Donald Schlesinger is the President of Demand Derivatives Corp. Prior to the merging of the individual product companies under the DDC corporate umbrella, he was instrumental in directing the companies separately.
Donald Schlesinger was the Vice Chairman and Chief Strategy Officer of The VolX Group Corporation and RealDay Options Corporation — after a period of semi-retirement. Before this he was an Executive Director in Morgan Stanley Dean Witter’s Worldwide Equity Derivatives department. As the Director of Derivatives Education and Training, some of Don’s responsibilities included the creation, supervision, and delivery of in-house programs, as well as educational seminars for clients. In 1993, Don helped establish and perfect risk-management techniques and systems for global equity derivatives traders at the firm. Schlesinger was a member of the Institutional Equity Division’s derivatives risk-management committee and served as a liaison between that unit and the firm’s head of global risk management.
Prior to assuming these roles, he was a Proprietary Trader and Options Strategist at Morgan Stanley, from 1984 to 1994, where he managed the firm’s domestic over-the-counter options book and priced structured products for clients. Schlesinger has lectured extensively on options theory and hedging techniques, having participated in many industry-sponsored events, and has written numerous published papers and articles on options strategies. Among them are: “Options Alphabet Soup,” “Looking Askew at Volatility,” “Hedging First- and Second-Order Sensitivities of Options” (“Learning Curve” article in Derivatives Week), “Volatility Cones Come in Many Flavors” (co-authored with Robert Krause, for Futures Magazine), “Hedging Imperfect Baskets” (co-authored with Robert Krause, for Derivatives Strategy magazine), and “Volatility Trading: RealVol futures Jump into the Mix” (co-authored with Robert Krause, for Swiss Derivatives Review).
In 1996, Don was part of the third-place “All-America Research Team,” named by Institutional Investor, which commented: “The group’s ‘top notch’ educational seminars, under the direction of Donald Schlesinger, demystify derivatives, according to a participant.” In 1991–92, Schlesinger was the featured speaker in over 100 presentations of Morgan Stanley’s PERCS product to institutional clients in the U.S. and Europe.
Since leaving the firm, Don has continued to lecture at Morgan Stanley, and has also done training and presentations for Goldman Sachs, Lehman Brothers, Deutsche Bank, Credit Suisse First Boston, the Options Industry Council, and Electronic Trading Group.
As a former teacher in the New York City school system, Schlesinger taught high school-level mathematics and French for 16 years. He holds Master of Philosophy and M.A. degrees in French from the City University of New York, and a B.S. in mathematics, cum laude, from The City College of New York.