WASHINGTON — Alan D. Polsky, senior vice president of Minneapolis-based Dougherty & Co. and former chair of the National Federation of Municipal Analysts, will become chairman of the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board beginning Oct. 1, according to market sources.
The MSRB is expected to soon announce Polsky's new post, as well as the names of a new vice chairman and other new members that were elected earlier this summer to serve on the board.
Polsky, who is responsible for Dougherty's negotiated municipal underwriting and fixed-income institutional sales and research, will replace Michael Bartolotta, a vice chairman at First Southwest Co. Polsky joined the MSRB on Oct. 1, 2009, for a three-year term, serving as a broker-dealer firm representative.
He will head the MSRB at a time when the board, the Securities and Exchange Commission, and Congress have been focused on improving secondary market disclosure and other muni market reforms.
Polsky was very involved in secondary market disclosure when he chaired the NFMA in 2001. During that year, the group issued several "best practice" documents recommending how issuers, borrowers, and other market participants could improve disclosure in various sectors of the market.
Polsky also was a member of the Muni Council, a group of about 20 muni market group representatives dedicated to improving secondary market disclosure that created the Central Post Office facility, which temporarily served as a one-stop place for issuers to file their disclosure documents.
During his more than 26 years at Dougherty, Polsky also served as director of research for the tax-exempt sector and was a tax-exempt bond trader. Before joining the firm, he was controller for the University of Minnesota Foundation and an audit manager for Peat, Marwick & Mitchell. He received a bachelor's degree in business administration from the University of Wisconsin in Madison.
Susan Gaffney, director of the Government Finance Officers Association's federal liaison office here, said: "GFOA has enjoyed working with Alan over the years in multiple capacities, including his work for NFMA on the Muni Council. He was an original party to the council, and helped forge a healthy working relationship between the analyst and issuer communities. We look forward to continuing our strong relationship with Alan as he becomes chairman of the MSRB, during what should be a dynamic time for this regulatory body."
"We are very happy to see Bond Dealers of America founding board member Alan Polsky elected as chair of the MSRB," said Michael Nicholas, BDA's CEO. "Alan has a history of industry leadership and the MSRB and the municipal bond market only stand to benefit from his chairmanship at the MSRB."
Gregory Clark, NFMA's current chairman and a senior municipal credit analyst at Concordia Advisors, LLC, said "As NFMA's chair, Alan was a consummate professional, managing our diverse group — which includes representatives of the sell side, buy side, rating agencies and other industry participants — in a knowledgeable and collegial way. We are sure that Alan's broad municipal market experience will enable him to lead the MSRB during a time of heightened investor and regulatory focus on our market."