Our Team

EXECUTIVE

Steven A. Baffico - Managing Partner & Chief Executive Officer

Mr. Baffico has been a senior leader in financial services for more than fifteen years across a variety of roles and is widely recognized as one of the industry’s top young talents.  Prior to founding Four Wood Capital Partners in November 2011, he held executive management positions at firms including Guggenheim Partners and BlackRock.  At Guggenheim Investments (2010-2011), Mr. Baffico was Senior Managing Director & Head of the Private Client Group, overseeing all aspects of the investment management and distribution businesses, responsible for more than $27 billion in assets under management and or supervision.  Formerly, he spent more than a decade (1998-2010) at BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager, where he worked in various senior leadership capacities across sales, marketing, portfolio management, product development, investment banking and capital markets.  He was named one of the youngest Managing Directors in BlackRock’s history and regularly to many industry top ten lists.

At these predecessor firms, Mr. Baffico and his previous teams were responsible for more than 50 successful IPO’s of publicly traded investment and specialty finance companies with total assets of more than $50 billion.   Therein, Mr. Baffico’s experience in serving retail, high net worth and institutional clients across both public and private sectors has made Four Wood Capital Partners one of the most highly sought after domain experts in the asset management and permanent capital fields.  He is also a frequent contributor to the financial media across print, web, radio, television and other mediums.

Mr. Baffico currently serves on the Board of Directors for Four Wood Capital Advisors’ family of registered funds and specialty finance companies.  In addition, he is the Executive Chairman of Four Wood Marine Advisors LLC, FWCP’s participating affiliate focused on specialty lending and investment banking within the global maritime industry.  Externally, Mr. Baffico serves on the Board of Directors for Clean Play, a non-profit organization founded by former MLB All-Star Royce Clayton in conjunction with Major League Baseball (MLB) and the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU)  focused on the elimination of performance-enhancing drugs in youth sports.

Mr. Baffico is SEC Series 7 and FINRA Series 24 and 63 registered and has a B.A. degree from the University of Wisconsin.

Jennifer M. Wilson - Managing Partner & Chief Financial Officer

Ms. Wilson has over a fifteen years of industry experience at leading global firms.  She spent more than ten years working for the Investment Banking Group of Merrill Lynch and Bank of America.  While working in the Financial Institutions Group, she advised asset management companies and specialty finance companies on both capital raising transactions and merger/acquisition transactions.  Additionally, Ms. Wilson worked for the COO organization, where her roles ranged from managing the Telecom, Media & Technology division to implementing special projects related to Bank of America’s acquisition of Merrill Lynch.  Previously, Ms. Wilson was a Manager with Deloitte & Touche where she provided assurance and advisory services to Fortune 500 clients.

At Four Wood Capital, Jennifer is a member of the Board of Managers and serves as the firm’s Chief Financial Officer, overseeing the investment banking and structuring activities for the firm’s permanent capital business pertaining to advisory and distribution relationships with third-party asset managers.

Ms. Wilson graduated magna cum laude from University of California, Los Angeles with a BA in Business Economics and earned a Masters of Business Administration from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business.  She also holds a CPA and FINRA licenses 7 and 63.

ORIGINATION & FUND SERVICES

William G. McCoy

Bill McCoy joined Four Wood Capital Partners in December 2012 serves as the Chief Operating Officer of FWCP.  At FWCP, he is focused on relationship management, firm operations & capital market activities. Bill has over 30 years of experience in various executive-level positions across equity and debt capital markets at tier-one brokerage and bank-owned brokerage firms with extensive background in managing, building and restructuring business units.

Prior to joining Four Wood Capital Partners, he was a Managing Director at Merrill Lynch Wealth Management / Bank of America where he headed the Capital Markets business in the Bank of America Investment Services division within Global Wealth Management.  Previously, he headed the Equity New Issue Desk within Capital Markets and managed corporate client relationships and directed share programs at Citigroup/Smith Barney. In addition, he spent three years in the financial advisory business while at Smith Barney. Bill started his career at Lehman Brothers in 1979.

Mr. McCoy holds a Bachelor of Science from State University College at Brockport and is a Graduate of the Wharton School Securities Industry Institute. He holds FINRA licenses Series 7, 24 and 63.

Stephanie Trell

Ms. Trell joins Four Wood Capital Partners currently serves as the Head of Retail Origination, bringing over twenty years of industry experience in asset management and sell-side capital markets expertise.  Previously, Stephanie spent seven years at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, where she was an executive in charge of closed-end fund product development, execution and new issue syndicate across the equity capital market space for ML’s Wealth Management Group.  Formerly, she was an executive with Citi – Smith Barney, overseeing the firm’s retail equity capital markets operations in a similar domain.  In her career, she has performed diligence, structured and a raised over 60 permanent capital funds totally over $50 billion invested assets.

Ms. Trell holds a BA in Economics from the University of Connecticut and holds Series 7, 63, 24 and 79.  She is also actively involved in the Women’s Syndicate Association.

Vladimir Kostour, Ph.D

Vladimir Kostour joined Four Wood Capital Partners, LLC from BNP Paribas Investment Partners where he was an Assistant Portfolio Manager in the Global Credit team with $29 billion in assets under management. Vladimir Kostour has 15 years of front-office experience in investment and asset management. Mr. Kostour joined Fortis Investments/BNP Paribas in 2004 from Jefferies & Co., Inc. where he was an Associate in the investment banking team that was responsible for underwriting and structuring a variety of leveraged loan products. Prior to Jefferies, Mr. Kostour was an Assistant Vice President in Structured Credit at AIG-Financial Products for 1999-2002. He began his investment-professional career as a fixed income analyst at Phoenix Trading (hedge fund) in 1997. Mr. Kostour holds Ph.D. in Statistical Physics from Kiev University, Ukraine. He was a postdoctoral fellow sponsored by NASA at the University of Maryland, College Park, MD and sponsored by Research Foundation of NY at SUNY-Stony Brook, NY.

Andrew Y. Park

Mr. Park primarily operates in the Origination and Investment Banking (OIB) group with responsibilities including origination, product structuring, sales management, marketing and business development.  Since joining Four Wood Capital Partners in September 2011 as a founding member, Mr. Park has been responsible for performing manager due diligence and structuring a variety of products including 40 Act funds and limited partnerships.

In addition, he has been responsible for oversight of the firm’s sales efforts including the capital raising efforts for over $1.5B raised in managed assets in wire house and regionally syndicated CEF IPOs (SMM, KIO, TSLF, HIE, & EGIF) and approximately $500mm in mutual funds.

Mr. Park works closely with the firm’s Chief Compliance Officer on compliance matters as it relates to FWCP, FWCA, and FWCP’s broker-dealer relationships. Also, he currently serves as the Chairman of the Business Continuity Committee and Chief Technology Officer for FWCP and its subsidiaries.

Mr. Park currently holds FINRA Series 7 & 63 licenses.

Efthymios Efthymiou

Efthymios joined Four Wood Capital in September 2012 in the Origination and Banking Group. His responsibilities include investment research, thought leadership development, sales support for open-end funds and IPOs, marketing and business development.  Previous to Four Wood Capital, Efthymios worked as an Analyst at Stratum Capital Advisors, a long/short strategy hedge fund.  Mr. Efthymiou holds a B.S. in Engineering with a major in Financial and Management Engineering from the Aegean University, Greece and earned his Masters in Business Administration from St. John’s University, New York. He is fluent in Greek and English.

Nicholas P. Ratti

Mr. Ratti currently sits in the Origination and Investment Banking (OIB) group with responsibilities including origination, sales support, marketing, and business development.  He joined Four Wood Capital Partners in June 2014 and has aided in the distribution efforts of the Miller/Howard High Income Equity & Eagle Growth and Income Opportunities closed-end fund IPO’s as well as the acquisition of the Blue Marlin Salt Water Disposal Well.

Mr. Ratti is a CFA Candidate and has a B.S. in Corporate Finance and a B.S. in Economics from Clemson University.

Four Wood Marine Advisors

Andrew J. Simmons

Andrew J. Simmons is the Chief Executive Officer of Four Wood Marine Advisors Ltd (“FWMA”) and has supervisory responsibility across structuring and underwriting activity of Global Marine Transport Capital’s (“the Company”) senior secured lending activity, as well as overseeing internal risk management activities for the Company.  He serves as a member of the Four Wood Marine Advisors Credit Committee as well as a member of the Four Wood Marine Advisors Management Board.

Mr. Simmons joined Four Wood Marine Advisors in October 2014 and has over 30 years of experience in the banking industry, with particular expertise in shipping finance dating back to 1973.  He is well-known and widely respected across shipping finance markets globally, having served in key C-Suite roles for publicly traded companies and high profile organizations in Europe and the Middle East for many years.  Previously, Mr. Simmons served as Chief Financial Officer of StealthGas Inc., one of the largest publicly-traded LNG carriers in the world (2005 – 20011), Vice President & Head of European Sales for Inchcape Shipping Services, UK (2011 -2013), Head of Credit Reports for Lloyd’s List Intelligence (2011) and Director of Shipping Finance for Heath Lambert in Dubai and Bahrain (2002 – 2005).  Prior to joining FWMA, most recently Mr. Simmons served as CFO and Treasurer of SuperEco Tankers Ltd (2013- 2014), a well-known transport concern out of Piraeus, Greece.

Lily Kondakou

Lily Kondakou is an Assistant Vice President at Four Wood Marine Advisors Ltd and Global Marine Transport Capital Ltd., (“the Company”) where she is responsible for overseeing loan support services including correspondent banking and risk management activities, loan documentation, loan processing and surveillance as well as treasury management services.  Prior to joining FWMA in November 2014, Ms. Kondakou had worked for over 15 years in administration, accounting and shipping finance sectors for major global financial institutions.  Most recently, she managed the Commerzbank – Deutsche Schiffsbank AG Rep Office in Athens, Greece (2006 – 2014) where her responsibilities included a broad variety of tasks including administration of client accounts, client interface, loan book match-reporting, accounting and correspondent banking activities for a portfolio of over 100 borrowers across shipping and real estate sectors with over $1 billion of senior secured loans outstanding.

Previously, Ms. Kondakou also worked for America International Company Ltd (AIG) (2003 – 2005), Grant Thornton S.A. Chartered Accountants (2002 – 2003) and Euroget Technologies (2000 – 2002).  Lily is fluent in English, French, German and Greek and holds a Bachelor of Arts & Sciences from Florida International University in Miami, FL (1991).

Nicholas Dracoulis

Mr. Dracoulis is Chief Technical Officer of Four Wood Marine Advisors. Within the Company’s senior secured lending operation, Mr. Dracoulis’ responsibilities and expertise include assessing and monitoring the performance of clients, including matters relating to the vessels chartering arrangements and operations, as well as the vessels’ technical condition, periodical valuations and insurance arrangements, in cooperation with leading marine surveyors, shipbrokers, and insurance consultants appointed by the Company. Mr. Dracoulis comes from a traditional Greek shipping family, educated in England and Switzerland, developing his shipping expertise in London and Monaco. He has worked in the shipping industry for almost 50 years, and his expertise and status have been recognized by users of the London Maritime Arbitrators’ Association, for whom he has acted as an expert witness on matters of ship management and operation. Mr. Dracoulis has owned and operated a proprietary fleet of vessels for seventeen years, and knows the practices and all aspects of the shipping industry intimately.

Dimitri Andonatos

Dimitri is the Chief Operating Officer of Global Marine Transport Capital. and has supervisory responsibilities across account management, origination, and transaction sourcing, structuring and loan execution within the GMTC’s senior secured lending operation. Dimitri was educated in England at Westminster School and Oxford University and after working for one year in his family shipping firm, joined Credit Suisse First Boston as an investment banker. He was then recruited into the Shipping Division of Bankers Trust Company (now part of Deutsche Bank) and thereafter joined Nordic Bank, London (which subsequently became Den norske Bank). He has financed over 800 vessels over a 20 year banking career and has an extensive list of shipping contacts, having successfully dealt with over 160 clients worldwide.  More recently he was Finance Director of two shipping companies in Piraeus.

Bill Abrams

Bill Abrams joined Four Wood Capital Markets in 2016 to lead its maritime investment banking effort.  Prior to joining Four Wood, Bill ran the shipping investment banking group at Wunderlich Securities.  Previously Bill was a Managing Director at DVB Bank from 2005- 2011 where he established and ran DVB’s capital markets group which was focused on capital raising for maritime, aviation and rail companies.

From 2002 – 2005, Bill served as a Senior Vice President at the Air Transportation Stabilization Board, a U.S.-government sponsored loan program established to provide financing to airlines negatively impacted by the events of September 11th.  From 1993-2001, Bill was a member of the investment banking group at Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette and Credit Suisse where he originated, structured and executed over 50 offerings of high-yield debt and equity securities.  Bill started his career in 1990 as an Associate with the law firm Latham & Watkins.

Bill holds a BA in Economics from Johns Hopkins University and a JD/MBA from the University of Chicago.

Four Wood Capital Markets

David M. Caruso

David is a Senior Managing Director with Four Wood Capital Markets (“FWCM”) through its joint venture with Tigress Financial Partners (“TFP”). Mr. Caruso brings more than twenty-five years of executive experience across global capital markets in investment banking and securities to the FWCM-TFP joint venture and has deep subject matter expertise in the build-out and management of Broker Dealers and RIA’s.  Mr. Caruso also has significant cross-border experience in investment banking, trading and sales, as well as asset management.

Prior to Tigress Mr. Caruso served as the CEO for Strong City Advisors LLC as an SEC Registered Investment Advisor providing business advisory services to asset management and capital market firms including Christian Brothers Investment Services, Ping An Securities and Ustocktrade Securities. He later became the President of UST. Previously, Mr. Caruso, founder Strong City Securities LLC., served as Head of Investment Banking and provided leadership for the strategic M&A Advisory and Capital formation to the Financial Services, Technology, Commercial Real Estate and Socially Responsible Sectors. Mr. Caruso negotiated the sale of Strong City Securities to the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, which became the first Chinese-owned US Broker Dealer rebranded ICBC.

Formerly, David was the President and CEO at Fortis Securities, the US broker-dealer for Fortis Bank and Nikko Securities International Americas as Group Executive Vice President, where he managed a variety of business development, proprietary trading, prime brokerage, and institutional sales activities.   Mr. Caruso holds Series 24, 55, 79 & 87 licenses and earned a BS and Executive MBA degrees in Business Administration from NYU.

Randall Miles

Mr. Miles is a Senior Managing Director with Four Wood Capital Markets (“FWCM”) through its joint venture with Tigress Financial Partners (“TFP”). For over 25 years Mr. Miles has held senior global leadership positions in financial services, financial technology and investment banking companies.  His extensive investment banking background at bulge bracket, regional and boutique firms, advising companies on strategic and financial needs has crossed many disciplines including fixed income, equities, corporate finance and M&A with deep focus in financial technology specialty finance, banking, software and business services.  Mr. Miles’ transactional and advisory experience is complemented by leadership of public and private equity backed financial technology, specialty finance and software companies that have included Chairman & CEO of LIONMTS where he was nominated for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year award and which required a complete restructuring of the company’s business model, CEO at Syngence Corporation and CEO at Advantage Funding / NAFCO Holdings which grew to in excess of $1 billion in size.  Prior to joining the FWCM-TFP joint venture, Mr. Miles was Senior Managing Director, Chief Operating Officer and Head of FIG in the Investment Banking Group at Cantor Fitzgerald & Co. Mr. Miles has broad public, private and nonprofit board experience and has been active for many years in leadership roles with the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Mr. Miles holds a BBA from the University of Washington and holds FINRA licenses Series 7, 24, 63 and 79.

Matthew Bergin

Four Wood Energy Partners

Jerry Bastain

Jerry brings more than 30 years of oil and gas experience with a focus on operations and land/lease acquisitions to Four Wood Energy Partners. Throughout a diverse career in the industry, Mr. Bastian has successfully structured Salt Water Disposal and Fresh Water Aquifer Leases — assessing the needs of the company’s goals through landowner lease compliance. Jerry has also structured drillable exploration and production prospects — assessing the needs of company goals through landowner lease compliance.

He has performed complete land functions for exploration/development wells consisting of preparing Joint Operating Agreements, Joint Interest Billing, Revenue Reports, Unitization Agreements, Areas of Mutual Interest (AMI), Farm-in/Farm-out Agreements as well as Broker Supervision/Lease Acquisition. Land and Easement Acquisition and Title Curative. As well, Jerry has performed Due Diligence, Title Examination, Surface and Sub-Surface Field Title Work, Acquisition/Divestures and Overriding Royalty Purchases.

Mr. Bastian has also managed the development of pipelines/electric transmission lines by identifying the route selection, title preparation, acquisition of rights of way, and curative of all easements acquired and management of the process, procedures and human resources required, thus insuring the successful completion of construction on said lines.

Chris Kennedy

Mr. Tirey was born and raised in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. After completing his undergraduate studies, he went to work for Hunt Energy Corporation, Dallas, Texas as a Landman out of their Bismarck, North Dakota district office. While working for Hunt, Mr. Tirey received extensive experience in all aspects of land work which enabled him to establish a successful independent practice in 1979. Mr. Tirey then started his own brokerage firm in Williston, North Dakota working with various oil companies with their land work throughout the Williston Basin.

In 1981 he founded Strata Minerals, Inc. and continued for a short time doing brokerage work for select institutional clients, and then began putting his own deals together buying and selling leases, minerals, overriding royalty interests, working interests, surface and participating in wells. In 1991 he moved back to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and now currently resides in Edmond, Oklahoma where he has continued investing in oil and gas mineral deals with Mr. Shawn P. Hannifin and Mr. Bob Desmond.

Mr. Tirey has over 30 years’ experience in all phases of oil and gas acquisitions, and has worked nearly every major play in the United States since 1981, including plays in Oklahoma, Kansas, North Dakota, Montana, Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas to name a few. He has also invested in numerous other ventures outside the oil and gas business throughout the years which have given him invaluable business experiences.

Mr. Tirey received his Bachelor in Business Administration degree in Petroleum Land Management from the University of Oklahoma in 1978 and is a member of the American Association of Petroleum Landmen and the Oklahoma City Association of Petroleum Landmen.

Shaun Rima

Shaun brings with him over 18 years of experience in the oil and natural gas construction business and has installed pipelines and gathering systems in most of the major plays in North America.  The past 14 years, he has worked specifically on pipeline and gathering system construction.  Shaun has worked in nearly every aspect of the pipeline and gathering system process, from planning and permitting through to installation and continued system maintenance and up-keep.  Through various positions at marquee companies like Fiberspar, Shaun has overseen pipeline and gathering system projects for most major operators in the area, including Marathon Petroleum, Continental Resources, WPX Energy, ConocoPhilips and Exxon Mobil.

Financial Institutions Group

John Morale

Mr. Morale brings a long and distinguished track record to FWCP in his role as Head of Financial Institutions Group.  Prior to Four Wood Capital, John was with Scotia Bank for over twenty years, most recently as the most senior Financial Service Industry Officer based in the United States.  At Scotia Bank, Mr. Morale was responsible for all business development, origination, risk management, securitization and loan syndication activities for Scotiabank’s Financial Service Industry platform in the United States, Bermuda, the Pacific Rim, and the European Union. Prior to joining Scotiabank, Mr. Morale was a Senior Financial Analyst at The Federal Reserve Bank of New York and has more than 27 years of banking experience exclusively in the Financial Service space.

At FWCP, John’s responsibilities including working closely with the Board of Managers in assessing various transactions, deal structures, distribution and syndication opportunities across the platform as well as leading the outside capital raising endeavors for the firm.

Jim Trimble

Jim is currently responsible for leading all credit related transactions within Four Wood Energy Partner’s while also assisting with capital raising.  Jim joined the Four Wood team in 2015 following a 30 year career with The Bank of Nova Scotia in Toronto, New York and Sydney, Australia.  At Scotiabank, Jim’s primary focus was managing the Bank’s relationships with large corporate clients across several industries.  In 2004, Jim was appointed Co-Chair of Scotia’s Global Power & Utility Business where he developed lending and cross sell strategy and led a global team of relationship managers.  In 2011, he was named Country Head for Australia with responsibility for a multi-billion dollar loan portfolio with a concentration in Energy, Mining, and Commodities.  Jim earned a B.A. degree from Northwestern University and a M.B.A from McGill University.

Marion Patterson

Marion Patterson was Head of Intermediary and Sub Advisory marketing at BNP Paribas Investment Partners in New York from 2010-2015. He built and led the Firm’s strategic distribution efforts among the leading mutual fund, variable annuity, and wealth management platforms who dominate retail distribution in North America. Marion was previously responsible for institutional marketing at Stone Tower Capital Management, a leading credit fund manager in New York. Earlier, he was a fundraising executive at Highland Capital Management, responsible for Senior Debt, Private Equity, Distressed Debt, CLO’s and High Yield strategies.

His career includes 13 years as a leader in Loan Syndication and Leveraged Finance. He was Head of Loan Trading at Royal Bank of Canada and, earlier, was a senior member of Citigroup’s Loan Syndication team. He began his corporate finance career with JP Morgan in 1985.

Marion Patterson received his MBA from Vanderbilt University in 1981, and graduated Magna Cum Laude from Appalachian State University in 1979.  He is a resident of New York City and an active member of the University Club of New York and Vanderbilt Alumni Association.

DISTRIBUTION

National Distribution Team

Since 2011, FWCP’s 25+ field directors have raised more than $3 billion in gross sales of registered funds in the major wirehouse and smaller national channels. Learn More

SENIOR ADVISORS

J. Richard T. Blackett - Capital Markets, Energy & Shipping

Mr. Blackett brings over 40 years of industry experience to Four Wood Capital Partners in his role as Senior Advisor for Financial Services.  Having served in numerous ECM and investment banking senior leadership roles at Salomon Bros – Citigroup dating back to 1983, his most recent responsibilities from ‘97-’13 included Head of Citigroup’s International Equity Capital Markets, as he was responsible for all non-US issuers accessing US markets with a sector concentration in Metals & Mining, Shipping and Manufacturing.  Mr. Blackett has extensive experience across Initial Public Offerings, Follow-On Offerings, Monetizations, Rights Offerings, Convertibles US Listing, Block Trades, Warrants, Dual Listings and Mandatories across countries / regions including the US, Canada, Hong Kong, China, Mongolia, UK, Europe, Brazil, Mexico, Japan, Korea, Columbia, Chile, Peru, Southeast Asia, India, Emerging Europe, South Africa, Australia and Frontier Markets.

At Four Wood Capital, Mr. Blackett serves as a Senior Advisor Emeritus in assisting the leadership and operating teams assess transactions, structures, distribution and syndication opportunities.