Siebert Brandford Shank and Co. LLC, the No. 14 senior manager of bond issues by par amount in 2012, appointed recent New York City mayoral candidate and former comptroller Bill Thompson as chief administrative officer and senior managing director. The firm also promoted Sean Werdlow to chief operating officer.
Thompson previously served at Siebert from 2010 until 2013, when he began his run for mayor. Werdlow, who was Detroit’s chief financial officer from 2002 to 2005, has been managing director at Siebert since 2005. Thompson and Werdlow will both report to chief executive officer Suzanne Shank.
“The firm is now exploring new business opportunities in other sectors and these professionals will be critical to the firm’s continued growth and expansion efforts,” Shank said. “We want to take advantage of these two individuals’ strengths as spreads decline, volume is not expected to be as robust, and the muni business faces new advisor rules.”
Sibert Brandford Shank, a top municipal bond underwriter recognized for its minority and female-led upper management team, was lead manager on $4.65 billion in par of bond issues in 2012, according to Thomson Reuters data. In April, the firm hired Gary Hall, formerly of JPMorgan, as national head of public finance banking.
The move to expand the Siebert’s senior management team is a step toward expanding the 75-person company’s market share, Shank said in an interview. The firm grew dramatically during the financial crisis, and many of the Siebert’s leaders work in several different capacities at the firm, Shank said.
“As we look at other opportunities, perhaps more engagement in the privatization side or other businesses, there may be hires to target,” Shank said. “We have been trying to build a really strong team and this was a natural progression.”
As New York City comptroller from 2002 to 2009, Thompson reformed operations at the New York Stock Exchange and led the Banking Development District program, Siebert said. The banking development program was designed to expand bank branches into communities throughout the state that lacked adequate financial services.
Thompson managed a combined portfolio as advisor to five New York City pension funds that exceeded $100 billion, Siebert said in a press release. As custodian to the funds, Thompson invested hundreds of millions of dollars in affordable housing and commercial real estate in the city, according to Siebert.
“Given all of the uncertainty surrounding federal, state and city budgets in recent years, it is more important than ever for municipalities to have access to experienced financial industry guidance,” Thompson said in the press release.
Before joining Siebert, Werdlow served as Detroit’s chief financial officer from 2002 to 2005. His experience in the public sector includes structuring and managing leasing, water and sewer, pension, hospital finance and general obligation transactions, Siebert said.