First and foremost, our portfolio managers conduct bottom-up, intensive stock research. They collaborate with research analysts and traders on valuations and sizing of positions. Ultimately, portfolio managers make all final decisions regarding purchases and sales.
Matthew benkendorf rgb 1280x720px

Matthew Benkendorf

Chief Investment Officer


Mr. Benkendorf joined Vontobel Asset Management, Inc., in October 1999 in trade support. After being promoted to trader in 2000, Mr. Benkendorf became a research analyst in 2002 and moved into portfolio management in 2006 as deputy portfolio manager of Vontobel’s European Equity Strategy. In 2008 Mr. Benkendorf continued to grow in his portfolio management role becoming lead portfolio manager of European Equity and deputy portfolio manager of Global Equity and in 2010 became deputy portfolio manager of the Vontobel U.S. Equity Strategy ultimately becoming lead portfolio manager in 2012. As a co-architect of Vontobel’s quality growth philosophy and style and proven success in managing Vontobel’s strategies he was named Chief Investment Officer in March 2016. Mr. Benkendorf received a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA) in finance from the University of Denver.

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Edwin walczak

Edwin Walczak

Managing Director

Portfolio Manager


Mr. Walczak joined Vontobel Asset Management, Inc., in July 1988. Mr. Walczak has held a management position on the U.S. Equity Strategy since its inception. Prior to joining Vontobel, from 1984 to 1988, Mr. Walczak worked as an institutional portfolio manager at Lazard Frères Asset Management, and from 1982 to 1984, he was an institutional relationship manager at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. Mr. Walczak began his financial career in 1978 at the Ford Motor Company in Dearborn, Michigan and General Motors Corporation, New York, where he held successive positions as a financial analyst until 1982. He has made numerous media appearances, including Wall Street Week, CNN, and Bloomberg and in various publications, such as Forbes, Smart Money and the Wall Street Journal. He received an M.B.A. in finance and an M.A. in international politics and economics from Columbia University, and was an International Fellow in Columbia Graduate School. In addition he received a B.A. (Phi Beta Kappa) in government from Colby College.

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Mr. Benkendorf joined Vontobel Asset Management, Inc., in October 1999 in trade support. After being promoted to trader in 2000, Mr. Benkendorf became a research analyst in 2002 and moved into portfolio management in 2006 as deputy portfolio manager of Vontobel’s European Equity Strategy. In 2008 Mr. Benkendorf continued to grow in his portfolio management role becoming lead portfolio manager of European Equity and deputy portfolio manager of Global Equity and in 2010 became deputy portfolio manager of the Vontobel U.S. Equity Strategy ultimately becoming lead portfolio manager in 2012. As a co-architect of Vontobel’s quality growth philosophy and style and proven success in managing Vontobel’s strategies he was named Chief Investment Officer in March 2016. Mr. Benkendorf received a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA) in finance from the University of Denver.

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Mr. Walczak joined Vontobel Asset Management, Inc., in July 1988. Mr. Walczak has held a management position on the U.S. Equity Strategy since its inception. Prior to joining Vontobel, from 1984 to 1988, Mr. Walczak worked as an institutional portfolio manager at Lazard Frères Asset Management, and from 1982 to 1984, he was an institutional relationship manager at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. Mr. Walczak began his financial career in 1978 at the Ford Motor Company in Dearborn, Michigan and General Motors Corporation, New York, where he held successive positions as a financial analyst until 1982. He has made numerous media appearances, including Wall Street Week, CNN, and Bloomberg and in various publications, such as Forbes, Smart Money and the Wall Street Journal. He received an M.B.A. in finance and an M.A. in international politics and economics from Columbia University, and was an International Fellow in Columbia Graduate School. In addition he received a B.A. (Phi Beta Kappa) in government from Colby College.

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Brian bandsma

Brian Bandsma

Executive Director

Portfolio Manager


Mr. Bandsma joined Vontobel Asset Management, Inc., in November 2002 as a senior research analyst. Mr. Bandsma focuses on researching companies in the Information Technology, Financial, Telecom Services and Consumer Discretionary sectors. In 2013, in addition to his research responsibilities he was promoted to deputy portfolio manager of the Vontobel Far East Equity Strategy and became the lead portfolio manager of the strategy in 2016 while also becoming deputy portfolio manager on the firm’s Emerging Markets Equity Strategy. In addition to his portfolio management duties, Mr. Bandsma continues to conduct research analysis on individual stocks which may be included in the firm’s other strategies. This is consistent with the investment team structure at Vontobel. Prior to joining Vontobel, Mr. Bandsma began his financial career in 1998 at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co where he was a senior associate and analyst until 2002. He received an M.B.A. in finance and accounting from NYU Stern School of Business and a B.A. in finance from Grand Valley State University.

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Daniel kranson

Donny Kranson, CFA

Executive Director

Portfolio Manager


Mr. Kranson joined Vontobel Asset Management, Inc., in July 2007 as a senior research analyst covering stocks globally. Although he is responsible for analyzing various sectors, he is largely focused on Consumer Staples, a core sector for all of Vontobel’s Quality Growth strategies. In 2013, Mr. Kranson was promoted to deputy portfolio manager of the Vontobel European Equity Strategy, and in 2016, Mr. Kranson became lead portfolio manager for the strategy while also becoming deputy portfolio manager of the firm’s International Equity Strategy. In addition to his portfolio management duties, Mr. Kranson continues to conduct research analysis on individual stocks which may be included in the firm’s other strategies. This is consistent with the investment team structure at Vontobel. Mr. Kranson began his investment career in 1999 on the sell side, at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. where he analyzed companies based in the U.S. and Europe in the technology space and later in the healthcare industry. In 2006, he switched to the buy side, working at Scout Capital Management, where he evaluated both Health Care and Consumer companies in both developed and emerging markets. Mr. Kranson received a B.S. in operations research from Columbia University.  Daniel Kranson is a CFA® charterholder.

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Mr. Bandsma joined Vontobel Asset Management, Inc., in November 2002 as a senior research analyst. Mr. Bandsma focuses on researching companies in the Information Technology, Financial, Telecom Services and Consumer Discretionary sectors. In 2013, in addition to his research responsibilities he was promoted to deputy portfolio manager of the Vontobel Far East Equity Strategy and became the lead portfolio manager of the strategy in 2016 while also becoming deputy portfolio manager on the firm’s Emerging Markets Equity Strategy. In addition to his portfolio management duties, Mr. Bandsma continues to conduct research analysis on individual stocks which may be included in the firm’s other strategies. This is consistent with the investment team structure at Vontobel. Prior to joining Vontobel, Mr. Bandsma began his financial career in 1998 at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co where he was a senior associate and analyst until 2002. He received an M.B.A. in finance and accounting from NYU Stern School of Business and a B.A. in finance from Grand Valley State University.

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Mr. Kranson joined Vontobel Asset Management, Inc., in July 2007 as a senior research analyst covering stocks globally. Although he is responsible for analyzing various sectors, he is largely focused on Consumer Staples, a core sector for all of Vontobel’s Quality Growth strategies. In 2013, Mr. Kranson was promoted to deputy portfolio manager of the Vontobel European Equity Strategy, and in 2016, Mr. Kranson became lead portfolio manager for the strategy while also becoming deputy portfolio manager of the firm’s International Equity Strategy. In addition to his portfolio management duties, Mr. Kranson continues to conduct research analysis on individual stocks which may be included in the firm’s other strategies. This is consistent with the investment team structure at Vontobel. Mr. Kranson began his investment career in 1999 on the sell side, at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. where he analyzed companies based in the U.S. and Europe in the technology space and later in the healthcare industry. In 2006, he switched to the buy side, working at Scout Capital Management, where he evaluated both Health Care and Consumer companies in both developed and emerging markets. Mr. Kranson received a B.S. in operations research from Columbia University.  Daniel Kranson is a CFA® charterholder.

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Jin zhang

Jin Zhang, CFA

Executive Director

Portfolio Manager


Mr. Zhang joined Vontobel Asset Management, Inc., in November 2005 as a senior research analyst and was promoted to deputy portfolio manager of the firm’s Emerging Markets Equity Strategy in June 2016. In additional to his portfolio management responsibilities Mr. Zhang maintains his research responsibilities focusing on the consumer staples and financial sectors. Prior to joining Vontobel, from 2000 to 2005, he was an equity analyst at Lehman Brothers. He began his financial career in 1995 working in the finance department of General Electric (China) where he graduated from the Financial Management Program in 1998. Mr. Zhang received an M.B.A. in financial management from the MIT Sloan School of Management and a B.A. in economics from Beijing University. Jin Zhang is a CFA® charterholder.

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David souccar

David Souccar

Executive Director

Portfolio Manager


Mr. Souccar joined Vontobel Asset Management, Inc., in April 2007 as senior research analyst and was promoted to deputy portfolio manager on the firm’s International Equity Strategy in June 2016. In addition to Mr. Souccar’s portfolio management responsibilities he maintains his research responsibilities focusing on the energy, industrials and utilities sectors. Prior to joining Vontobel, from 2005 to 2007, he was a senior investment analyst at Federated Investors. From 1998 to 2005, Mr. Souccar worked as a sell-side analyst at Morgan Stanley. He began his financial career in 1996 at McKinsey & Co. where he worked as a consultant until 1998. Mr. Souccar received an M.B.A. in finance and management from NYU Stern School of Business and a B.S. in chemical engineering from Escola de Engenharia Maua.   

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Mr. Zhang joined Vontobel Asset Management, Inc., in November 2005 as a senior research analyst and was promoted to deputy portfolio manager of the firm’s Emerging Markets Equity Strategy in June 2016. In additional to his portfolio management responsibilities Mr. Zhang maintains his research responsibilities focusing on the consumer staples and financial sectors. Prior to joining Vontobel, from 2000 to 2005, he was an equity analyst at Lehman Brothers. He began his financial career in 1995 working in the finance department of General Electric (China) where he graduated from the Financial Management Program in 1998. Mr. Zhang received an M.B.A. in financial management from the MIT Sloan School of Management and a B.A. in economics from Beijing University. Jin Zhang is a CFA® charterholder.

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Mr. Souccar joined Vontobel Asset Management, Inc., in April 2007 as senior research analyst and was promoted to deputy portfolio manager on the firm’s International Equity Strategy in June 2016. In addition to Mr. Souccar’s portfolio management responsibilities he maintains his research responsibilities focusing on the energy, industrials and utilities sectors. Prior to joining Vontobel, from 2005 to 2007, he was a senior investment analyst at Federated Investors. From 1998 to 2005, Mr. Souccar worked as a sell-side analyst at Morgan Stanley. He began his financial career in 1996 at McKinsey & Co. where he worked as a consultant until 1998. Mr. Souccar received an M.B.A. in finance and management from NYU Stern School of Business and a B.S. in chemical engineering from Escola de Engenharia Maua.   

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Ramiz chelat

Ramiz Chelat, CFA

Executive Director

Portfolio Manager


Mr. Chelat joined Vontobel Asset Management, Inc., in July 2007 as a senior research analyst and was promoted to deputy portfolio manager on the firm’s Global Equity Strategy in June 2016. In additional to his portfolio management responsibilities, Mr. Chelat maintains his research responsibilities focusing on the consumer discretionary, consumer staples and information technology sectors. Prior to joining Vontobel, from 2004 to 2007, he was head of consumer and media research at Macquarie Hong Kong, and an analyst at Macquarie Australia, from 2000 to 2004. Prior to that, he was a financial analyst at Optus, from 1999 to 2000. Mr. Chelat began his financial career in 1997 at Ernst & Young where he was a senior accountant until 1999. He received a Bachelor of Commerce in accounting and finance from Macquarie University. In addition Mr. Chelat is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Australia as a qualified chartered accountant. Ramiz Chelat is a CFA® charterholder.

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Mr. Chelat joined Vontobel Asset Management, Inc., in July 2007 as a senior research analyst and was promoted to deputy portfolio manager on the firm’s Global Equity Strategy in June 2016. In additional to his portfolio management responsibilities, Mr. Chelat maintains his research responsibilities focusing on the consumer discretionary, consumer staples and information technology sectors. Prior to joining Vontobel, from 2004 to 2007, he was head of consumer and media research at Macquarie Hong Kong, and an analyst at Macquarie Australia, from 2000 to 2004. Prior to that, he was a financial analyst at Optus, from 1999 to 2000. Mr. Chelat began his financial career in 1997 at Ernst & Young where he was a senior accountant until 1999. He received a Bachelor of Commerce in accounting and finance from Macquarie University. In addition Mr. Chelat is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Australia as a qualified chartered accountant. Ramiz Chelat is a CFA® charterholder.

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