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Neil Withers, CFA, President, CFA Association (Russia)

Canadian banker Neil Withers, the current president of CFA Association Russia, has been living in Russia for 20 years. Prior to coming to Russia, Neil had a successful career in his home country, working for two largest Canadian banks, the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) and the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC).

Upon graduation from McGill University, one of Canada’s top schools, Neil started a career in finance working as an economist and editor at Montreal’s Bank Credit Analyst. In 1979 Neil received his CFA charter. For the next two and a half decades, he worked for CIBC and RBC, focusing on several areas, including strategy, marketing, financial planning, control, and investor relations.

In the fall of 1997, Neil started the Russian part of his career as a head of the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) project team sponsored by the World Bank. Under Neil’s supervision CIBC built relations with Vozrozhdenie Bank, one of thirty Russian banks participating in the Financial Institutions Development Program. Following the Russian financial crisis of ’98, Neil participated in negotiations between Vozrozhdenie, foreign creditors and international financial institutions and in 2003 joined the Bank as Advisor to the Chairman of Vozrozhdenie Bank. He had particular responsibilities for investor relations and strategy and led Vozrozhdenie’s first and second international public share issues in 2006 and 2007. For 11 years working with Vozrozhdenie, Neil helped the bank to become one of the most respected mid-cap companies on the Russian and international financial markets.

Following Vozrozhdenie, Neil served as Senior VP at VTB and VP at Promsvyazbank, heading their investor relations teams in both equity and debt issuance. In recent years Neil worked as an independent consultant in investor relations and corporate governance.