Team

Leadership Team

John O’Connor
Chairman & CEO Whitney Strategic Services
Mr. O’Connor has served as Chairman of J.H. Whitney Investment Management, LLC since January 2005. From January 2009 through March 2011, he served as CEO of Tactronics Holdings, LLC, a Whitney Capital Partners portfolio holding company that provided tactical integrated electronic systems to US and foreign military customers as well as composite armor solutions for military vehicles through its Armostruxx division. Previously, Mr. O’Connor was Chairman of JP Morgan Alternative Asset Management, Inc. and an Executive Partner of JP Morgan Partners. He was also a member of the Risk Management Committee of JP Morgan Chase, which was responsible for policy formulation and oversight of all market and credit risk taking activities globally. Mr. O’Connor has extensive experience in transaction leadership, structuring and portfolio management, and is a member of J.H. Whitney’s Investment Committee, contributing significant global renewable and energy investment, regulatory, and operational expertise to the Investment Manager’s team. Mr. O’Connor earned a B.A. in economics from Tulane University and a M.B.A. from Columbia University Graduate School of Business.
Thomas Bayer
Vice Chairman and Chief Technology Officer
Thomas Bayer joined Whitney Strategic Services after a notable career in business and government where he led teams to deliver data analytics, and technology solutions. As the Chief Technology Officer for S&P Global, he served as a corporate officer and member of the Executive Committee. He also managed the information technology team to support the ratings group and enable employees to perform the ratings process in a globally consistent way. Before joining S&P, Thomas served as Chief Information Officer for the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), where he directed 1900 staff and contractors and managed a $375 million technology budget. Under his leadership, the SEC enhanced information security, leveraged cloud-based technologies, standardized its enterprise platforms and significantly reduced costs - all while improving free public access to more than 21 million corporate filings and documents. Before that, he was Chief Operations Officer and Chief Technology Officer at Brand Informatics and Chief Information Officer for CapitalOne’s European IT infrastructure. Earlier, he led the design, software development, deployment and operation of e-commerce consumer and corporate lending applications at Citibank. He began his career at Sprint working on strategic product development. Thomas graduated from The Ohio State University with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting, Finance and Economics and later obtained a master’s degree from OSU’s Fischer College of Business. He is an Executive-on-Grounds at the University of Virginia’s McIntire School of Commerce, working closely with students and faculty members in the M.S. in Management of IT program.
David Puth
Board Member and Ratings Committee Member
David joined CLS as CEO in August 2012 and is a member of the Board of CLS Group Holdings. David’s career spans more than three decades in financial markets, including 19 years at J.P. Morgan where he served in a variety of senior global leadership roles with oversight of the bank’s FX, interest rate derivatives, commodities and emerging markets businesses. He also served as a member of J.P. Morgan’s Executive Committee. After leaving J.P. Morgan in 2007, he founded The Eriska Group, a New York‐based risk management consulting organization. From 2008 through 2011, David worked at State Street, where he was head of Global Markets, responsible for sales, trading and investment research across multiple asset classes, including FX, and for Currenex, the firm’s electronic FX brokerage business. David was also a member of the Foreign Exchange Committee of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, which he chaired from 1999 to 2002, and has served on the board of directors of both CME Group and ICAP. In addition, he is a member of the Bank of England’s Foreign Exchange Joint Standing Committee, and the Office of Financial Research’s Advisory Committee. Outside of the industry, David serves on a number of boards in support of education and the arts, including the Institute for Global Leadership at Tufts University and the Institute for Contemporary Art in Boston.
Bret Mahoney
Chief Operating Officer of Whitney Strategic Services
Bret Mahoney serves as Chief Operating Officer of Whitney Strategic Services and is responsible for development of strategic and technical analysis for client programs.

Prior to joining WSS, he worked in the corporate and investment banking division at Deutsche Bank AG with the industrials coverage team.  He completed multiple M&A transactions over $1 billion in enterprise value as both sell-side and buy-side advisory.

Before moving to the private sector, Bret served as a Lieutenant in the United States Navy. In his role as an intelligence officer, LT. Mahoney served aboard multiple naval platforms as a staff officer with Commander Amphibious Squadron 4 (COMPHIBRON 4) and as a lead analyst for the Office of Naval Intelligence Special Programs division.  He and his teams received multiple individual and unit recognitions including a Meritorious Unit Citation from the Director of National Intelligence.

Bret earned an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business with concentrations in Finance, Accounting, and Strategic Management. He also earned a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Loyola University New Orleans.
Chris Gore
President of D4C Global, LLC
Chris Gore is president of D4C Global, LLC, a veteran-owned counterintelligence consulting firm. He is a former U.S. Air Force officer and special agent with the Air Force Office of Special Investigations (AFOSI). He has more than 20 years of experience planning, conducting, and leading national security investigations. He has initiated and led complex operations to thwart criminals, terrorists, hostile foreign intelligence and cyber threat actors targeting national security, military, and commercial resources and personnel. As a special agent with AFOSI, Gore led one of the most complex counterintelligence investigations in U.S. Air Force history: cyber espionage operations directed against the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program. He currently provides counterintelligence training, threat awareness briefings, and specialized counterintelligence services to senior leaders in the U.S. government and Fortune 500 companies.
Dan Enten
Senior Associate Whitney Strategic Services
Dan currently manages WSS research and provides coverage and insights for senior Department of Defense officials. Prior to this he worked in Securities at Goldman Sachs using quantitative strategies to price collateralized mortgage obligation pools and other high-risk loans. Dan previously served in several Army intelligence capacities ranging from targeting to long range surveillance. He graduated with a B.A. in Finance from the University of Georgia.
Roland Trope
Legal Advisor
Roland Trope is a partner at Trope and Schramm LLP, New York City, and an Adjunct Professor in the Departments of Law and of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. Mr. Trope has a national security practice in which he represents high tech companies, government contractors, and allied ministries of defense. He advises senior officials, officers, and Boards of Directors on cross-border mergers and acquisitions, reviews by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), compliance with trade regulations such as tech transfers and licensing, corporate governance and ethics, cybersecurity, defense procurements, and protection of intellectual property rights in government contracts. Mr. Trope earned a J.D. at Yale Law School, a B.A. and M.A. at Oxford University, and a B.A. at the University of Southern California.
Natalie Corella
Head of Contracts and Compliance
Natalie A. Corella is the former Chief Compliance officer for Advanced Technology International (ATI). She has over 20 years of experience in contract management, procurement and administration. As the former executive that leads the Corporate Contracts and Procurement department, she was responsible for negotiating and overseeing all ATI prime contracts, which grew to over 1.5 billion dollars during her tenure. Natalie guides all aspects of the WSS compliance and proposal process. Natalie holds a Communications degree from University of Dayton.
John O’Connor
Chairman & CEO Whitney Strategic Services
Mr. O’Connor has served as Chairman of J.H. Whitney Investment Management, LLC since January 2005. From January 2009 through March 2011, he served as CEO of Tactronics Holdings, LLC, a Whitney Capital Partners portfolio holding company that provided tactical integrated electronic systems to US and foreign military customers as well as composite armor solutions for military vehicles through its Armostruxx division. Previously, Mr. O’Connor was Chairman of JP Morgan Alternative Asset Management, Inc. and an Executive Partner of JP Morgan Partners. He was also a member of the Risk Management Committee of JP Morgan Chase, which was responsible for policy formulation and oversight of all market and credit risk taking activities globally. Mr. O’Connor has extensive experience in transaction leadership, structuring and portfolio management, and is a member of J.H. Whitney’s Investment Committee, contributing significant global renewable and energy investment, regulatory, and operational expertise to the Investment Manager’s team. Mr. O’Connor earned a B.A. in economics from Tulane University and a M.B.A. from Columbia University Graduate School of Business.
Thomas Bayer
Vice Chairman and Chief Technology Officer
Thomas Bayer joined Whitney Strategic Services after a notable career in business and government where he led teams to deliver data analytics, and technology solutions. As the Chief Technology Officer for S&P Global, he served as a corporate officer and member of the Executive Committee. He also managed the information technology team to support the ratings group and enable employees to perform the ratings process in a globally consistent way. Before joining S&P, Thomas served as Chief Information Officer for the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), where he directed 1900 staff and contractors and managed a $375 million technology budget. Under his leadership, the SEC enhanced information security, leveraged cloud-based technologies, standardized its enterprise platforms and significantly reduced costs - all while improving free public access to more than 21 million corporate filings and documents. Before that, he was Chief Operations Officer and Chief Technology Officer at Brand Informatics and Chief Information Officer for CapitalOne’s European IT infrastructure. Earlier, he led the design, software development, deployment and operation of e-commerce consumer and corporate lending applications at Citibank. He began his career at Sprint working on strategic product development. Thomas graduated from The Ohio State University with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting, Finance and Economics and later obtained a master’s degree from OSU’s Fischer College of Business. He is an Executive-on-Grounds at the University of Virginia’s McIntire School of Commerce, working closely with students and faculty members in the M.S. in Management of IT program.
David Puth
Board Member and Ratings Committee Member
David joined CLS as CEO in August 2012 and is a member of the Board of CLS Group Holdings. David’s career spans more than three decades in financial markets, including 19 years at J.P. Morgan where he served in a variety of senior global leadership roles with oversight of the bank’s FX, interest rate derivatives, commodities and emerging markets businesses. He also served as a member of J.P. Morgan’s Executive Committee. After leaving J.P. Morgan in 2007, he founded The Eriska Group, a New York‐based risk management consulting organization. From 2008 through 2011, David worked at State Street, where he was head of Global Markets, responsible for sales, trading and investment research across multiple asset classes, including FX, and for Currenex, the firm’s electronic FX brokerage business. David was also a member of the Foreign Exchange Committee of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, which he chaired from 1999 to 2002, and has served on the board of directors of both CME Group and ICAP. In addition, he is a member of the Bank of England’s Foreign Exchange Joint Standing Committee, and the Office of Financial Research’s Advisory Committee. Outside of the industry, David serves on a number of boards in support of education and the arts, including the Institute for Global Leadership at Tufts University and the Institute for Contemporary Art in Boston.
Bret Mahoney
Chief Operating Officer of Whitney Strategic Services
Bret Mahoney serves as Chief Operating Officer of Whitney Strategic Services and is responsible for development of strategic and technical analysis for client programs.

Prior to joining WSS, he worked in the corporate and investment banking division at Deutsche Bank AG with the industrials coverage team.  He completed multiple M&A transactions over $1 billion in enterprise value as both sell-side and buy-side advisory.

Before moving to the private sector, Bret served as a Lieutenant in the United States Navy. In his role as an intelligence officer, LT. Mahoney served aboard multiple naval platforms as a staff officer with Commander Amphibious Squadron 4 (COMPHIBRON 4) and as a lead analyst for the Office of Naval Intelligence Special Programs division.  He and his teams received multiple individual and unit recognitions including a Meritorious Unit Citation from the Director of National Intelligence.

Bret earned an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business with concentrations in Finance, Accounting, and Strategic Management. He also earned a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Loyola University New Orleans.
Chris Gore
President of D4C Global, LLC
Chris Gore is president of D4C Global, LLC, a veteran-owned counterintelligence consulting firm. He is a former U.S. Air Force officer and special agent with the Air Force Office of Special Investigations (AFOSI). He has more than 20 years of experience planning, conducting, and leading national security investigations. He has initiated and led complex operations to thwart criminals, terrorists, hostile foreign intelligence and cyber threat actors targeting national security, military, and commercial resources and personnel. As a special agent with AFOSI, Gore led one of the most complex counterintelligence investigations in U.S. Air Force history: cyber espionage operations directed against the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program. He currently provides counterintelligence training, threat awareness briefings, and specialized counterintelligence services to senior leaders in the U.S. government and Fortune 500 companies.
Dan Enten
Senior Associate Whitney Strategic Services
Dan currently manages WSS research and provides coverage and insights for senior Department of Defense officials. Prior to this he worked in Securities at Goldman Sachs using quantitative strategies to price collateralized mortgage obligation pools and other high-risk loans. Dan previously served in several Army intelligence capacities ranging from targeting to long range surveillance. He graduated with a B.A. in Finance from the University of Georgia.
Roland Trope
Legal Advisor
Roland Trope is a partner at Trope and Schramm LLP, New York City, and an Adjunct Professor in the Departments of Law and of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. Mr. Trope has a national security practice in which he represents high tech companies, government contractors, and allied ministries of defense. He advises senior officials, officers, and Boards of Directors on cross-border mergers and acquisitions, reviews by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), compliance with trade regulations such as tech transfers and licensing, corporate governance and ethics, cybersecurity, defense procurements, and protection of intellectual property rights in government contracts. Mr. Trope earned a J.D. at Yale Law School, a B.A. and M.A. at Oxford University, and a B.A. at the University of Southern California.
Natalie Corella
Head of Contracts and Compliance
Natalie A. Corella is the former Chief Compliance officer for Advanced Technology International (ATI). She has over 20 years of experience in contract management, procurement and administration. As the former executive that leads the Corporate Contracts and Procurement department, she was responsible for negotiating and overseeing all ATI prime contracts, which grew to over 1.5 billion dollars during her tenure. Natalie guides all aspects of the WSS compliance and proposal process. Natalie holds a Communications degree from University of Dayton.