Ron Pollack Fund Manager, Family Man, Friend. Ron Pollack He’s Back, More Extraordinary Achievements To Come. Ron Pollack Mastering Hedge Funds, Charities And Family.

Ron Pollack: He is back, more adventures to come

After a chance meeting with this man, you probably would have no idea that he had organized one of the biggest and most successful hedge funds in America. At its peak, the fund was valued at more than one billion dollars. Ron Pollack sat in his Florida office dressed in Florida casual–shorts and a T-shirt. He told us about his job as a hedge fund manager and short seller. He also shared details about his family, the charities he has been involved it, and the reason for coming out of a 6-year retirement to manage funds again. Ron says that “short selling is what I do and I need to get back to doing it.”

Ron Pollack is an alumni of Yale (Magna Cum Laude) and earned a M.B.A and J.D. from Harvard. After grad school, Pollack turned to stocks where he joined the ranks of many of his classmates in investment banking and fine tuning his skill as a hedge fund manager. Ron first learned short selling from the Feshbach Brothers.

Both Yale and Harvard seem to have a penchant for turning out successful investors: Jim Chanos (widely credited with exposing Enron as a fraud, and who Ron got to know back in the 1980s when they were both short First Executive Life), Zoe Cruz (a brilliant commodity trader who rose to the co-presidency of Morgan Stanley, a sectionmate of Rons at HBS), Jamie Dinan (CEO of JP Morgan Chase, who Ron used to play pick-up basketball with at HBS), Strauss Zelnick (media wunderkind and Chairman of ZelnickMedia and Take-Two Interactive, Ron’s roommate at Harvard), Scott Schoen and Scott Sperling (co-presidents of leveraged buyout giant THL, and friends of Ron from Harvard), Steve Pagliuca and John Bekenstein (of Bain Capital, friends of Ron from HBS and Yale respectively), Glenn Hutchins (of Silverlake Partners, also a Harvard classmate), to name just a few. Pollack, both a Yale and Harvard graduate, is no exception. After leaving Feshbach in the early 1990s, Pollack built a highly successful family of hedge funds; the most well-known was his short fund, appropriately named Dancing Bear. But towards the end of 2001, Pollack started to a look how he could spend more time with his growing family and helping charities.

“After the terrorist attack on 9/11,” Pollack said, “I was moved by what had happened and I really wanted to help.” The financial markets went into turmoil, and stayed that way, in the months following the attack. Ron felt pulled between his family and his investment business. In November, Ron was on vacation with his three children and his pregnant wife, sitting in a hotel room with his laptop watching the markets. The markets were just crazy and he realized that he had to get back to the office.

On the way back, a he hatched a plan that would not only give him time to spend with his family but also to give back more to society and help with the charities he was passionate about. In 2002, Ron merged his hedge fund business with the Monitor Group in Cambridge, MA. This allowed him to have more time for activities that he loved to do outdoors, volunteer work and spending more times with his kids. He also set up fund-raisers aimed at giving aid to ailing firefighters and law enforcement. Many groups were started because of him.

In his fund-raising role, he sometimes found himself visiting fund managers. Whenever this happened, he became somewhat torn because he had quit trading and he missed being involved. In all the time he served as a volunteer, Pollack actually made only a single trade.

{{{At a charity auction in Vail, Pollack had bid for a day of trading and instruction with a local stockbroker, “just for fun.” Little did this broker know who had won the bid. Needless to say, he was shocked to find out the depth of knowledge that his visitor had. Within the first 15 minutes, Pollack had completed a successful short sale and knew that he “still had it.”|At a charity auction in Vail, Colorado, Pollack, out of humor, was found bidding on a day of trading and instruction from a local stock broker. The broker had no idea who had won the bid. Soon after, he was shocked to find out the vast knowledge and experience his visitor had. Within a short while, Pollack had once again done a successful short sale and knew he was still “the man”|For a bit of personal entertainment, Pollack treated himself to a day of ‘personal training’ and trading with a local stockbroker, which he won at a charity auction in Vail. It was a major surprise for this stockbroker when he discovered who his trainee was going to be and even more of a surprise when he realized quite how much Ron knew about the markets. It took Pollack just 15 minutes to triumph and a successful short sale trade. He then knew that he had not lost his touch.|While at a charity auction, Pollack jokingly bid on a day