Speakers

Keynote Speakers

Richard AldermanRichard M. Alderman
Associate Dean
Director, Consumer Law Center
Dwight Olds Chair in Law
Univeristy of Houston Law Center

Richard M. Alderman earned his B.A. from Tulane University in 1968 and attended Syracuse University Law School, where he was graduated first in his class. After a year practicing poverty law with a legal service office, he attended the University of Virginia Law School and was awarded a Master of Law degree.

Dean Alderman has been a faculty member at the University of Houston Law Center since 1973. He is currently the Associate Dean and holder of the Dwight Olds Chair in Law. He also serves as the director of the Center for Consumer Law. Dean Alderman is a prolific author who has authored 20 books and numerous articles. His most recent publications include Consumer Credit and The Law, Consumer Protection and The Law, Texas Consumer Law: Cases and Materials, and The Lawyers Guide to the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act. He also authored the 7th edition of Know Your Rights!, and the 2nd edition of Your Texas Business, for the layperson. Professor Alderman serves as the Editor-in-Chief of "The Journal of Commercial and Consumer Law," the quarterly newsletter of the Consumer Law Section of the State Bar of Texas. In 2007 Dean Alderman was awarded the University of Houston’s Teaching Excellence Award.

In addition to his responsibilities at the Law Center, Dean Alderman appears regularly as the "People's Lawyer" on radio, television and the newspaper. He currently appears on KTRK-TV, Channel 13 and has a syndicated newspaper column, entitled "Know Your Rights." Professor Alderman has twice received the highest honor given by the American Bar Association and the State Bar of Texas for his work in educating the public about the law. In 1999 the Mayor and City Council of Houston declared October 16th as Richard Alderman day in recognition of his contribution to the city.

Thursday, October 4 - Plenary Speech - 9:00-9:55
"Know Your Rights – It's All About the Money!"
In today's market place being an effective consumer requires more than just being a savvy shopper. To insure you get what you pay for and don't get ripped-off, you must also know a little bit about the law. And that includes the law of consumer finance, such as consumer loans, credit cards, debit cards and debt collection.

Thursday, October 4 - Concurrent Breakout Session III, Track 2 - 2:55-3:55
"Consumer Arbitration/Debt Collection Issues"
Whether it is a deal gone bad or the inability to pay, today's consumers sometimes find themselves faced with the prospect of going to court. This discussion looks at how your right to use the court system is being limited, and what you can do to stay out of court when a debt collector comes a calling.

 

Tahira HiraDr. Tahira K. Hira
Professor & Senior Policy Advisor to the President
Iowa State University

Dr. Tahira K. Hira, Senior Policy Adviser to the President at Iowa State University and a professor of Personal Finance and Consumer Economics, is internationally known as a leader in the field of Personal Finance and Consumer Economics. She has served as the Executive Assistant to the President, Associate Vice Provost for ISU Extension and has taught and conducted research in family financial management, investing, consumer credit, gambling and consumer bankruptcy in the United States and abroad. Dr. Hira received B.A. and M.A. degrees in Economics from Punjab University, Pakistan, and an M.S. in Agricultural Economics in 1973, and a Ph.D. in 1976 in Family and Consumer Economics from the University of Missouri-Columbia. She joined Iowa State University in 1980.

Current financial crisis has clearly shown that family financial wellbeing is strongly tied to the national financial wellbeing. It has also shown that financial decisions made by a large number of people were flawed, and that most individuals and families were not well equipped to deal with changing economic circumstances and maintain financially secure future for their families and businesses. In a time of continuing and global financial crisis and polarizing viewpoints, we must promote and support an ethical and sustainable approach to financial behavior. Current times demand a revolution in thought, as well as new ways of handling our financial resources.

Reactions from experts to this recent financial crisis have been mixed. Some are calling for more regulations and more default options that will result in shifting decision making in important areas such as saving and investing for long term goals to the employer or government. Others believe that we must educate, inform, enable and empower people to make sustainable financial decisions.

Following two sessions have been designed to discuss specific approach to handling personal and or family finances:

Thursday, October 4 - Lunch Presentation:
"Individuals and Families Securing Long-Term Financial Wellbeing: Who is in Charge?" •  View Presentation (pdf)
How to secure long term financial wellbeing of individuals and families and who is in charge? Factors influencing financial matters and behaviors can be grouped in two major categories - external or macro factors and internal or micro factors. This session will focus on identifying the internal factors that are in control of an individual and how individuals can take specific steps to not only protect their financial situation from the adverse effects of ever changing external environment but also to enhance their financial status. According to financial socialization research financial behavior is influenced by values, attitudes, environment and experiences. This presentation aims to address questions such as - What is sustainable financial behavior? Why the need for sustainable financial behavior now? Who is in charge of securing long term financial well being of all Americans? What is involved in developing and implementing a sustainable approach to managing finances? What specific steps can each of us take to secure our long-term financial wellbeing.

Thursday, October 4 - Concurrent Breakout Session II, Track 3 - 1:25-2:25
"Developing a Personalized Investment Portfolio to Meet Long-Term Financial Goals" •  View Presentation (pdf)
Steps in the process of developing a personalized investment portfolio to meet long term financial goals This session will focus on key features of investing so that we can make our financial dreams a reality. Specifically this session will address important issues including basic principles of investing, investment risks, risk return relationship, investment approaches, what to buy, when to buy, time value of money, and steps in the development of personalized investment portfolio to meet short and long term financial needs over the life cycle.

 

Holly PetraeusHolly Petraeus
Assistant Director, Servicemember Affairs
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

Holly Petraeus is an Assistant Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), heading up the Office of Servicemember Affairs. Her office’s mission is to partner with the Pentagon to see that military families receive strong financial education; to monitor their complaints to the CFPB; and to coordinate efforts of federal and state agencies regarding consumer protection measures for military families.

Prior to joining the CFPB, Mrs. Petraeus spent six years as the Director of BBB Military Line, a program of the Council of Better Business Bureaus providing consumer education and advocacy for servicemembers and their families. In that role, she oversaw a national program that worked with the Department of Defense as a partner in the DoD Financial Readiness Campaign and fostered outreach from the 120 local Better Business Bureaus to military communities across the United States.

A military spouse of 37 years and a former Department of the Army civilian employee, Mrs. Petraeus also has extensive experience as a volunteer leader in military family programs. In that role she has worked with local, state and national legislators on issues affecting Army families.

Mrs. Petraeus is a summa cum laude graduate of Dickinson College in Carlisle, PA and a member of Phi Beta Kappa. She was granted an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from the University of San Francisco in May 2012 and an honorary Doctor of Public Service degree from Methodist University in Fayetteville, NC in May 2011. She is a recipient of the Department of Defense Medal for Distinguished Public Service, the Department of the

Thursday, October 4 - Plenary Speech - 7:00pm
America's Military Consumer Watchdog - On Patrol Protecting All Who Serve
Experts from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will unveil efforts to protect the financial well-being of servicemembers, veterans, and their families. This informative discussion will enlighten you about efforts to improve military financial education, financial products & services being offered to military personnel, as well as fraud, scams and rip-offs targeting those who serve.

 

Lori StiegelLori Stiegel
Senior Attorney
American Bar Association Commission on Law and Aging

Lori Stiegel, Senior Attorney, joined the American Bar Association Commission on Law and Aging staff in 1989. Since that time she has, among other things, developed and directed all of the Commission’s work on elder abuse. She is the author or a co-author of numerous books, manuals, curricula, and articles including:

  • Power of Attorney Abuse: What States Can Do About It – A Comparison of Current State Laws with the New Uniform Power of Attorney Act (2008);
  • Elder Abuse Detection and Intervention: A Collaborative Approach (Springer, 2007);
  • "Undue Influence: The Criminal Justice Response" (YWCA of Omaha, 2006);
  • "Elder Abuse in the State Courts -- Three Curricula for Judges and Court Staff" (ABA, 1997); and
  • Recommended Guidelines for State Courts Handling Cases Involving Elder Abuse (ABA 1995).
Lori was a member of the National Research Council’s Study Panel on the Risk and Prevalence of Elder Abuse, which produced the seminal report Elder Mistreatment: Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation in an Aging America.

Friday, October 5 - Plenary Session - 9:00-10:00
"Elder Abuse: Causing Physical and Financial Devastation" •  View Presentation (ppt)
Abuse, neglect, and exploitation of older persons significantly increases the risk of mortality; often tears families apart; and costs victims, their families, and taxpayers billions of dollars each year. Learn about the devastating effects of this growing problem and various ways of preventing, detecting, and redressing it.

Friday, October 5 - Concurrent Breakout Session V, Track 2 - 11:20-12:15
"Elder Financial Exploitation" •  View Presentation (ppt)
Delve further into the subject of elder financial abuse. This session will focus on the many manifestations and impact of exploitation; the connection between financial capacity and exploitation; and responses of the financial services industry, social services system, and justice system.

 

Conference Speakers

Anne AlexanderAnne Alexander
Economist, Director of International Programs
University of Wyoming

Anne Alexander is an economist and Director of International Programs at the University of Wyoming. She earned her Ph.D. in Economics at UW and M.A. in Regulatory and Energy Economics at New Mexico State University. Dr. Alexander’s research and teaching focuses on international economics, health economics, energy economics, and political economy. At UW, she is in charge of efforts to enhance global perspectives at the university, including study abroad, faculty immigration, and relations with foreign universities and governments. She served on the Wyoming Legislature’s Nuclear Energy Task Force as Governor Matt Mead’s representative. From 2002-2003 she served on the Economic Policy Staff in the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of African Affairs, focusing on energy, natural resource development, and anticorruption efforts, and served as State Department liaison on sub-Saharan Africa to the Treasury Department, World Bank, and IMF. She was elected in 2006 to the Albany County Hospital District Board of Trustees (aka Ivinson Memorial Hospital), and served as Chair of the Board from 2007-2009 and Secretary until the end of her term in 2010. She is on faculty in the Department of Economics and Finance at UW, has served as the Assistant Dean for the UW College of Business, and was Director of the interdisciplinary Health Economics Policy Center at UW.

Wednesday, October 3 - Discussant after screening of film, "Inside Job" - 7:00 PM

 


John CampbellJohn Campbell
Lawyering Process Professor
University of Denver

John Campbell recently joined the faculty at the University of Denver as a Lawyering Process Professor. John Campbell earned his undergraduate degree summa cum laude from Concordia University at Austin with a major in Secondary Education and minors in religion, Spanish and English. Prior to attending law school, Professor Campbell was a high school English and Spanish teacher as well as a coach. Professor Campbell moved to St. Louis to attend Saint Louis University School of Law, where he graduated ranked 7th of 269 students, was made a member of the Order of the Woolsack and earned an international law certificate.

Professor Campbell teaches Lawyering Process. His scholarship focuses on consumer issues, including arbitration and mortgage related matters and class actions. Professor Campbell is a frequent presenter, having presented at the University of Houston conference on Teaching Consumer Law, the Consumer Law Conference hosted by the National Consumer Law Center and at various local and regional organizations.

Before becoming a full-time professor, he served as the manager of the Consumer and Class Action Department at the Simon Law Firm in St. Louis, Missouri.

Thursday, October 4 - 4:00-5:00pm
"Consumer Litigation and Lending Issues: The Growing Need for Private/Public Cooperation to Enforce Existing Law"
This presentation will provide an overview of the various federal and state consumer protection laws in a typical consumer law practice. This presentation will also focus on a variety of lending issues and the current challenges to solving these via either a purely public or purely private approach. The speakers will also discuss how to develop a consumer law practice and the role of the National Association of Consumer Advocates in assisting consumer law practitioners.

 


Peter ChandlerPeter Chandler
Associate Director
Investor Education, FINRA

Peter Chandler is the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s Associate Director of Investor Education. Pete is responsible for developing investor education tools and resources, including writing many of FINRA’s Investor Alerts and other publications that have national circulation. He also works closely with other regulatory organizations, investor groups and partners to promote responsible saving and investing. Most recently he has been involved in investor protection initiatives with the National Football League and the US Track and Field Foundation. Pete joined FINRA’s predecessor organization, the National Association of Securities Dealers in 1989. He has also held positions with The NASDAQ Stock Market, where he was NASDAQ’s Director of University and Investor Programs and Director of Ecommerce for the NASDAQ website. Mr. Chandler has a BA in English and Philosophy from the University of Wisconsin, Madison and a Masters in Marketing from The Johns Hopkins University.

Friday, October 5 - Concurrent Breakout Session V, Track 3 - 11:20-12:15
"About the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority" •  View Presentation (pdf)
FINRA is the largest independent regulator for all securities firms doing business in the United States. FINRA is dedicated to investor protection and market integrity through effective and efficient regulation and complementary compliance and technology-based services. FINRA touches virtually every aspect of the securities business - from registering and educating all industry participants to examining securities firms, writing and enforcing rules and the federal securities laws, informing and educating the investing public, providing trade reporting and other industry utilities, and administering the largest dispute resolution forum for investors and registered firms. For more information, please visit www.finra.org.

 

Kyle ChristensenKyle R. Christensen
Coordinator, Make Change NoCo
(Larimer County Financial Literacy Initiative)

Kyle R. Christensen is an education and non-profit professional with thirteen years of experience in program development and implementation. He is committed to building programming that meets community needs, and has brought his roll-up-the-sleeves working style to organizations such as Peace Corps (Moldova), NYU Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, Centrul Educatia 2000+ (Romania), and the Council for Economic Education. Most recently, Kyle directed the start up of the HSBC National Center for Economic and Financial Education at the Council for Economic Education. A professional development project funded by the international bank HSBC, programs at the National Center focus on the effective teaching of economics, personal finance, and entrepreneurship across the K-12 curriculum. When developing, delivering, refining, and evaluating programs, Kyle finds ways to achieve common strategic goals by leveraging community support and producing results with limited resources. Kyle is originally from western Nebraska.

Friday, October 5 - Closing Panel & Lunch, 12:20-1:30
"From K to Gray: Financial Literacy Across the Life Cycle"
Becoming financially literate involves a life time of learning through education and experience. Panelists will discuss issues and approaches to increasing the financial capacity of youth, early- to mid-life adults, low income individuals, and older populations.

 

Cole EhmkeCole Ehmke
Business Development Extension Specialist
University of Wyoming

Cole Ehmke is an Extension Specialist with University of Wyoming Extension and is based in the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics . His work covers personal financial resource management topics as well as agricultural entrepreneurship. Recent efforts have included chairing the Wyoming JumpStart Coalition for Financial Literacy’s board of directors, teaching a course in financial management required of bankruptcy filers, working with a team of UW Extension educators to provide financial information to Wyoming citizens, developing a new series of estate planning materials, teaching the Challenge Group management training classes for new farmers, and leading the planning group for the annual Consumer Issues Conference (Consumer Financial Protection: Who’s in Charge). Additionally he works with individuals on exploring new ventures. Cole was a Fulbright Scholar to the University of Sydney, Australia, where he received his MS degree, and he received his BA from Bethany College. Prior to joining the University of Wyoming he was at Purdue University. He grew up on a grains farm in west central Kansas.

Friday, October 5 - Concurrent Breakout Session V, Track 1 - 11:20-12:15
Paying for College: Tips and Tools to Navigate Paying the College Bills •  View Presentation (pdf)
The sticker shock of paying for college is getting bigger, and students and their families are increasingly asking themselves how they are going to pay for college. This session will look at tips, tools and strategies to employ in paying for college.

 

Robert Fronhapfle
Airman at the Family Readiness Center
F.E. Warren Air Force Base
Cheyenne, Wyoming

Thursday, October 4 - Concurrent Breakout Session III, Track 1 – 2:55 – 3:55 PM
The Military and Consumer Financial Protections
Military personnel often face financial stress issues either because of their service or that can affect their service. Understand the situation of today’s service men and women, including preparation for deployment, and the services and protections available to them, in this session by two people who work directly with the military.

 

Shelley GlauseShelley Glause
Education & Outreach Manager
BBB Foundation

Shelley Glause, education and outreach manager for the BBB Foundation, joined the BBB serving Northern Colorado and Wyoming in 2008 as a dispute resolution counselor. In her current role, she is in charge of handling all investigations brought to the attention of the Better Business Bureau. Shelley works closely with law enforcement and consumer regulatory agencies by alerting them of any potential white collar fraud occurring in the community. In addition, Shelley spearheads the local BBB Military Line program as well as other consumer and student education programs and regularly speaks to community and civic groups on topics involving scams and fraud. Shelley holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration and minors in psychology and communications from Nebraska Wesleyan University.

Friday, October 5 - Concurrent Breakout Session IV, Track 3 - 9:45-10:45
"What Consumers Should Consider in Looking for a Financial Advisor"
In today's often unpredictable financial market, investors need to know they have a financial adviser they can trust. Investment scams targeting savvy investors are becoming increasingly sophisticated by using real-life situations and fake websites of legitimate businesses. At this presentation, the BBB serving Northern Colorado and Wyoming will share information and resources on what to check for when looking for a trustworthy financial adviser, such as how to verify their credentials and licensing information. The BBB will also discuss the most common investment scams and how consumers can recognize and avoid them.

 

Rob GodbyRob Godby
Associate Professor, Economics & Finance Department
University of Wyoming

Rob Godby was born to a poor destitute family living in the wilds of Northern Ontario. Discriminated against since he can remember, he became a very bitter man. Determined to see society suffer his wrath, he has since been thinking of ways to seek his revenge. Several plans have failed (stupid matches were supposed to be waterproof) but he persists in his efforts. Most recently he has decided that being a professor in economics is the optimal way to warp young minds and similarly hatch the plan that will allow him to take over the world.

Rob is currently an Associate Professor in the Economics and Finance Department at the University of Wyoming. He was hired in 1997 after previously teaching at Laurentian University in Sudbury Ontario. Rob completed his formal education in Canada a received a Bachelor of Science Degree (Honours) in 1990 from Trent University in Peterborough Ontario, his Master of Arts degree in 1992 from the University of Guelph (pronounced "Gwelf" and John Kenneth Galbraith’s alma mater) in Guelph, Ontario, and his Doctorate from McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario in 1997. He served as his the Chair of his department from 2005 until 2010 when he returned to research. His research expertise is in the areas of natural resource, energy and environmental economics and policy, industrial organization and macroeconomic policy where he has published several articles and scholarly publications. He has also served the State of Wyoming by providing research in the areas of education finance and the Wyoming labor market. His reports and comments have appeared in the local and national press. Rob also has served on several charitable organizations and boards. He is married to Anne Alexander, also an economist and faculty member at the University of Wyoming. They have three dogs and currently reside in Laramie. Rob’s passions outside of work include sports-car and bicycle racing, both of which he has participated in rather unsuccessfully.

Wednesday, October 3 - Discussant after screening of film, "Inside Job" - 7:00 PM

 

Cathy GonzalesCathy Gonzales
AARP Wyoming State President<

Cathy Gonzales, of Cheyenne currently serves as the AARP Wyoming State President. Cathy served on the all-volunteer AARP Wyoming Government Relations Team at the State Capitol for six years, successfully lobbying for improved consumer protections, grandparent rights and aging services programs. She then served two years on the AARP Wyoming Executive Council. Gonzales is a retired high school English teacher and district negotiator. She still works part time for the Wyoming Association of Government Affairs Network (Wyoming Retailers Assoc., Wyoming Lodging and Restaurant Association and AHIP). She also serves on the Governor's Food Safety Council.

Friday, October 5 - Closing Panel & Lunch, 12:20-1:30
"From K to Gray: Financial Literacy Across the Life Cycle"
Becoming financially literate involves a life time of learning through education and experience. Panelists will discuss issues and approaches to increasing the financial capacity of youth, early- to mid-life adults, low income individuals, and older populations.

 

Clyde W. HutchinsClyde W. Hutchins
Senior Assistant Attorney General
Wyoming Attorney General's Office

Clyde Hutchins was born and raised in Georgia. He served in the U.S. Army overseas in Bindlach, Germany and later at Fort Bliss Texas. After his time in the Army, Mr. Hutchins attended Troy State University in Montgomery, Alabama, where he obtained a degree in Psychology. Mr. Hutchins then relocated to Cheyenne, Wyoming for employment. He eventually attended the University Of Wyoming College Of Law, graduating in May, 2001. Mr. Hutchins began his legal career as a law clerk in the First Judicial District Court in Cheyenne, Wyoming working principally with Judge Grant and Judge Kalokathis. He then spent several years with the law firm of Speight, McCue & Associates, P.C., in Cheyenne, Wyoming where he gained substantial experience with civil litigation.

Following one of his enduring goals, in 2007 Mr. Hutchins left Wyoming for Alaska. He worked at the Anchorage law firm of Wohlforth, Brecht, Cartledge & Brooking, P.C., where he gained experience with municipal bond law, securities law, and transactional matters. He also handled civil litigation during this time.

Mr. Hutchins returned to Wyoming in 2011 to take a position with the Wyoming Attorney General’s office. He currently works in the consumer protection and antitrust unit of the Human Services Division. He also acts as the State’s tobacco settlement unit attorney.

Thursday, October 4 - Concurrent Breakout Session II, Track 2 - 1:25-2:25
"Mortgages and Foreclosures in Wyoming"

  • The Foreclosure Crisis: Its impact in Wyoming
    • A brief review of the national data
    • A brief review of the state data
  • The Mortgage Servicer Abuses
    • The investigations of the mortgage servicing industry
    • The egregious servicer shortcomings that came to light during the investigations
    • The effect of the servicer shortcomings on consumers
  • Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (MERS)
    • Background of MERS
    • The effect of MERS on consumers, both pro and con, and how it contributed to the foreclosure crisis
    • Wyoming court decisions regarding MERS related issues
  • The National Foreclosure Settlement Agreement
    • An overview of the Settlement Agreement
    • The imposition of stringent servicing standards on the mortgage servicing industry
    • The requirement that servicing banks provide loan modifications
    • The direct payment to the State for the benefit of consumers
 

CJ JuleffCJ Juleff
Executive Director
Colorado Jump$tart Coalition

CJ Juleff is the Executive Director of the Colorado Jump$tart Coalition. She has an extensive background in developing, delivering and analyzing personal financial literacy programs for all ages. CJ spent 10 years in the financial services industry in a variety of high level positions in operations, loans and human resources in a number of commercial banks throughout Colorado. In addition, she held the position of Senior Vice President at the Colorado Bankers Association for several years. From 1999 - 2010, CJ was the VP/Programs at Young Americans Center for Financial Education and developed and delivered a variety of educational program focused on free enterprise, global economics, personal finance and entrepreneurial thinking. CJ facilitates workshops, designs curriculum, designs web site content, and aligns educational materials to state academic standards. She has developed personal finance curriculum for the National Endowment for Financial Education, CollegeInvest, Jefferson County Workforce Center among others.

Friday, October 5 - Closing Panel & Lunch, 12:20-1:30
"From K to Gray: Financial Literacy Across the Life Cycle"
Becoming financially literate involves a life time of learning through education and experience. Panelists will discuss issues and approaches to increasing the financial capacity of youth, early- to mid-life adults, low income individuals, and older populations.

 

Laurel KubinLaurel Kubin
County Director and Family Consumer Sciences Agent
Larimer County
Colorado State University Extension
Fort Collins, CO

Laurel Kubin is the County Director and Family Consumer Sciences Agent in the Larimer County office of Colorado State University Extension in Fort Collins, CO. Her Master's Degree is in Family Economics. Laurel teaches dozens of classes each year for individuals seeking financial self sufficiency. She also offers programs on long term care financing, preparation for retirement, and Small Steps to Health and Wealth. Laurel was instrumental in starting the Larimer County Financial Literacy Initiative in 2008.

Thursday, October 4 - Concurrent Breakout Session I, Track 1 - 10:30-11:30
"Banking & Payment Issues:  Build a Better Credit Score"
Credit scores are one of the most important pieces of information about a person's financial habits. Obtaining and keeping a good credit score can save you mega-bucks over a life time. Learn how to build a credit score that will help you achieve your goals.

 

Glen Lyons
Military Financial Counselor
Cheyenne, Wyoming

Glen Lyons has been in financial services for 24 years helping families and businesses with everything from insurance, investments, and financial planning to estate planning and college planning for children. He is a CLU, (chartered life underwriter) and a ChFC (chartered financial consultant). He is a counselor on personal finance issues for military personnel and is based in Cheyenne.

Thursday, October 4 - Concurrent Breakout Session III, Track 1 – 2:55 – 3:55 PM
The Military and Consumer Financial Protections
Military personnel often face financial stress issues either because of their service or that can affect their service. Understand the situation of today’s service men and women, including preparation for deployment, and the services and protections available to them, in this session by two people who work directly with the military.

 

Robert MurphyRobert Murphy
Attorney at Law

Robert W. Murphy is in private practice in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, focusing on consumer class action litigation. He presently serves as an adjunct professor of law at the University of Florida College of Law in Gainesville Florida. He is a past chair of the Consumer Protection Law Committee of The Florida Bar and is a Board Member, Secretary and Florida State Chairperson for the National Association of Consumer Advocates. He has spoken at many seminars and conferences hosted by a variety of state and national organizations, including The Florida Bar, The Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers, the National Consumer Law Center, the National Association of Legal Aid and Public Defenders, and the United States Military Judge Advocate Corps as well as college and law schools. In October, 2007 and April, 2011, the Federal Trade Commission designated Mr. Murphy to be panel member for the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act Symposium in Washington, DC, which addressed the rising abuses in the consumer debt collection industry.

Mr. Murphy has been lead counsel in a wide variety of state-wide, regional and national consumer class actions throughout the United States . In 2003, Mr. Murphy obtained the first contested certified class under the Florida Retail Installment Sales Act as reported in Brown v. SCI Funeral Services of Florida, 212 F.R.D.602 (S.D. Fla. 2003), which was described in the South Florida Business Review as one of the most significant cases in South Florida in 2003. More recently, Mr. Murphy was lead counsel in a 2009 nationwide class action which provided over $50 million in relief to over 8,000 consumers whose vehicles had been wrongfully repossessed. To date, Attorney Murphy has obtained class benefits estimated to be in excess of $500 million with significant cy pres awards to consumer and legal aid organizations.

Mr. Murphy attended the U.S. Military Academy, and received his B.A. cum laude from Wake Forest University in 1984 and his J.D. from the University of Florida College of Law in 1987. He is admitted to practice in Florida and Georgia; the United States District Courts for the Middle District of Florida, Southern District of Florida, Northern District of Florida, Western District of Oklahoma, Northern District of Ohio, Middle District of Georgia, Northern District of Georgia; Western District of Michigan; Western District of Tennessee; United States Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit and has been admitted pro hac vice in numerous other state and federal courts.

A regular contributor to local and national news media on consumer law topics, Mr. Murphy most recently appeared on ABC News Nightline on January 19, 2007 on the topic of consumer debt collection. He has authored and contributed to many articles and papers on consumer litigation issues, including a recent treatise published by the National Consumer Law Center on debt collection.

Mr. Murphy maintains his South Florida office at 1212 SE 2nd Avenue, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Telephone (954)763-8660, E-mail rphyu@aol.com.

Thursday, October 4 - 4:00-5:00pm
"Consumer Litigation and Lending Issues: The Growing Need for Private/Public Cooperation to Enforce Existing Law"
This presentation will provide an overview of the various federal and state consumer protection laws in a typical consumer law practice. This presentation will also focus on a variety of lending issues and the current challenges to solving these via either a purely public or purely private approach. The speakers will also discuss how to develop a consumer law practice and the role of the National Association of Consumer Advocates in assisting consumer law practitioners.

 

Dee PridgenDee Pridgen
Carl M. Williams Professor of Law and Social Responsibility
UW College of Law

Dee Pridgen is the Carl M. Williams Professor of Law and Social Responsibility, at the University of Wyoming’s College of Law, where she has taught since 1982. Her subjects include Consumer Protection, Contracts, Antitrust, and Payment Systems. She received her Juris Doctorate in 1974, from New York University, and a B.A. in 1971, from Cornell University. She is a member of the Order of the Coif and Phi Beta Kappa. Pridgen has been a Fulbright Scholar/Lecturer at Tokyo University in Japan and a Visiting Professor of Law at the University of Baltimore School of Law, the University of Maryland School of Law, and the Catholic University of America, Columbus School of Law. She also served as a Staff Attorney, for the Federal Trade Commission, Bureau of Consumer Protection, Washington, D.C. from 1978-82. Pridgen's publications include two treatises aimed at practicing attorneys, CONSUMER PROTECTION AND THE LAW, and CONSUMER CREDIT AND THE LAW, coauthored with Richard Alderman, both published by Thomson/West, and updated yearly. She is also a coauthor of a law school casebook entitled CONSUMER LAW: CASES AND MATERIALS (Thomson/West 3d ed. 2007) and co-editor of a statutory supplement SELECTED CONSUMER STATUTES (Thomson/West 2011). She has written articles and reports on consumer law, and has given presentations at international consumer law meetings in Helsinki, Finland and Auckland, New Zealand. She has also presented at and been the co-chair of the Consumer Issues Conference held yearly at the University of Wyoming since 2001. She has been on the faculty for Teaching Consumer Law, a biennial conference sponsored by the Consumer Law Center at the University of Houston since 2002. Pridgen was elected to the American Law Institute in 2003.

Thursday, October 4 - Concurrent Breakout Session I, Track 2 - 10:30-11:30
"New Frontiers in Consumer Financial Protection" •  View Presentation (pdf)
New laws and a new federal agency are now in place to protect consumers. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is up and running, and it is empowered to protect consumers with regard to all manner of financial issues, including bank fees, credit cards, debt collection, credit reporting, and residential mortgage loans. New laws such as the Mortgage Reform Act and the Credit CARD Act also provide some significant substantive protections for consumers. Professor Pridgen will give an overview of the new CFPB and the new federal laws regarding consumer financial protection. She will also evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of this new legislation.

 

Gerald RomeGerald Rome
John A. Guthrie Distinguished Professor of Banking and Financial Services
University of Wyoming

Mr. Gerald Rome is Deputy Securities Commissioner for the Colorado Division of Securities, a position he has held since 2004. As Deputy Commissioner, he directs the Division's enforcement, licensing and examination activities. Before assuming his current position, he served for five years as the Division's chief legal counsel in all its civil enforcement matters.

In addition to his work as a securities regulator, from 1990 to 1995, Mr. Rome served as Senior Attorney for the Resolution Trust Corporation/FDIC. While with the RTC, he directed the Civil Fraud Task Force for the Denver office where he also managed the case against those liable for the failure of Western Federal Savings in Phoenix. In addition, Mr. Rome has worked for 6 years as a criminal prosecutor, including two years prosecuting securities law violations investigated by the Colorado Division of Securities. He currently teaches a course in real estate securities at the University of Denver, Daniels College of Business.

Mr. Rome received his J.D. degree from the University of Denver School of Law, and his B.A. degree from the University of Colorado, Boulder.

Friday, October 5 - Concurrent Breakout Session IV, Track 2 - 9:45-10:45
"Investment Schemes and Scams; Tips on Protecting Yourself"

 

Sherrill ShafferSherrill Shaffer
John A. Guthrie Distinguished Professor of Banking and Financial Services
University of Wyoming

Sherrill Shaffer is the John A. Guthrie Distinguished Professor of Banking and Financial Services at the University of Wyoming. He is also a Research Associate of the Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis (CAMA) at the Australian National University and was a Visiting Scholar at Stanford University in Fall 2004. Before moving to Wyoming in 1997, Sherrill held official positions at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia for nearly nine years and served in the Banking Studies Department of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York from 1980 to 1988, becoming chief of that department in 1987-88. He received his B.A. in economics from Rice University and his Ph.D. in economics from Stanford University. He has won two teaching awards in 2010-2012 and his research has been published in the Journal of Finance; Journal of Financial Intermediation; Journal of Money, Credit, and Banking; Journal of Banking and Finance; Review of Economics and Statistics; Financial Analysts Journal; Journal of Financial Services Research; Journal of Regulatory Economics; and many other journals. He is an editor of the Journal of Economics and Business, a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Regulatory Economics, and is listed in Who's Who in America, Who's Who in the World, and several similar publications.

Friday, October 5 - Concurrent Breakout Session IV, Track 1 - 9:45-10:45
"The Dodd-Frank Act, Community Banks, and Communities."
With its 2300 pages, the Dodd-Frank Act promises extensive changes to the way banking and financial services are conducted. Details of these changes, which are still being worked out by the regulatory agencies, will affect not only Wall Street but also community banks and communities in general. The level of scrutiny it imposes on banks is unprecedented – akin to a financial version of TSA and airport security – yet will not be able to prevent all future crises. Professor Shaffer will offer a perspective on what these changes may mean for Wyoming consumers and community banks.

 

Hilla SkibaHilla Skiba
Assistant Professor
Department of Economics & Finance
University of Wyoming

Hilla Skiba is an assistant professor in finance at University of Wyoming. Her research and teaching interests are in the area of investments, real estate, international, and behavioral finance.

Thursday, October 4 - Concurrent Breakout Session I, Track 3 - 10:30-11:30
"Volatile Markets and Psychological Biases in Investment Decisions"
Psychological biases often inhibit investors from making good investment decisions. Especially during turbulent markets, investors forget fundamental principles of investing and emotions such as fear and greed begin to dominate. This session reviews some common fallacies in decision making in investing and how investors can overcome these fallacies and increase their wealth.

 

Fred SterbenzFrederic Sterbenz
Professor of Economics and Finance
University of Wyoming

He came to the University of Wyoming in 1981 after working for the Office of Monetary Research in the U.S. Treasury department. He has an undergraduate degree from M.I.T. and a Ph.D. from University of Pennsylvania. Currently he is teaching courses on Options and Futures. He has also taught courses in Options and Futures and Investments at Indiana University, Ohio State University, and University of Wisconsin. His research interests include asset pricing and derivative securities and he has published articles in various economics and finance journals such as the Journal of Finance, Econometrica, Journal of Business, and the Financial Review.

Thursday, October 4 - Concurrent Breakout Session III, Track 3 - 2:55-3:55
Options and Futures: Why are they risky? •  View Presentation (pdf)
Most options and Futures involve substantial leverage which increases the size of gains but also increases the size of the losses. Futures contracts involve use of margin and that increases leverage. Both Puts and Calls involve leverage, making them riskier than the stocks they are related to. This session will help you understand how leverage increases potential losses but also increases potential gains.

 

Matthew WilsonMatthew Wilson
Associate Professor
University of Wyoming College of Law

Matthew Wilson is an Associate Professor at the University of Wyoming College of Law. Professor Wilson specializes in intellectual property law, litigation, international business law, international dispute resolution, torts, and Japanese law. From 2003-2009, he served as a law professor for Temple University (Philadelphia) and concurrently served as Senior Associate Dean and General Counsel of Temple University’s 3,000 student campus in Tokyo. Before entering academia, Professor Wilson practiced law at Akerman Senterfitt, a large Florida-based law firm, and served as general counsel for a telecommunications firm. Professor Wilson’s legal practice has included commercial litigation, intellectual property matters, cyberspace law, and general corporate law.

Thursday, October 4 - Concurrent Breakout Session II, Track 1 - 1:25-2:25
"Emerging Payment and Money Management Options: Convenient but Dangerous?"
This presentation will examine emerging payment and money management options for consumers and businesses. Within the next three years, mobile spending is projected to reach nearly $700 billion and over 50% of all phones will function as payment processing equipment. Even today, consumers make payments and manage money through their Internet browsers, iPads, mobile phones, and other unique devices. This session will explore the various products and services currently available to consumers. It will also highlight dangerous involved with mobile payments and money management, and discuss the consumer protection schemes potentially applicable to various products and services.