Management Team

Executive Team

Paul Chou

Chief Executive Officer, Co-Founder

team_paulPaul L. Chou is an experienced securities trader, software engineer and financial entrepreneur. Prior to assuming his current position, Paul co-founded and ran Opez, a software company which received funding from the prestigious Y Combinator program, a startup accelerator fund which has sponsored Dropbox, Reddit and Airbnb. Prior to Opez, Paul was a trader on the Quantitative Cash Trading desk within the Securities Division of Goldman Sachs, where he was responsible for the development, trading and risk management of algorithmic equity trading strategies for U.S. and Japanese markets.

Paul received a B.S. in Computer Science and a B.S. in Mathematics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. While at MIT, he worked in the Laboratory for Financial Engineering to develop models of market participant behavior in limit order books given the introduction of stochastic, asymmetric information.

In January 2016, Paul was appointed to the CFTC’s Technology Advisory Committee (TAC), which was created in 1999 to advise the Commission on the impact and implications of technological innovations on financial services and the futures markets, and the appropriate legislative and regulatory response to increasing use of technology in the markets.

Juthica Chou

President and Chief Risk Officer, Co-Founder

Juthica B+WJuthica Chou spent 7 years as a derivatives trader within the Securities Division of Goldman Sachs, where she specialized in algorithmic trading. Juthica began her career as an options market-maker on the Quantitative Volatility Trading desk, where her product scope ranged from equity and index options to VIX, treasuries, currencies and commodities. She later joined the Single Stock Volatility desk, where she traded dispersion and variance swaps and focused on the automated quoting of packaged trades.

Juthica received a B.S. in Mathematics with Computer Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Zach Dexter

Chief Technology Officer, Co-Founder

Zach B+WZach Dexter is an experienced software engineer, project manager and technology architect. Prior to assuming his current position, Zach was Lead Software Engineer at Tutorspree, where he built out the full stack for an extensive set of internal tools and external-facing features. Prior to Tutorspree, Zach was a Principal at Databracket, where he built out the full technology stack and managed software engineers for a number of technology start-ups, including IceCharge, a credit card fraud prevention venture.

Zach received a B.A. in Computer Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He also attended Recurse Center, the selective NY-based technology education program.

Shabana Paul

Chief Financial & Operating Officer

Shabana B+WShabana Paul has over 15 years of experience in the financial services industry. Prior to assuming her current position, Shabana was the Business Unit Manager for the Global Quantitative Trading business within the Securities Division of Goldman Sachs, where she was responsible for key financial and operational aspects of the business, including business restructurings and strategic initiatives, market research and analysis, business planning and forecasting, expense management, and external and internal client relationship management. Shabana joined Goldman Sachs in 2004 as an analyst within the Finance Division, where she worked as the Senior Accounting Officer for Goldman’s Hull Trading businesses.

Shabana received a B.S. in Finance and in Information Systems, as well as an M.B.A., from New York University.

Ian Darrow

General Counsel & Chief Compliance Officer

Ian J. Darrow is an experienced attorney who has advised some of the world’s most sophisticated technology companies and investment firms on strategy, governance and transactional matters. Prior to joining LedgerX, Ian practiced in the Washington, D.C. office of Goodwin Procter LLP, where he advised clients on a range of matters including mergers and acquisitions, minority investments, regulatory compliance, securities issuances and general corporate governance. As part of Ian’s practice, he counseled clients on compliance and risk management issues raised by the use of novel technologies in the finance sector. His work also included analyzing target companies’ compliance with U.S. and foreign laws and regulations and making recommendations for remediation.

Ian received a J.D. from Duke University and a B.A. in economics from Denison University. Prior to his time at Goodwin, Ian served as an infantry officer in the United States Marine Corps.

Independent Directors

James E. Newsome, Ph.D

Dr. James Newsome is a Founding Partner of Delta Strategy Group, a strategic consulting firm that provides a variety of services for its clients including political analysis, lobbying and business development.

While serving as executive of a Mississippi-based trade group, Jim was nominated by President Clinton and confirmed by the Senate to be a Commissioner of the CFTC in 1998. When President Bush was elected in 2000, Jim was nominated and confirmed as Chairman of the CFTC. In 2004, he assumed the role of President and CEO of the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX), the largest physical derivatives exchange in the world. During his tenure, Jim led the NYMEX initial public offering and merged NYMEX with the CME Group to create the world’s largest futures marketplace. Jim previously served on the boards of the NYMEX, CME Group, Dubai Mercantile Exchange and the National Futures Association.

Thomas K. Lewis, Jr.

Tom Lewis is a Founding Advisor of Noble4 Advisors LLC, a firm that helps organizations achieve sustainable Outstanding Performance.

Throughout his career, Tom has focused on competitive strategy in technology intensive businesses while teaching teams of people to achieve alignment, focus and high performance. Tom has successfully led four companies as CEO, including The Green Exchange (GreenX) and Ameritrade (now TD Ameritrade). He has lectured at several universities, serves on two academic boards, and has also served as an assistant professor at the Johns Hopkins University Carey Business School. Tom has served on numerous boards, and has worked in a leadership role in the Executive Office of the President at the White House, where he was recognized for outstanding performance.

Mark Wetjen

Mark Wetjen is Managing Director, Head of Global Policy at The Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC).

Mark was nominated by President Barack Obama in March 2011, and was unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate, to serve as commissioner on the CFTC. Mark served as commissioner from October 2011 to August 2015, including 5 months as acting chairman in which he managed daily operations, set overall policy direction of the agency and served as a principal on the U.S. Financial Stability Oversight Council. During his tenure, Mark oversaw implementation of the first trading mandate for certain interest rate and credit default swaps and supported and helped craft over 90 proposed and final CFTC rules and orders implementing Dodd-Frank. He also was a sponsor of the CFTC’s Global Markets Advisory Committee.

Prior to joining the CFTC, Mark worked for 7 years in the U.S. Senate as a senior leadership staffer advising on all financial-services-related matters, including the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010.

Robert P. Castrignano

Robert P. Castrignano is a Principal in the Equities Division at Sandler O’Neill + Partners, L.P. As one of four Principals in the Equities Division, Bob is responsible for managing the firm’s trading and distribution business. He joined the firm in October 2001 after spending 20 years at Goldman Sachs & Co., where he was most recently an Executive Director in the Private Wealth Management Group in Hong Kong.

While at Goldman Sachs, Bob helped build the firm’s private wealth management businesses in Hong Kong and Singapore. He was part of a team that researched, developed and implemented investment strategies for sophisticated clients and cultivated strong business relationships with many of the Pacific Rim’s wealthiest families. Prior to this, Bob spent 12 years in operations, technology and equities management in New York, London and Tokyo.

Bob is Chairman of the Board of The Family Office Co. BSC, a multi-client family office based in Bahrain. He is also on the Board of the Lymphoma Foundation, which is affiliated with Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York, actively supports the Hong Kong Society for the Protection of Children, and is a Patron of the Arts in the Vatican Museums.