ISITC Member Spotlight – Ky Dong

1.     How long have you been involved with ISITC and what positions have you held/do you sit on any committees?
I’ve been an ISITC member for 11 years and have been a co-chair of the Derivatives working group since December 2008.

How did you become involved with ISITC and why did you ultimately join?
Around the time when I joined ISITC, Franklin Templeton was just beginning to trade derivatives. My boss at the time thought that it would be a good idea to get exposure to what other firms in the industry were doing, and ISITC was a great organization for that. We were able to make a business case to see what others were doing at these conferences and then take what we learned back to our organization. It started as three people from Franklin Templeton – including me – who were from the Global Operations team and are responsible for middle office practices, and we’ve brought more people from other departments to attend over the years. It started more as an educational endeavor, but as time has moved on, we’ve gotten more involved in terms of helping ISITC accomplish its mission.

The past 10 years have been a journey and have allowed me to meet a lot of new people who have helped me understand the industry better than before. I’d like to specifically call out fellow Derivatives working group co-chair Michael Burg, Brian Manning, and the board, who have all been very welcoming and helpful throughout this experience. ISITC is a great organization to join, and I look forward to many more years with the group.

What’s the most memorable/important initiative you’ve worked on as an ISITC member?
There’s been a number of them, but as a whole, it’s been the body of work that we’ve produced as an organization. In the Derivatives working group, we’ve seen a lot of change in the past 10 years – starting with the meltdown in ’08 and all the regulations that have followed. We’ve put in a lot of work for developing market practices - for example, how to clear swaps. Also, the cloud management work we’ve partnered with the Settlements working group on has been informative and engaging.

Another memorable initiative that I’ve been a part of in the past three years was the “ETD and Cleared OTC Margin Call and Communication Standards and Settlement Processing” market practice. We worked with SIFMA AMG and FIA to create the practice and it took a lot of effort from various parties in the trade lifecycles, from brokers, to vendors, to buy-side, etc. In the end, I was proud to have represented ISITC in the creation of that document.

What’s your favorite non-work hobby?
I like to travel and read books. Photography is probably my main hobby, and I have a lot of ISITC friends on Facebook who have likely seen pictures of my food and travels. For my last trips, I went to Scotland and Japan, which were my main highlights of the year.

What would be your last meal?
I enjoy a lot of good food, so this is tough. But if I had to choose, I would probably want a simple meal – Chinese BBQ pork. It’s something I ate a lot as a kid and is a comfort food for me.