Former Florida Congressman Readies Hedge Fund

Oct 19 2011 | 11:26am ET

Former Rep. Alan Grayson (D-Fla.) is taking his extensive experience with financial markets and the global economy and channeling it in a new business: asset management.

Grayson’s new firm—aptly named The Grayson Fund Management Company—is gearing up to launch its first hedge fund. The vehicle will employ a global, deep value strategy, taking mostly long positions, primarily in emerging markets.

Todd Jurkowski, vice president of investor relations, told FINalternatives that Grayson’s extensive experience, both in Washington and around the world, as well as his background as an economist, gives him a unique perspective that is all too rare in the asset management world.

“Alan has a story unlike any other emerging manager,” said Jurkowski. “He knows the markets, he knows the Fed, he’s been to more than 190 countries, and in addition he has traded over $200 million from his own accounts.”

In addition to Grayson and Jurkowski, the Orlando, Fla.-based firm is aiming to bring on five more employees by year-end, and is also looking to hire a third-party marketer.

NorthPoint ConvergEx Group is serving at the fund’s prime broker, and G&S Fund Services as its administrator.

From The Bronx To Cambridge To Congress

Grayson served as U.S. Representative for Florida's 8th congressional district from 2009 until 2011, when he lost the election to Republican Dan Webster. During his time in office, he served on the Financial Services Committee, as well as the Subcommittees on Capital Markets and on Oversight and Investigations. But, the Bronx native wasn’t always focused on politics.

In his early days, Grayson hit the books hard, studying law, economics and government. He earned three degrees from Harvard: a bachelor’s degree from Harvard University in only three years; a J.D. with honors from Harvard Law School, and a master’s degree from the Harvard School of Government.

In the early 1990s, Grayson took leave from the practice of law, joining with others to start a telecom/internet company—IDT Corp. The business, which began modestly on the second floor of a funeral home, grew to become a $2 billion-a-year firm, making the Fortune 1000 list and trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

Later, Grayson decided to leave that business and return to the practice of law. He began to represent whistleblowers, including those who witnessed fraud against the government, and famously won a case against a contractor that employed individuals who profited illegally from the war in Iraq. To date, that case remains the only successful prosecution of those who profited illegally from the war in Iraq.

Grayson lives in Orlando with his wife and five children.


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