John Roe has responded to my editorial supporting Ernest Jaffarian and Doug Bry over him and James Koutoulas for the upcoming election. He posted it on the Commodity Customer Coalition website. As promised, I posted it to John Lothian News, excerpting it in a blog post and directing people to the original source.
There is nothing in his response that has changed my mind. Roe and James Koutoulas are politically connected at the hip. Many of my criticisms were aimed at Koutoulas, and Roe has seemed to take on guilt by association. That is fine. It is how this election is shaped.
Nothing Roe said addressed my main concern, which is that Koutoulas has created a “toxic” environment on the NFA Board with his actions and accusations against the NFA executive committee as well as NFA employees. This is unfortunate.
Meanwhile, Bry and Jaffarian have gone from “rogue” petition candidates themselves to earning the respect of other NFA Board members, industry participants and even NFA staff.
I will say, to Roe’s point about representing smaller CTAs and CPOs, that I am a CTA with no money under management and I endorse Bry and Jaffarian. As I have been told many times, size is not everything. Just because Bry and Jaffarian are not “true peers” in Roe’s estimation, does not mean they do not understand or care about many of the costs of regulation and compliance that are hitting CTAs and CPOs.
I won’t quibble over who accomplished what. As Roe fairly points out, the decisions of the board are done collectively. Many people deserve credit. This is a how a properly functioning board works.
Last year, I did not endorse any candidates for the NFA election in the CTA/CPO category. But I did conduct a video interview with Roe and Koutoulas in my office, which gave them a huge advantage in media coverage over opponents. For the other non-Chicago candidates, I offered a video interview, but ended up interviewing those I could reach by phone. I either wrote a story or posted their position papers.
I believe Doug Bry and Ernest Jaffarian can best serve the interests of CTAs and CPOs on the Board of the NFA for the coming term. I thank Roe for his professional reply, Koutoulas for his threats and Bry and Jaffarian for earning my endorsement.
May the best candidates win.