Name: Suzanne Sprague
Organization: CME Group
Job Title: Senior Managing Director, Global Head of Clearing & Post-Trade Services
1. Brief description of nominee’s role/job
I serve as senior managing director and global head of clearing and post-trade services for CME Group. I am a member of the company’s management team and was appointed to this role in 2022. CME Clearing offers over 100 years of experience clearing derivatives. We help clients manage risk by offering the broadest and most efficient clearing solution, and the greatest operational flexibility, including in times of volatility and uncertainty.
2. Short bio (career highlights, education, interests/hobbies):
I have been really fortunate to build my career at CME Group since joining the company in 2002. Since that time, I have held numerous roles and leadership positions in financial management and risk management. I have played a key role in the company’s development of its risk management policy as well. In 2015, I was appointed managing director, credit & liquidity risk, risk policy & banking, overseeing CME Clearing’s exposure to counterparty credit risk, liquidity risk management and financial performance, acceptable collateral and collateral services, risk management policies and procedures, financial operations, and banking. I’ve had the opportunity to work with clients and teams all over the world, including roles in our New York and London offices, as well as our Chicago headquarters.
I earned a bachelor’s degree with concentrations in finance and international business from Indiana University and a master’s degree in financial markets from the Illinois Institute of Technology. And, last but certainly not least, I’m expecting my first child this Spring!
3. What were your professional highlights and challenges of 2022?
The highlight of last year was definitely transitioning into my new leadership role within CME Clearing at a time of heightened volatility across the market. These are the times that are certainly challenging, but they are also when our clearing and risk management capabilities are at their most important.
One thing at CME Clearing that continues to impress me is that we clear and risk manage futures and options across every major investible asset class and no other clearing house can stake that claim. We also provide the most efficient swaps clearing solution available and have cleared over $74 billion average daily notional across various IRS currencies in 2022. In addition, we offer the broadest range of acceptable collateral in the industry and continue to work with clients to expand eligibility, a personal priority of mine. CME Group accepts cash in 19 currencies and foreign sovereign debt from 10 countries reflecting the diversity of our clients’ clearing needs, while supporting efficiency and prudent risk management. For example, recent enhancements include accepting COMEX Gold Warrants and U.S. Treasury ETFs, as well increasing the limit for Letters of Credit.
I’ve always been passionate about helping the next generation succeed and one of my highlights of 2022 was reconnecting with new entrants to the industry, both through working with CME Group’s scholarship program and through guest lecturing at an MBA class on financial markets.
4. What and who inspires/has inspired you to achieve your professional success?
I’ve been inspired by many leaders at CME Group during my tenure and have been fortunate to have great role models in many fellow female leaders since day one of joining CME Group. As well as helping me develop through their mentorship, they’ve given me a positive, aspirational attitude as I’ve joined many of them on CME Group’s leadership team. They’ve always encouraged me to work hard, do my best, treat everyone with respect and value diversity in thought leadership. These are also values that my mom instilled in me from an early age.
5. What advice do you have for other women who aspire to be in leadership positions?
Be open to taking a new career path without knowing where it could lead. In my career at CME, which dates back two decades, I’ve twice taken new roles in other locations that have not necessarily been clearly defined or an obvious route forward for my career. But by being inquisitive and open to new experiences, I’ve benefited hugely by jumping into the unknown – helping me develop personally with new skills and experience, but also helping drive the organization forward in a way that I couldn’t have foreseen at the time.
The views, thoughts and opinions contained in this Focus article belong solely to the author and do not necessarily reflect the WFE’s policy position on the issue, or the WFE’s views or opinions.