Jeff Assaf - Founder, Senior Managing Director and CIO, ICG

Jeffrey Assaf is a Senior Managing Director as well as the Chief Investment Officer and Investment Committee Chairman of ICG Advisors. In addition to setting the firm’s strategic direction and managing client relationships, Mr. Assaf supervises all portfolio construction and modeling. Prior to founding ICG in 2009, Mr. Assaf was a Senior Managing Director of Bear Stearns and Head of its Investment Consulting Group from 1996 to 2008. From 1988 to 1996, Mr. Assaf was a Senior Vice President at Oppenheimer & Co. where he founded the Oppenheimer Consulting Group. He is a graduate of University of California, Irvine (B.A., Psychology) and University of Southern California (M.B.A., Emphasis in Finance). Mr. Assaf is a Certified Investment Management Analyst (CIMA), a designation awarded by the Investment Management Consultants Association (IMCA) in conjunction with the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. Mr. Assaf serves on the Boards of Directors for several non-profit organizations.

Michael Bennon, Managing Director, Stanford Global Projects Center

Michael Bennon is the Managing Director at the Stanford Global Projects Center, developing new initiatives for the GPC and managing its student programs and industry affiliations. Michael’s research areas of interest for the center and work experience are in Project Finance, Public Sector Finance, Project Organization Design, Project Risk Assessment and in institutional design for project procurement organizations. Michael teaches Global Project Finance to graduate students at Stanford University and a weekly Global Projects Seminar showcasing innovative projects and research in the infrastructure development sector. Prior to starting at Stanford, Michael served as a Captain in the US Army and US Army Corps of Engineers for five years, leading Engineer units, managing projects, and planning for infrastructure development in the United States, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Thailand. Michael received his MBA and MSc in Engineering from Stanford University and completed his undergraduate degree in Civil Engineering at the United States Military Academy at West Point.

Ron Biscardi, Chief Executive Officer, Context Capital Partners

Ron Biscardi is the Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Context Capital Partners, an investment alternatives specialist focused on seeding and overseeing funds in hedge fund, liquid alternatives and private equity sectors. At Context, he is responsible for overall firm management, including growth initiatives, strategic partnerships and investment activities. He has over 20 years of business management, strategy and investment experience across start-ups, hedge funds, private equity and asset management.

John Culbertson, Managing Director, Chief Investment Officer, Context Capital Partners

An industry veteran of more than 28 years, John’s experience encompasses trading, venture capital, asset allocation and hedge fund portfolio management. John is the Chief Investment Officer at Context Capital Partners. As CIO he is responsible for sourcing new investments and the oversight of the current portfolio. He is also Chairman of the Investment Committee.

Prior to assuming his current position with Context, John ran the investment committee and was Chief Investment Officer for a large family office where he oversaw a portfolio of hedge funds and was responsible for asset allocation decisions. In addition to his family office background, John was a founder of Gamma Investors, a venture capital fund that invested primarily in financial services technology companies. He spent the early years of his career in New York and London as a partner at Cooper Neff and Associates, a quantitative proprietary trading firm. At Cooper Neff he founded the London office and traded derivatives on fixed income, commodities and equities. That firm was sold to BNP Paribas in 1995 where John became an Executive Vice President, a position he held until 2000.

Among his extensive outside activities, John is chairman of the board of directors at Urban Promise, an innovative urban youth organization headquartered in the city of Camden NJ. John received his undergraduate degree in Business and Economics from Rutgers University and earned a Master of Liberal Arts, from the University of Pennsylvania.

Stephen L. Nesbitt, CEO, Cliffwater LLC 

Steve is CEO of Cliffwater LLC, an investment advisory firm specializing in alternative investments, including hedge funds, private equity, private debt, real assets, and real estate.  Prior to forming Cliffwater in 2004, Steve was a Senior Managing Director at Wilshire Associates where he led its consulting division and built its asset management business using a 'manager of manager' investment approach.  Steve started his career at Wells Fargo Investment Advisors, an early pioneer in index funds, where he developed and managed index funds.

Steve is recognized for a broad range of investment research.  His papers have appeared in the Financial Analysts Journal, The Journal of Portfolio Management, The Journal of Applied Corporate Finance, and The Journal of Alternative Investments.   His research has led to the creation of the Cliffwater BDC Index, measuring historical BDC performance, and the Cliffwater Direct Lending Index, measuring historical performance for direct middle market loans.  Information on those two indices can be found at www.BDCs.com and www.CliffwaterDirectLendingIndex.com.  Most recently, Steve has authored the book, Private Debt: Opportunities in Corporate Direct Lending, Wiley Finance (forthcoming).

Steve graduated summa cum laude, with a BA in Mathematics and Economics from Eisenhower College (Rochester Institute of Technology), and an MBA, with Distinction, from The Wharton School at The University of Pennsylvania.

Ted Seides, CFA, Host of Capital Allocators Podcast

Ted Seides, CFA is the Managing Partner of Hidden Brook Investments, an asset manager that works with a select number of clients seeking to employ the best investment frameworks and practices of investing learned over two decades of experience allocating capital to managers. Hidden Brook is focused on compounding capital for the long-term and marrying investment excellence with business sufficiency.

He is the host of Capital Allocators podcast (capitalallocatorspodcast.com) and serves on the Board of Directors and Advisory Boards of six investment organizations.

In February 2016, Ted authored the book So You Want to Start a Hedge Fund: Lessons for Managers and Allocators (Wiley).

From 2002 to 2015, Ted was a founder of Protégé Partners LLC and served as President and Co-Chief Investment Officer. Protégé was a leading multibillion dollar alternative investment firm that invested in small and specialized hedge funds on an arms-length and seed basis. Ted built the firm’s investment process and managed the sourcing, research, and due diligence of its portfolios. He worked actively with each of Protégé’s 40 seed investments. In 2010, Larry Kochard and Cathleen Ritterheiser profiled Ted in the book Top Hedge Fund Investors: Stories, Strategies, and Advice.

Ted began his career in 1992 under the tutelage of David Swensen at the Yale University Investments Office. During his five years at Yale, Ted focused on external public equity managers and internal fixed income portfolio management. Following business school, he spent two years investing directly at private equity firms Stonebridge Partners and J.H. Whitney & Company.

With aspirations to demonstrate the salutary benefits of hedge funds on institutional portfolios to a broad audience, Ted proposed a non-profitable wager with Warren Buffett that pitted the 10-year performance of the S&P 500 against a selection of five hedge fund of funds from 2008-2017.

Ted is a columnist for Institutional Investor and has written a blog for the CFA Institute’s Enterprising Investor, guest publications for the late Peter L. Bernstein’s Economics and Portfolio Strategy, and case studies for Harvard Business School Publishing.

Ted is a Trustee and member of the investment committee at the Wenner-Gren Foundation and is a Decade Rider of Cycle for Survival.

He holds a BA in economics and political science, Cum Laude, from Yale University and an MBA with first year honors from Harvard Business School.

Jane Wells, Special Correspondent, CNBC

Jane Wells is an award-winning broadcast journalist with over 30 years experience in the news media. She’s covered everything from earthquakes to riots, from the O.J. Simpson trial to Mother Teresa’s funeral, from the massacre at Columbine to the 2008 financial collapse. She has questioned CEOs about poor business decisions, driven a bulldozer on live television, posed as a prostitute for a story on AIDS, appeared in the “Seinfeld” finale, and even got a hangover—on purpose—to test out the best cures.
More than anything, Jane loves a good story. She specializes in making people feel comfortable, drawing out their most personal and revealing thoughts. Using humor and a healthy balance of empathy and skepticism, Jane’s work stands out in a noisy media landscape. 

Wells has won a Peabody and DuPont award for her part in KTTV’s live coverage of the Rodney King trial, along with several local news Emmys. In 2000, she transitioned from a career in general news to covering business and the markets for CNBC. 

These days Jane remains a CNBC Special Correspondent, where she works on special on-air stories. She is also the reporter for CNBC.com’s “Strange Success” franchise. In Los Angeles, she regularly fills in at KFIAM640, the highest rated talk radio station in the west. In her free time, she produces story-telling promotional videos for non-profits like the Salvation Army.
Jane is also a regular speaker and moderator for events which have a financial or business focus, and she mentors women about succeeding in media.<

Surprise Guest, US Secret Service Special Agent

Our surprise guest has been a Special Agent with the U.S. Secret Service for 18 years and has been conducting computer forensic examinations for 9 years.  He spent 5 years permanently assigned in a protection capacity to the White House and is currently a member of the USSS Los Angeles Electronic Crimes Task Force (ECTF).  He formed a partnership with the Huntington Beach Police Department and spends most days in their high-tech crime lab with other forensic members of the police department.  Recently, the Los Angeles ECTF received the highest honor of law enforcement computer forensic labs, mainly due to partnerships with local police departments like Huntington Beach and Beverly Hills.  Last fiscal year, he completed over 90 forensic examinations which included over 26 TB of memory.  These examinations involved the core violations that the U.S. Secret Service investigates, to include manufacturing counterfeit currency, identity theft, credit card fraud and network intrusions.  He has received extensive training in the identification and manufacturing of genuine and counterfeit currency at the USSS Training Facility in Beltsville, Maryland as well as training at the Crane Paper Company in Crane Massachusetts, and the Bureau of Engraving and Printing in Washington DC.  He has also been the lead case agent in over 100 counterfeit currency investigations, including the largest offset counterfeit Federal Reserve Note in the United States at the time.  He has made over 50 federal and state arrests in investigations involving counterfeit currency and testified in numerous federal and state trials as an expert witness.


Context Family Network is dedicated to uniting families in a safe, collaborative environment to support leadership, professional development and philanthropy.

Single Member Package
Package includes:

Registration for a single member of a qualified family office

All cocktail events and meals

Access to activities listed on the agenda

Attendance to all sessions, panels and roundtables

Reduced room rate within hotel block

Group Member Package
Package for both members includes:

Registration for 2 members for the same qualified family office

All cocktail events and meals

Access to activities listed on the agenda

Attendance to all sessions, panels and roundtables

Reduced room rate within hotel block

* Airfare and hotel accommodations are not included