For fifth year in a row, Thrivent named a 'World's Most Ethical Company'
March 7, 2016
Thrivent Financial announced today that it has been recognized again by the Ethisphere Institute, the global leader in defining and advancing the standards of ethical business practices, as a 2016 World's Most Ethical Company®.
Thrivent Financial experiences year of growth; innovation
March 2, 2016
Thrivent Financial, the nation’s largest fraternal benefit society, announced today that it experienced another record year of results in 2015. Assets under management/advisement, total revenue, total surplus, and life insurance in force all rose based on a year of strong performance. Together with its members, the not-for-profit membership organization provided more than 9.3 million volunteer hours and $203.9 million in direct support to charitable organizations, schools, congregations and communities across the country.
Thrivent names Tanweer Akram as Director of Global Policy & Economics
February 24, 2016
Thrivent Financial, the largest fraternal benefit society in the country, announced that it has hired Tanweer Akram, Ph.D., as director of Global Public Policy and Economics for the organization.
Thrivent Financial announces $312 million in dividends for 2016
December 14, 2015
Eligible members of Thrivent Financial will receive an estimated $312 million in dividends in 2016. This figure represents a 32% increase from last year’s dividend distribution of approximately $237 million.
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Leadership biographies & interview sources
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Andrew Meister, Senior Equity Research Analyst
Large-Cap Auto & Airline
Brian Flanagan, Senior Equity Portfolio Manager
Brian Flanagan, CFA, has been with Thrivent Financial since 1994. He monitors mid-cap core equity products as a senior equity portfolio manager. Flanagan earned his bachelor's degree in finance and real estate and a master's degree in finance from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Chris Scheuer, Senior Equity Research Analyst
Large-Cap Entertainment and Electronics
Chris Scheuer, CFA, is a senior equity research analyst for Thrivent Asset Management covering the media, telecommunication services, gaming and entertainment industries. He has been at Thrivent Financial since 1998. Scheuer has his B.S. in finance from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Chris Serra, CFA, Senior Equity Research Analyst
Business and Commercial Services, Media, Transportation, and Consumer Durables
Chris Serra is a Senior Equity Analyst for Thrivent Asset Management across a variety of industries. He has been with Thrivent since 1998. Prior to joining Thrivent, he worked at William Blair and Company, and Morningstar. Serra is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) and has a B.A. in economics from Lawrence University.
Darren Bagwell, CFA, Director of Equity Research
Darren Bagwell oversees the efforts of Thrivent Investment Management's equity research team – composed of 20 industry analysts working in support of seven portfolio management teams – and has portfolio management responsibilities for the Thrivent Small Cap, Balanced, Natural Resource and Utility Funds. Bagwell joined Thrivent as an equity analyst in 2002 and was named director of equity research in 2004. Prior to joining Thrivent, he spent more than 10 years as a sell-side analyst at investment banks Robert W. Baird and Robertson Stephens covering the Industrial and Commercial Service sectors. He earned a bachelor of management systems degree from GMI Engineering & Management Institute, as well as an MBA from Columbia Business School in New York.
David Francis, Vice President, Investment Equities
David Francis is responsible for managing the equity investment division of Thrivent Asset Management, which includes portfolio management, research and trading for over $20 billion in equity assets. He is also a member of the Investment Strategy Committee responsible for the $12 billion Thrivent family of asset allocation funds. He has been with Thrivent Asset Management since 2001. He has more than 30 years of investment and management experience, over the years serving as fixed income and equity analyst, equity portfolio manager and in senior leadership positions in national asset management companies. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst and earned his B.A. and MBA at the University of Pittsburgh.
David Heupel, Senior Equity Research Analyst
David Heupel is a senior equity research analyst for Thrivent Asset Management covering the health care sector. He has been in the equity department for Thrivent for more than 10 years and was previously at RedSky Partners and Dain Rauscher. Heupel is a Chartered Financial Analyst and has his B.S. in economics from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas.
David Rudow, CPA, Senior Equity Research Analyst
David Rudow is a senior equity research analyst for Thrivent Asset Management covering the technology industry. He has been at Thrivent Financial since 2007 and was previously at Diamondback Capital Management, LLC, Piper Jaffray and JPMorgan. Rudow is a Certified Public Accountant and has his B.S. in business administration with an emphasis in accounting from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and an MBA in finance and accounting from the University of Chicago-Booth School of Business.
Janet I. Grangaard, CFA, Municipal Bond Fund Manager
Janet Grangaard, Chartered Financial Analyst, is portfolio manager of the Thrivent Municipal Bond Fund. She joined Thrivent Financial in 1984 as an internal auditor, and subsequently served as a securities analyst and senior securities analyst. She was named associate portfolio manager of the LB Municipal Bond Fund in 1993 and became portfolio manager in 1994. Grangaard holds a bachelor's degree in economics from Stanford University. She received a master's degree in management from the J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University.
Keri Spanbauer, CFA, Senior Equity Research Analyst
Keri Spanbauer is a senior equity research analyst for Thrivent Asset Management, covering small- and mid-cap retailers. She has been with Thrivent Financial since 1990 and has a BBA in finance from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire as well as an MBA with a concentration in finance from the University of Minnesota.
Mark Morgan, CFA, Senior Equity Research Analyst
Large-Cap Banking and Finance
Mark Morgan, CFA, joined Thrivent in 2008 and is a senior equity research analyst for Thrivent Asset Management. He covers large-cap banks, brokers and asset managers, and has covered the financial sector for more than 20 years. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Minnesota and a master's in business from New York University.
Mark Simenstad, Vice President – Head of Fixed Income Funds and Separate Accounts
Mark Simenstad, CFA, serves as Thrivent Financials vice president and head of fixed income funds and separate accounts. Simenstad also serves as a co-manager of the organization’s four asset allocation funds and the Thrivent Diversified Income Plus Fund. He joined the organization in 1983 as a securities analyst. He held a variety of positions, including head of fixed income research and portfolio manager, before leaving the organization in 1993. He rejoined the organization in 1999 and assumed his new position in October of 2002. Before rejoining Thrivent Financial, Simenstad was employed by Investment Advisers Inc. as vice president and portfolio manager from 1993 to 1996. He subsequently joined Voyageur Asset Management as chief investment officer – fixed income from 1996 to 1999. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst and received a bachelor's degree in economics from St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota, in 1981. He earned an MBA from the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis in 1983.
Nabil Elsheshai, CFA, Senior Equity Research Analyst
Software, Services and Internet Companies
Nabil Elsheshai, CFA, is a senior equity research analyst for Thrivent Asset Management covering software, services and Internet companies. He has been at Thrivent Financial since 2012 and was previously at Pacific Crest Securities covering software. Prior to his career in finance he worked in the software industry at Oracle and Informatica along with several startups. Elsheshai has his B.S. in engineering from Vanderbilt and a master's in industrial engineering from Georgia Tech.
Peter Karazeris, Senior Equity Research Analyst
Peter Karazeris is a senior equity research analyst for Thrivent Asset Management covering the technology industry. He has been at Thrivent Financial since 2010 and was previously at Citi, Susquehanna Financial Group, Robertson Stephens and Dell. Karazeris has his B.A. from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, and an MBA from New York University-Stern School of Business.
Thane Bublitz, CFA, Senior Equity Research Analyst
Small- and Mid-Cap Banking and Finance
Thane Bublitz is a senior equity research analyst for Thrivent Financial. He covers small- and mid-cap companies in the financial sector, including regional banks, thrifts and mortgage finance, specialty finance, consumer finance, asset management and custody banks, investment banking and brokerage, insurance brokers, multiline insurance, property and casualty insurance and reinsurance.
Travis Sell, Senior Equity Research Analyst
Small-Cap Household Retail
Travis Sell joined Thrivent Financial in 2007 and covers gaming, lodging and restaurants, and consumer staples. Prior to joining Thrivent Financial, Sell was a research associate for Softlines and a senior equity research analyst for FAF Advisors. Sell has a B.S. from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, and an MBA in finance from the University of Minnesota's Carlson School of Management.
- Andrew Meister, Senior Equity Research Analyst
Insurance & Annuities
For the past three years, Mark Anema has served as vice president, Accumulation and Retirement Income Solutions, at Thrivent Financial. In this role, he leads product development and product marketing for all annuity products, mutual funds and some investment advisory services. He is one of several key players who lead the ongoing management of Thrivent Financial's in force deferred and immediate annuities, and is an officer of Thrivent Financial's mutual fund complex. In addition to recently developing and launching several mutual funds and a discretionary investment advisory program, the Accumulation and Retirement Income Solutions department led the development and launch of a long-term care insurance rider for Thrivent Financial's fixed deferred annuities in 2010.
Before moving into his current marketing and development role, he served for two years as head of strategic planning at Thrivent Financial. He joined Thrivent Financial at the end of 2004 after working as a consultant at McKinsey and Company and IDS Life Insurance Company (now Ameriprise).
Retirement & Estate Strategies
Richard H. Edinger, J.D., CPA (Inactive), CLU, ChFC, Director, Advanced Markets and Retirement Consulting
Rick Edinger is the director of Advanced Markets and Retirement Consulting within Field Development and Consulting (FDC). Rick is responsible for the supervision of advanced sales, retirement planning and financial software consultants at Thrivent Financial.
Rick has also worked as a tax consultant for Resource Financial Management in Minneapolis. From 1986 until 1989, he served as a manager in the tax department of the accounting firm of Coopers & Lybrand in Minneapolis. In 1989, he joined the Advanced Marketing Department of Lutheran Brotherhood (a predecessor organization to Thrivent) as a business insurance/tax specialist.
Rick attended the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire where he graduated in 1979 with a bachelor of business administration degree, majoring in accounting. He went on to William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul, Minnesota, where he was awarded his juris doctorate degree in 1984. Rick holds the professional designations of Certified Public Accountant (CPA, Inactive), Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU) and Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC).
Teresa J. Rasmussen, Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary
Teresa J. Rasmussen is senior vice president, general counsel and secretary of Thrivent Financial, the country's largest fraternal benefit society. In this role, Terry leads more than 200 professionals in the Corporate Risk Management and External Affairs departments, which include Legal and Compliance, Corporate Governance, Business Risk Management, Government Affairs, Lutheran Church and Community Relations, and Communications.
Before joining Thrivent Financial in 2005, Terry served in progressively responsible legal positions with American Express and Ameriprise Financial. She began her legal career in 1984 as part of the United States Attorney General's honors program where she was a trial attorney in the tax division of the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, D.C.
She received her bachelor's degree in accounting from Minnesota State University-Moorhead. After passing the CPA exam, Terry earned her juris doctorate degree from the University of North Dakota. She is a member of the bar in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Colorado.
Terry is the past chair of the board of directors of the American Fraternal Alliance, the trade association for fraternal benefit societies. She also serves on the boards of Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota, MacPhail Center for Music, Association of Life Insurance Counsel, and the Lutheran Community Foundation.
Randy L. Boushek, Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer
Randy Boushek oversees all of Thrivent Financial corporate financial services, including the accounting, tax and actuarial functions. Randy joined Lutheran Brotherhood in 1981 as an associate actuary. After holding a variety of positions in the organization, he was named senior vice president and chief investment officer in 1999. He became senior vice president and treasurer in 2002 and was appointed to his current position in 2004.
Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Randy earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in mathematics with Summa Cum Laude honors from Concordia College, Moorhead, Minnesota. He is a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries and a member of the American Academy of Actuaries. In 2010, Randy was named "CFO of the Year" by The Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.
In addition to his responsibilities with Thrivent Financial, Randy serves as a board member of the Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce, a member of the Board of Regents of Concordia College, Moorhead, Minnesota, and a member of the Board of Directors of Concordia Plan Services in St. Louis, Missouri. He also has served on the board of the Minneapolis Downtown Council.
- Teresa J. Rasmussen, Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary
Thrivent Federal Credit Union
Todd H. Sipe, President and CEO
Todd Sipe served as president and CEO of Thrivent Financial Bank from 2006 to 2012. In this role, he oversaw Thrivent Financial Bank, a wholly owned subsidiary of Thrivent Financial. Currently he serves as the president and CEO of Thrivent Federal Credit Union.
In this role, he oversees the credit union and has overall leadership and profit and loss responsibility for all credit union functions. He is responsible for setting policies, developing organizational strategies and ensuring their successful execution.
Todd grew up in Crookston, Minnesota. He graduated from Moorhead State University (Minnesota) in 1983 with a degree in finance. Prior to joining Thrivent Financial Bank, Todd was vice president of member services for U.S. Federal Credit Union of Burnsville, Minnesota. He also worked for 19 years at Bremer Bank of St. Paul, where he last held the position of executive vice president, regional retail sales manager.
Todd has served as director on the boards of Thrivent Financial Bank, the Northstar Problem Gambling Alliance and the Minnesota Home Ownership Center, and is currently president of his church council.
Todd and his wife, Barb, reside in Eagan, Minnesota. They are the parents of four children, two in college. They are members of Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Church in Apple Valley, Minnesota.
Facts, Figures & Recognitions
Facts & Figures
* As of Dec. 31, 2014, except for the Fortune 500 listing which is as of June 2014.
See the ways others view Thrivent Financial through the awards and recognition we've received.
Ethisphere – World's Most Ethical Companies (2015, 2014, 2013, 2012)
Thrivent was named to the list because of our commitment to ethical leadership, compliance practices, governance and corporate citizenship.
The Ethisphere Institute is an independent center of research promoting best practices in corporate ethics and governance.
Excellence in Financial Literacy Education (EIFLE) Award (2015, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008)
This award, received for Thrivent's adult education programming, acknowledges "innovation and quality of financial literacy education efforts and the commitment of those that offer them," according to the Institute for Financial Literacy.
Ward's 50® Top Performing Insurance Companies (2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005)
This designation recognizes Thrivent for achieving outstanding financial results in the areas of safety, consistency and performance over a five-year period.
Star Tribune Top Workplaces (Minneapolis-St. Paul) (2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010)
This program recognizes 100 regional companies. The survey of employees measured: pay and benefits, working conditions, career growth opportunities, satisfaction with management, organizational execution and overall direction.
Minnesota Women's Press Favorite Financial Planner – Honorable Mention (2013)
In 2013, Thrivent was voted an honorable mention for Favorite Financial Planner in an annual Minnesota Women's Press survey. The magazine has been connecting Twin Cities businesses and organizations with the women's market for 28 years.
Wellness Council of America (WELCOA) and Wellness Council of Wisconsin Gold Well Workplace Award (2013)
This award recognizes organizations for commitment to the health and well-being of employees. The Well Workplace Awards initiative is driven by criteria outlined in WELCOA's seven benchmarks to a result-oriented Well Workplace.
Minneapolis Regional Chamber of Commerce Best in Business Award (2011)
This award recognizes six companies that have excelled, grown and supported the Minneapolis community in unique and meaningful ways.
The Salvation Army Business Partnership of the Year and Others Awards (2011, 2009)
Thrivent and The Salvation Army of the Fox Cities received this award for the Red Kettle campaign. Dozens of Thrivent volunteers staffed kettles to raise money at Christmas. The award recognizes those who demonstrate giving and compassion, while inspiring others to do the same.
Communitas Award – Green Initiatives (2010)
This award recognizes exceptional organizations and individuals that share their resources and change their business model to benefit communities. It's part of the Association of Marketing and Communication Professionals' pro bono recognition program.
Alexander Hamilton Award (Silver) for "Best Green Strategy" (Treasury & Risk) (2009)
Thrivent was one of three organizations nationwide to be honored by Treasury & Risk for excellence in finance and treasury management related to environmental awareness, conservation and social responsibility.
PINK Top 15 Companies for Women (2009)
PINK looks for a large number of women in positions of power among top earners, and examines management's commitment to a more progressive means for women to advance. PINK also looks at life-work balance programs that give women equal opportunity for a rewarding life away from the office.
New North B2B Best Places to Work Award (Wisconsin) (2009)
Thrivent was one of two employers honored with this award. Companies were selected based on: quality of the work environment, employee satisfaction and the company's commitment to developing its employees' personal and professional lives.