Isenberg finance graduate Gary Cameron ’89 has strong admiration for Isenberg students and the impact of their education. As the former director of U.S. Dollar Interest swaps with J.P. Morgan for nine years, he witnessed a marked improvement in Isenberg interns at his firm after Mark Fuller became the school’s dean in 2009. “Our Isenberg interns improved year after year in both polish and drive,” says Gary, who is Senior Portfolio Manager with Garda Capital and head of its USD trading team.
As a fund manager who appreciates a sound investment, Gary supports Isenberg financially through two vehicles. The first—echoing his own student years—is a scholarship for outstanding, economically challenged finance students. The second, which frequently benefits students as well, is his unrestricted gift to the Dean’s Fund for Excellence. “I leave it unrestricted because the dean knows best where my support will have the greatest yield,” notes Gary.
This year, a portion of that gift went to the school’s annual student-run Women of Isenberg Conference. Now in its fifth year, the event attracted 440 students, alumnae, and educators. Gary’s gift helped students at the daylong gathering to network with scores of business professionals and attend panels devoted to mentorship, technology, business culture, crisis management, and other business essentials.
Gary also mentors students himself and shares insights in the classroom during his periodic visits to Isenberg. In Professor Mila Sherman’s Alternative Investments class, he told students, “Most important is trading with a complete lack of ego.” Successful traders, he added, “have the ability to hold an evaluation matrix in their heads—to devise alternative what-if scenarios and outcomes. Also, you can’t try to be too smart. You’ll talk yourself out of everything.
“We’re all Type A’s,” Gary continued. “When things go awry—and they will—you have to accept it and move on. My teams have been 100% honest. You have one chance at it—to secure your good name. If you cut corners, you will get caught.”
Gary credits Isenberg’s success to its stellar leadership at the top. “Isenberg’s recent development has been stunning,” he emphasizes. “I support the school to give its students well-deserved opportunities. They are a remarkably high-quality group.”