ISITC Member Spotlight – Gary Heald

How long have you been involved with ISITC and what positions have you held/do you sit on any committees?
I have been involved with ISITC for 8 years. Jan Snitzer, the Chairperson at the time, encouraged me to attend my first conference in 2012.  Since then I have been involved with both the Investment Management and Middle Office Forums as well as the Claims and Compensation, Derivatives, Reconciliation and Settlements Working Groups.  I’ve been a co-chair of the Settlements Working Group since 2015 and have collaborated to update existing and create new market practices.  I continue to enjoy the opportunity to learn and share industry knowledge with the other ISITC Members. 

What's one of your favorite memories from your time at ISITC?
I’ve been fortunate to attend annual conference since 2015 with the most unique location being out on Coronado Island in California.   Each conference offers the opportunity for me to learn and grow, both personally and professionally. 

My most memorable experience was early on, during my very first conference in Boston in 2012.  I witnessed how passionate and dedicated these members were to process improvement and standardization. An extra session was added to further discuss the collateral market practice.   At that time, I wasn’t involved with collateral at Loomis Sayles, but my experience with the Fed $50 million rule afforded me the opportunity to contribute to the discussion.  This was my first opportunity to share my experiences.  It was at this point I realized the importance of “having a seat at the table” as I like to say, by participating in these discussions.  Everyone’s input is valuable when trying to improve a process or complete a market practice.

What’s the most impactful lesson you've gained from ISITC that you were able to bring back to your firm?
I have learned so much about the industry and operations over the past 8 years.  While sharing that information with my firm is valuable, I feel the connections I have made with other ISTIC members and firms is of even greater value.  As we all know, this industry is constantly changing.  When my firm is looking to offer a new product or onboard a new process, my first resource is my ISITC contacts.  If an organization has already rolled this out, or is in the process, we can leverage their experiences and go from there.  And that opportunity is reciprocated as well.  Industry contacts made through ISITC have become integral resources for us.  For me, knowing your resources and how to best apply the knowledge shared would be the most impactful lesson learned.  

If you weren't working in financial services, what would you want to do for work?
I really enjoy history, especially of the financial markets.  I am still fascinated that my grandfather kept his job on Wall Street through the Great Crash in 1929 and did not retire until the early 1980’s.  That being said, if I were not working in financial services, I would probably be a historian or a history professor.  You never know, that could be a second career someday – maybe something to dabble in during my retirement.

If you could live anywhere else in the world, where would it be?
I am not sure I could live anywhere else, honestly.  As I get older I might want to get away from the snow and cold but even then, my ideal location would be close to both the ocean and mountains and more importantly, near some quality golf courses.  I would definitely stay on the east coast of the United States and for now, while I still enjoy the changing of the seasons, New England is the perfect place for me.