Quantitative Research Boutique Adds Two PhD's and a CFA® as it Accelerates Growth Plans
(Houston, Texas) January 5, 2010. Ascendant Advisors, LLC, one of the oldest independent registered investment advisors in Texas, announced that Todd Smurl, CFA, Truett Majors, PhD, and Katherine Ensor, PhD, have all recently joined the investment firm as it prepares to accelerate growth plans.
Mr. Smurl joined the company as President and Chief Compliance Officer. In this capacity, he will be responsible for the management and overall growth of Ascendant Advisors, LLC; the primary operating subsidiary of Ascendant Advisors Group. He also joins the firm as a member of the Investment Committee.
Todd joins Ascendant Advisors, LLC after four years at Consilium Wealth Consulting, a national consultancy he founded providing professional services to registered investment advisers, banks, and broker‐dealers. Prior to Consilium, Mr. Smurl was with Compass Bank, where he served as Executive Vice President and Managing Director of Investment Management for the bank's Wealth Management Group, overseeing approximately $4 billion in assets under management. He holds a BBA from University of Central Arkansas and an MBA from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. Todd is a CFA Charterholder and is a member of the Houston Society of Financial Analysts.
Truett Majors, PhD joins Ascendant Advisors, LLC as Vice President of Quantitative Investment Research. In this role he is responsible for the technical design and expansion of the firm's quantitative research platform. Dr. Majors has spent nearly two decades successfully building and implementing quantitative and statistical research models with a variety of Texas‐based investment companies, including: Seager Capital Group, Barbnet Investments, MSD Capital, LP, and HBK Holdings, LP. Dr. Majors is an experimental physicist whose early career in nuclear, solid state, and atomic and molecular physics led to instrumentation development for such facilities as CERN in Geneva and the Superconducting Super Collider, a ring particle accelerator in Texas.
Katherine Ensor, PhD joins Ascendant Advisors, LLC as a consultant. Dr. Ensor is responsible for the technical development of the firm's quantitative research models and its proprietary algorithms and key statistical routines embedded in those processes. Dr. Ensor is a leading author and researcher in statistical finance. She is chair of the Department of Statistics at Rice University, a position she has held since 1999. Dr. Ensor is also the founding, and current, director for the Center for Computational Finance and Economic Systems (CoFES) at Rice University. Dr. Ensor earned a Ph.D. in Statistics from Texas A&M University. She also has a MS and BSE in Mathematics from Arkansas State University.
Jim Lee, Founder of Ascendant Advisors Group, LLC, said, "We are excited to have such excellent talent as Todd, Truett and Kathy join our team as we pursue additional acquisitions and accelerate our growth plans."
J. Philip Ferguson, non‐executive Chairman of the firm's Investment Committee, and Vice Chairman of the University of Texas Investment Management Company (UTIMCO) adds, "Ascendant's excellent long‐term performance record is the result of rigorous, independent quantitative research implemented by outstanding personnel. Todd has distinguished himself in the investment management profession and will be a welcome addition to the Ascendant team in this key leadership role. Truett and Kathy are also important additions for us, advancing the quantitative investment process first developed by our Chief Investment Officer, John H. Lee, CFA."
About Ascendant Advisors, LLCFounded in 1970, Ascendant Advisors, LLC is one of the oldest independent registered investment advisers in Texas, providing active portfolio management to high net worth families and institutions. Ascendant's investment effort is led by a five‐member Investment Committee, whose members average over 30 years of first‐hand investment experience. The firm offers its clients decades of proprietary investment research, a disciplined and proven quantitative process, a conflict‐free and client‐aligned structure, and finally a low and transparent and overall cost structure.
For more information on Ascendant Advisors, LLC please visit www.ascendantadvisors.com
Contact: Karen ScelliniTel. (713) 552-1880