2014 ETF.com Awards Finalists Announced

January 20, 2015

In recognizing the forces that support the growth of the ETF industry, each year at its annual ETF.com Awards Dinner ETF.com recognizes the people, companies and products that are moving the industry forward. The dinner takes place March 19 at Pier 61 in New York City.

The award selection process follows three steps:

  1. An open nominating process
  2. A “Nominating Committee” composed of senior members of ETF.com’s editorial and analytics components narrows the nominees to a maximum of five in each category
  3. A “Selection Committee” of independent ETF experts votes on the winners.

The methodology is explained in detail here.

The Nominating Committee recently wrapped up its work and is excited to announce the finalists in each of the 25 categories under consideration. The nominees are:

Category 1: Lifetime Achievement Award

Awarded annually to one living individual for outstanding long-term contributions to ETF investor outcomes, whether from a position of media, regulation, product provider or investor. Previous winners are not eligible.

Nominee No. 1: John Bogle
From an untiring emphasis on the “humble arithmetic” of indexing, to the customer-owned structure of his brainchild, Vanguard, there’s zero doubt that Jack Bogle is perhaps the biggest reason fund fees are falling and getting lower. Even his cranky critique of the perils of over-trading ETFs is, in its way, laudable: He truly wants what’s best for investors.

Nominee No. 2: Reggie Browne
Every phenomenon needs a wizard behind the scenes who helps make it all possible. Part of the power of ETFs—and part of the challenge for ETF investors— is the complexities of trading them. Reggie Browne became famous as a market maker who provided liquidity to compelling funds that needed to be nurtured in the trading traffic. He thus casts a long and important shadow in the world of ETFs.

Nominee No. 3: Lee Kranefuss
You won’t find an executive with more ETF-specific “street cred” than Lee Kranefuss. His almost-evangelical belief that the future of investing belonged to ETFs has been crucial to the rise of the industry. Under his direction, iShares grew to be the biggest ETF issuer in the world, and the unrivaled breadth of the company’s product line serves as the perfect metaphor of the power of ETFs.

Nominee No. 4: Burton Malkiel
Burton Malkiel put indexing on the map with his 1973 book, “A Random Walk Down Wall Street.” An enthusiastic proponent of index–based investments and ETFs, this Princeton academic remains engaged in many realms of the investment business, not least at chief investment officer of Wealthfront, the biggest player in the new “robo-advisor” field.

Nominee No. 5: Gus Sauter
During his 25-year career at Vanguard, Gus Sauter saw the firm shift from upstart to the biggest mutual fund company in the world. Sauter’s emphasis on indexing, on thoughtful diversification in asset allocation and on encouraging investors to stick to their plans puts Sauter and his nearly decade-long stint as CIO at the very center of Vanguard’s spectacular rise.

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