Friends and colleagues of Joel Ganzer described him as reliable, generous with his time and committed to the municipal bond industry.
They also saw their friend as low-key and possessed of a great sense of humor. Mr. Ganzer, a 30-year veteran muni bond trader, died last month. He was 54.
Mr. Ganzer spent most of his career in trading, including the last 20 years at Roosevelt & Cross, where he was a senior vice president.
He started his career in munis at Merrill Lynch in the early 1980s, shortly after graduating from the State University of New York, Binghamton. He was there for more than a year before joining Chemical Bank as a short-term trader in 1984.
Mr. Ganzer moved on to Roosevelt in June 1993 as a short-term trader. He expanded into trading pre-refundings and Connecticut paper, and later “traded the gamut,” according to Elaine Brennan, a senior vice president covering the state of New York in the public finance department at Roosevelt.
Brennan had known Mr. Ganzer for 30 years, starting from the time he joined her short-term department at Chemical Bank. In 1993, the two moved to Roosevelt together to start a short-term desk there.
“He was known for his integrity, hard work and respect for all of the people that he dealt with, either in the firm or on the Street,” she said. “He always provided what the sales force needed, and in such a great way.
“Joel, in addition to being a great co-worker and a brilliant trader, was just a good, close personal friend of mine, and of many people of the business.”
Elaine’s husband, Jerry Brennan of Interactive Data, had also worked with and known Mr. Ganzer for years. He said Mr. Ganzer made many close friends in the industry due to his reliable and unselfish nature.
“In his long career in municipals, Joel Ganzer was a numbers man,” he said. “He was a gifted trader who could tell you the value of a .01 in a blink of an eye.”
Ken Meiselman, a muni bond trader at RBC Capital Markets, can trace his friendship with Mr. Ganzer back to their high school days in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn. Though a year apart, the two friends matriculated together at SUNY Binghamton, and remained close throughout their respective careers in munis.
“He was a fun-loving guy, from the social point of view,” Meiselman said. “From a business sense, he was a devoted bond guy; he liked the business. He talked about it during social gatherings … about stuff he was doing and where the markets were. He really cared about the business.”
Mr. Ganzer also had a light side, Meiselman added. He peppered his days with humor, mostly in the form of small practical jokes.
Still, Mr. Ganzer always stood ready to help colleagues and proved generous with his industry expertise, said Bill Welsh, a director at Roosevelt. He worked well with colleagues, was well-liked, and held in regard as a real gentleman, he said.
“Joel was just a very generous and giving person,” Welsh said. “He was one of those quiet guys who knew a lot of people and had tremendous knowledge of the business; he was committed to the industry, and had been for a long time.”
Mr. Ganzer is survived by his wife, Gloria Ganzer, his three sisters, Iris Nelson, Bonnie Ganzer-Shauli, and Nancy Hoffman, and their extended families.
Memorial contributions can be made to the American Cancer Society, as well as to Hospice Inn, at 70 Pinelawn Road, Melville, N.Y., 11747.