GMM Planning Underway: New Location and a Nod to Tech

Spring is finally emerging, and so are plans for the next General Membership Meeting (GMM) event. NICSA is looking forward to seeing a new location and the development of rich programming help to create a productive meeting experience for its members. NICSA recently set out to talk with Dan Houlihan, Chairman of the Board, about our upcoming General Membership Meeting and the value it can deliver to its membership.

NICSA: What can you divulge about the GMM planning that’s currently underway?

Dan: As Chairman of NICSA’s Board, I am proud to work with a group of tenured executives in the industry that help shape the organization and its mission. Planning the GMM is one of the most important and fulfilling products of the association and I couldn’t be more pleased that Karan McClimans, Vice President of Service Provider Oversight at T. Rowe Price, and Jennifer Hanes, Head of Investment Management & Operations at FIS have been selected as the Co-Chairs for the 2017 General Membership Committee.

What I love about NICSA is that the programming is largely developed by members for members. The top notch talent leading NICSA’s committees is well-versed in identifying the issues that matter most to asset managers and bringing together a wide range of experts to share their insights on these issues. The association is focused keenly on technology themes within asset management, so I think members can expect to see some buzz around those types of topics.

NICSA: What’s the most important value that the GMM can deliver to its members?

Dan: The agenda is key, which is why so much effort is put into developing valuable content for members. Quality programming brings a diverse and experienced audience, and this in turn makes for optimal networking and idea sharing. For many members, the networking is probably the most important aspect of the GMM. The NICSA GMM allows its members to talk with many of the people that shape the processes and best practices that companies, and the industry as a whole, follow.

As the industry grows and evolves, it gets more and more important to be able to connect with industry peers in a meaningful way. NICSA’s more intimate settings allows for impactful interaction with colleagues from a very wide range of perspectives. From technology, to distribution, to regulatory issues, members are able to find answers and actionable steps to take back to their businesses.

NICSA: Any changes this year that you feel members will appreciate?

Dan: The new location (the Royal Sonesta in Boston) gives NICSA the opportunity to change things up a bit, and should be a great venue right along the Charles River. Our association’s top priority is to ensure that NICSA members have access to the latest information, education and networking opportunities to help amplify their professional development and keep a competitive advantage within the industry. We have a great foundation to start from to make the meeting better than ever, building a program that will attract new attendees from new companies and new segments of the industry.

NICSA: What do you look for when you go to a conference? And what sets NICSA apart?

Dan: I look for opportunities to learn and connect. I’ve been to many conferences and what I look for are events where people are gathering and interacting with each other, actively participating in sessions and genuinely engaged throughout the conference. NICSA is a unique and valuable source of educational and networking opportunities. As an industry veteran, I have personally found tremendous value in NICSA’s offerings and they certainly have played a part in my firm’s strategy considerations. At NICSA’s GMM, I hope to see people actively engaged and sharing ideas, which means that the organization will have accomplished what it set out to do.

Registration for the 2017 General Membership Meeting (GMM) will open in early June. Click here for more information. 

Dan Houlihan is the North American Head of Northern Trust’s Global Fund Services (GFS) segment, responsible for servicing the firm’s asset management clients. GFS is focused on the delivery of all asset servicing for fund clients, including middle-office outsourcing, fund administration, fund accounting, transfer agency, and custody.

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