Meet the Team – Business & Operations

Alyssa Romano
Chief Financial Officer & Chief Compliance Officer

Alyssa Romano

Chief Financial Officer & Chief Compliance Officer

Alyssa serves as Chief Financial Officer and Chief Compliance Officer at Pura Vida. Prior to joining in 2018, she worked at Arrowstreet Capital, a quantitative equity firm that manages global equity portfolios for institutional investors around the world. There she was the Partner in charge of the Fund Group, which was responsible for fund structuring, formation, launch and ongoing operations and administration of over 30 investment funds with $23 billion in assets under management. Prior to Arrowstreet, she was Vice President of Operations in the Alternative Investment Group at Bank of America, an Assistant Controller at TA Associates Realty and a Manager in the Alternative Investment Group at PwC. She received her M.S./M.B.A in Accounting from Northeastern University and is a CPA.

Melissa Balaban
Chief Operating Officer

Melissa Balaban

Chief Operating Officer

Melissa serves as Chief Operating Officer at Pura Vida. Prior to joining in 2021, she was the Director of IR and Marketing at ITE Management, an investment firm with $1.8 billion under management, specializing in industrial transportation related assets and companies. There she was responsible for managing the firm’s capital raising and investor relations effort and team. Prior to ITE, she was the Director of Marketing and IR at Pura Vida Investments for over 4 years. Melissa began her hedge fund career at Ospraie Management, a commodity and basic industry equity firm, where she was an Investor Relations and Marketing Associate.  Later, she moved to ParkRiver, a spin out of Ospraie Management’s non-investment team, where she was the Director of IR and Marketing. Prior to joining Ospraie, she served as a Research/Sales Associate in the Corporate Client Group at The NASDAQ Stock Market and as a Consultant in the Investment Management Division of FactSet Research Systems.  She received a B.S. from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

Anne Corey Ahl
Marketing & Investor Relations

Anne Corey Ahl

Marketing & Investor Relations

Anne leads Pura Vida’s marketing and investor relations efforts. Prior to joining in 2018, Anne worked in marketing and investor relations at GCM Grosvenor (f/k/a Credit Suisse CFIG), a diversified alternative asset management firm with $50 billion of assets under management. There, her work spanned the firm’s private equity, real estate and infrastructure businesses, managing clients including some of the largest public pensions in the United States, sovereign wealth funds, corporate pensions and other institutional investors. Prior to joining Grosvenor, Anne began her career as a Marketing Associate at GoldPoint Partners, a private equity firm with $13.5 billion of assets under management. She received a B.A. in English and Economics from Duke University and an M.B.A. from Columbia Business School.

Cara Bradfield
Controller

Cara Bradfield

Controller

Cara serves as Pura Vida’s Controller. Prior to joining Pura Vida in 2019, she worked at Arrowstreet Capital, a quantitative equity firm that manages global equity portfolios for institutional investors around the world. There she was a Manager responsible for the team, processes and network of service providers who facilitate the NAV production, financial reporting, and governance of a diverse portfolio of over 35 private investment funds valued at $30 billion in assets under management and serving 300+ global institutional investors. Prior to Arrowstreet, she was an Assistant Audit Manager in the Alternative Investment Group at KPMG in the Cayman Islands, where she oversaw the audits of dozens of private hedge funds, and an Audit Senior at KPMG, Tampa, where she audited SEC registrants and control environment implementation and testing processes. Cara received her M.S. in Accounting from the University of Florida and has been a Florida CPA since 2008.

Zach Canonico
Director of Operations

Zach Canonico

Director of Operations

Zach is Director of Operations at Pura Vida Investments. Before joining Pura Vida in 2020, Zach held a leadership role as Vice President of Portfolio Management Operations at AQR, a global quantitative investment firm with $150 billion of assets under management. Prior to that, he spent 10 years as Head of Portfolio Finance at Blue Ridge Capital, a long/short equity hedge fund with $9 billion of assets under management. Zach received a B.S. in finance from The Pennsylvania State University.

Sarah Elkin
People & Culture

Sarah Elkin

People & Culture

Sarah leads Pura Vida’s People and Culture, overseeing recruiting, selection, employee engagement and corporate social responsibility. Prior to joining in 2013, she worked with a healthcare equity research team at Diamondback Capital, a $5 billion multi-manager investment advisor, and at Sivik Global Healthcare, a dedicated healthcare hedge fund. Sarah received her M.S. from New York University in Human Resource Management and Development, with a concentration in Organizational Effectiveness, and is a SHRM-CP.

Matt Manno
Assistant Controller

Matt Manno

Assistant Controller

Matt is Assistant Controller at Pura Vida. Prior to joining the firm in 2021, Matt worked at ExodusPoint Capital Management, a multi-strategy hedge fund with over $13 billion of assets under management. At ExodusPoint he was a Senior Fund Accountant in charge of building out the fund accounting processes since the Fund’s launch in 2018. Prior to joining Exodus, Matt was an Assistant Vice President at Lloyds Securities Inc., where he focused on regulatory reporting, such as 15c3-1 daily net capital requirements. Matt started his career at EY as a Senior Associate in FSO Assurance.  Matt received his B.S. in Accounting from The University of Connecticut and has been a licensed CPA in New York since 2018.

Pedro Morais
Operations Manager

Pedro Morais

Operations Manager

Pedro is the Operations Manager at Pura Vida. Prior to joining the firm in 2021, Pedro was most recently the Operations Manager at JD Capital Management, a global volatility hedge fund based in Greenwich, CT, where he oversaw a team responsible for providing middle office support to the portfolio managers and execution traders, as well as assisted with all aspects of buy side trading. Before JD Capital, Pedro was the Senior Analyst with LYZ Capital Advisors, a global quantitative fund, from 2008 to 2010. Pedro received a B.A. in finance from Manhattanville College.

Jamie Somohano
Chief of Staff

Jamie Somohano

Chief of Staff

Jamie is Chief of Staff at Pura Vida, supporting all facets of the firm. She brings a decade of experience in financial services, having worked in various roles from the trading floor to managing publicity. Prior to joining in 2020, Jamie managed publicity at BNP Paribas and Point72 Asset Management for various economists and asset managers. At Point72, she gained experience on the trading floor, having successfully completed the CFA Institute’s Claritas® Investment program in support of Rubric Capital, Point72 Asset Management’s multi-strategy unit. Jamie began her career in research and sales, supporting the Chief Revenue Officer at Forbes Magazine. She received a B.A. from Fordham University in Communications and Media Studies.

Shirley Alvarez
Executive Assistant & Office Manager

Shirley Alvarez

Executive Assistant & Office Manager

Shirley is the Executive Assistant and Office Manager at Pura Vida. Prior to joining in 2021, she spent five years as an Executive Assistant/Performance Analyst at LCA Capital LLC, an investment family office based in New York City that manages the wealth of a prominent family in Latin America. With over ten years of experience in the financial sector, Shirley has a track record of strong performance in high-volume, high pressure environments. She received a B.B.A. in Marketing Management, with a concentration in Economics, from Zicklin School of Business at Baruch College.

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