Our Founders

Bill Matson, MBA, CFA, CPA (Retired), CFP, FLMI 
CEO and Co-Founder

Bill has been a staunch advocate for consumers of financial services for over 20 years. In particular, he has been active in the area of investor education.
In 1993, he founded Virtual Company Visits (VCV), whose mission was to democratize access to quality investment research for small investors, while channeling capital to those ventures likely to employ it most effectively. VCV sought to do this by pioneering the production of equity research reports in an interactive CD-ROM video format, featuring interviews with senior managers at publicly traded companies, as well as product demonstrations, facilities tours, and financial models presented via interactive spreadsheets.
As the 1990’s came to a close, Bill became increasingly concerned with the conflicts of interest, self-dealing, and lack of integrity tainting Wall Street’s advice to small investors, in addition to the dangerously inflated valuations being accorded to tech stocks. To address these issues, he set out to create a uniquely comprehensive guide to stock market investing that was published in 2004 as Data Driven Investing (co-authored with Mitchell R. Hardy).
The book includes 45 months of Bill's Fidelity brokerage statements  from a period (July 2000 to March 2004) when the S&P 500 lost 18% of its value while Bill was making 788% - more than $3,000,000 in gains. Over the course of its 500-plus pages, the authors analyze in detail how these returns were achieved. Joe Moglia, the Chairman of TD Ameritrade, one of America's largest discount stock brokerages, referred to Data Driven Investing as “groundbreaking” in his own book entitled Coach Yourself to Success: Winning the Investment Game

Bill’s strategies were largely informed by exhaustive study of historical data, including millions of stock price and financial statement data points for thousands of companies during the 52 years from 1951 to 2002. Investors need only click on Data Driven Investing to access the entire book free of charge through Google Books.

A retired Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Bill also holds Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), and Certified Financial Planner (CFP) designations. He is a graduate of Babson College, where he received his B.S. in Accounting with Highest Distinction, and of Harvard Business School, where he earned his MBA.
Bill is currently on the Board of Advisors of the Admiral James J. Carey Foundation. At various times, he has been Membership Vice President of both the Harvard Club of San Francisco and the Harvard Business School Association of Northern California.

Michael Sarfatti, BSME, MSME, PE 
COO, CIO and Co-Founder

Mike has almost 40 years experience in a variety of industries, including petrochemical, financial services, and information technology, holding positions in engineering, training, marketing/sales, business development and executive management, co-founding five companies involving software development and web-related infrastructure, security, ecommerce and social media technologies and consumer implementations.

In the financial services arena, Mike spent four years at Merrill Lynch as a consumer investment advisor. Following this, he spent six years as co-founder and VP of Fractal Markets, Inc., an institutional financials and currencies futures trading advisory service utilizing our proprietary mathematical models drawn from non-linear dynamics to identify, track and act upon opportunities. 

He also has extensive volunteer experience in a variety of professional, alumni, and social organizations. Mike is a former officer and director of the MIT Club of Northern California holding a variety of executive positions, including that of president, as well as serving as the regional representative to the MIT Alumni Association. He was also a co-founder and the first president/chair of the MIT Enterprise Forum of the Bay Area (dba VLAB).
Mike is a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, earning Bachelors and Masters degrees in Mechanical Engineering and is a Registered Professional Mechanical Engineer (PE)(California).


Our Advisors

Rear Admiral [Ret.] James Carey

Since Jim's retirement from uniformed military service as a Navy Rear Admiral and federal government service as Chairman of the U. S. Federal Maritime Commission, he has pursued a broad range of endeavors. Among his many roles, he currently serves:

  • As Managing Director of Business/Government Strategies LLC
  • As the elected National Chairman and CEO of The Flag & General Officers' Network (TFGON) of 3700+ Admirals and Generals  www.TFGON.org
  • On the Advisory Board of the Call of Duty Endowment Foundation (sponsored by Activision)
  • On the Board of Directors of the 4000+ member Reagan Administration Alumni Association.

In addition, he continues his extensive involvement in the Washington Scholars Fellowship Programs, which he founded in the mid-1980’s. Over the years, these programs have provided over 600 promising young adults with public policy-related internships, as well as Jim’s personal mentorship. Jim holds a B.S. degree in Business Administration from Northwestern University.

Steve Hardy

Steve Hardy was the President and Founder of Zephyr Associates, Inc., which licenses the StyleAdvisor software program to over 1000 major institutional investor clients including pension plan sponsors, money managers and consultants. StyleAdvisor was the first commercially available software program designed to utilize Bill Sharpe's unique returns-based style analysis. The program measures manager style and creates customized style benchmarks (normal portfolios) using only manager and index returns.
Prior to forming Zephyr Associates (sold in 2007), Steve Hardy was a principal of the firm Balch, Hardy, Scheinman & Winston, Inc., a money management firm. During its twenty-one year history, the firm pioneered the use of options and developed a number of quantitative stock and option strategies for large tax-exempt funds. Prior to co-founding BHSW, Mr. Hardy was a Vice President of Dean Witter & Company. He received his degree in Business Administration from Whittier College in 1968.




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