Alan Hartley Pic
Alan Hartley
UNF Degree: BBA '05
Employment: Owner, Black Cypress Capital Management

Osprey Financial Group leads Hartley to success

 Alan Hartley never intended to become an investment professional when he enrolled at UNF. But after becoming a member of the Osprey Financial Group (OFG) in the Coggin College of Business, he discovered his true passion.


Money management fascinated Hartley, who originally intended to enter computer science. After an investment class, however, he was encouraged to become a member of the Osprey Financial Group. That decision changed his life and started him down a road which eventually led to a position at one of the nation's preeminent equity analysis firms and ultimately to launching his own investment firm.


OFG is a student-managed investment fund. The program enables a select group of undergraduate finance and MBA students to manage a real portfolio as a professional investment firm. The group aims to outperform designated benchmarks with funding provided through the UNF Foundation.


"First and foremost it (OFG) provided me with the needed foundation to be successful in investment management." Hartley credits Dr. Reinhold Lamb, OFG faculty adviser, with encouraging him to join the group and with helping arrange his internship as a research associate for the hedge fund Ergates Capital.


After working for Ergates, Hartley became an equity analyst at Morningstar Inc. in Chicago. The quality of his UNF education was reflected in Hartley being one of only five undergraduates out of 100 stock analysts in Morningstar's equity analyst department. All of the other analysts had MBAs from some of the nation's top business schools. Hartley covered stocks from 13 different industries/sectors and wrote Stock Strategist articles for and other syndicated publications. He later became an IPO (Initial Public Offering) analyst looking into the viability of new pubic companies without much of a financial track record to evaluate. That evaluation was aided with Hartley passing all three levels of the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) program.


Hartley next had an opportunity to become a portfolio manager for an investment firm in Jacksonville. Leading a team of eight people, Hartley was responsible for analyzing the company's existing business model, identifying and implementing a more suitable one, opening a new company and redesigning and deploying a new investment strategy for the firm's $50 million portfolio. "It's been an interesting way for me to get managerial, entrepreneurial and investment management experience."


Hartley next opened his own investment firm, Black Cypress Capital Management. "Black Cypress encompasses everything I've learned since I first joined the UNF family." The endeavor has been time-consuming, but when he gets free time, he enjoys surfing, traveling, playing golf and spending time with friends and family. His newest hobbies include camping and whitewater rafting.


He has also found time to remain active at UNF being an at-large member of the Coggin College of Business Alumni Chapter. "Because UNF was a huge part of my success, I want to do anything I can to help the University."


Looking back on his UNF experience, Hartley attributes much of his success to one professor and one program. "He (Lamb) is a great teacher and a great friend. He gave me a chance when I was a very new finance major. He coached me and told me I could do it. He helped cement the belief that I could do anything if I just put my mind to it."