation, asset allocation, investment selection, alternative investments including private equity, infrastructure, hedge funds, risk management, and subprime exposures in both the 1940 Act space as well as the private fund area.
He serves on the Impact Investing Advisory Council of the Wharton Social Impact Initiative and the Wharton Sports Business Initiative.
Chris also is Emeritus Trustee and member of the Investment Committee of The Episcopal Academy and is on the board of Somatix, Inc.
Nancy Gao serves as the Portfolio Manager to the Forefront ESG strategies.
Before attending Wharton, she spent four years at China’s State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE), an arm of China Central Bank which manages $3.6 trillion in foreign exchange assets. At SAFE, Ms. Gao served as a Senior Associate in Risk Management. She has also worked as an equity research analyst at China International Capital Corp. (CICC), one of China’s largest investment banks; and during her time at Wharton she worked as an associate in the fixed income department at Santander Investment Securities, Inc. in New York City.
Ms. Gao is a graduate of Beijing Foreign Studies University (B.A. in International Economics) and Peking University (M.A. in Economics). She is a CFA Charterholder and was awarded the Financial Risk Manager (FRM) certification by the Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP).
Andrew Giannone is a CFA charterholder with over 10 years of experience in a variety of traditional and alternative investment roles. He is a Senior Portfolio Manager and a member of Forefront’s investment committee and research team. Prior to Forefront, Andrew served as Chief Investment Officer for Alden Investment Group where he ran the firm’s separate account program and alternative investment platform. Andrew also served as Associate Portfolio Manager and Head Trader at Bluestone Capital Management where he helped manage and implement the firm’s quantitative separate account, mutual fund, ETF, and hedge fund programs. Prior to Bluestone, Andrew worked at CITCO Fund Services where he provided analysis and specialized services to a variety of Hedge Fund and Private Equity clients. Andrew graduated from the Pennsylvania State University with a B.S. in Finance and a minor in Economics.
Charles Herman is a Senior Portfolio Advisor at Forefront Analytics. As a physician executive, investor, researcher, and author, Dr. Herman is a thought leader in the science of innovation. In addition to his work with Forefront, he is the Chief Executive officer of Somatix, inc., he is also a Board Director of StoneRidge Investment Partners. Formerly, he was Chief Medical Executive in Lehigh Valley Health Network. Charles has had research grants from the National Science Foundation and Howard Hughes Institute. His Expertise includes: bioactive implant materials and devices, photodynamic therapy, pulsed magnetic fields, infection control, and medical applications for artificial intelligence. Charles has served as an advisor to several VC, PE, medical consulting and device companies. He has approximately 100 scientific publications including four textbooks. He has received research awards from the American College of Physicians and American Professionals in Infection Control, book prizes from the American Publishers’ Association and British Medical Association. Wharton School MBA with Honors, Palmer Scholar, 2018, and former student of Dr. Geczy.
Ethan Kiliany is a portfolio manager and quantitative analyst for Forefront. Prior to joining Forefront, Ethan worked at SEI Investments as a member of the equity portfolio management team, where he covered the firm’s managed volatility strategies and quantitative manager research efforts after previously covering SEI’s U.S. Large Cap strategies. Before his time at SEI, Ethan worked at JPMorgan Asset Management as a member of the Beta Strategies team supporting the ETF platform, where he helped manage the creation and redemption processes for JPMorgan’s ETF offerings. He holds a B.S. in Finance from Penn State University, and is a CFA Level II candidate.
Patrick A. Tucci, CFA is a portfolio manager responsible for Hedge Fund investments within the Forefront Analytics Select Fund and direct investments for other clients. He also contributes in sourcing, vetting and recommending Private Equity and long only managers. He is a member of the Investment Committee. Prior to moving over to Forefront Analytics, Mr. Tucci was founding team member of DuPont’s US Pension Hedge Fund team, where he was responsible for portfolio management, research and due diligence of hedge funds. He also played an integral part in revamping the pension’s Private Real Estate investments and process.
In addition to being a Charted Financial Analyst (CFA), Mr. Tucci has an MBA from The Simon School University of Rochester and a BS, cum laude, in Computer Science from Northeastern University (Boston). Mr. Tucci also designed and taught a CFA Level 1 Preparatory to University of Delaware Graduate and Undergraduate students.
Evan Xu is a Portfolio Manager and Quantitative Investment Analyst for Forefront. He most recently graduated from Temple University with a Masters in Financial Analysis and Risk Management. Prior to joining Forefront, he gained experience working in corporate finance, doing analysis and financial research for an investment and merchant banking firm as well as at an academic institute. Evan is also a graduate of the Shanghai University of International Business and Economics, with a BEc in Finance and a B.B.A. in Human Resource Management. Evan is a CFA Charterholder and was awarded the Financial Risk Manager (FRM) certification by the Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP). Evan currently leads the quantitative and programmatic investment analysis.
Austin Alfonsi joined Forefront in 2019 as part of the operations team. Prior to joining Forefront he worked for a back-office operations firm for nearly 10 years which provided outsourced day-to-day data reconciliation and reporting solutions. Austin graduated from Shippensburg University with a B.S. in Finance while also playing collegiate soccer.
Lee Dodek joined Forefront in mid-2019 as an accountant after working for nine years at a consulting firm and growing into a corporate accounting manager role responsible for leading the monthly close processes for all of the company’s AR and AP. He also was called upon for various leadership initiatives within the company, such as the implementation and training of employees on new software. Lee received his B.S. in accounting from Penn State in 2009 and his MBA from Holy Family in 2016.
Thomas Plaut recently joined Forefront’s operations team after working with them through an outside vendor for several years. Tom is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts with a B.S. in Resource Economics and has nearly a decade’s worth of experience in Investment Operations & Reporting. Prior to joining Forefront he worked for a firm which provided outsourced back office operations and reporting solutions to large RIAs, and before that at a global fund administrator. When not in the office he enjoys fly fishing in his local trout stream.
IT & Infrastructure
Jamie Doran has served on the IT staff at Forefront Analytics, LLC. Since the firm’s founding in 2008 and is responsible for the design, implementation, and maintenance of technology and infrastructure resources. These resources include technologies pertaining to data availability, accessibility, and security.
Jamie began his IT career in 1995 when employed at Micro Gallery, a value added reseller and IT services company. There he served the technology support and procurement needs of corporate and government clients including The Ohio State University and the caucuses at the Ohio Statehouse.
In 1998, Jamie moved to Pennsylvania and took a position at Softmart, an international volume licensing reseller for large and mid‐sized corporate and government clients. Jamie attended The Ohio State University.
Alec joined Forefront as a member of the compliance team in March of 2022, He is responsible for several of the daily internal compliance procedures of the Firm. Prior to forefront he worked as a compliance associate at a capitalization table management startup, He graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2018 with a B.A. in Political Science.
*AUM and AUA were calculated as of 12/31/2021 and are subject to change without notice. Totals may include estimations. The AUM and AUA represented include assets attributable to both Forefront Analytics, LLC and its affiliate, GKFO, LLC.