2016 Honored Speakers

Kimball Chapman

Assistant Professor of Accounting

Olin Business School

Washington University in St. Louis

Kimball Chapman conducts empirical (archival) research on how accounting information and firm disclosures affect financial markets. Current projects address questions related to how analysts' demands for firm-specific information influence managers' long-term disclosure choices; how investor relations officer tenure influences investor uncertainty; and the role of attention-motivated stock trading in explaining the earnings announcement premium. Kimball is also working on early-stage projects related to how investor characteristics influence managers' disclosure choices and how social norms influence managers' disclosure choices around earnings announcements. 

Kimball joined Olin Business School in 2015 after graduating from Penn State University. Prior to his PhD, he was the senior director of Investor Relations at Cott Corporation, a private label beverage company.

Chad Ham

Visiting Assistant Professor of Accounting

Olin Business School

Washington University in St. Louis


Chad Ham joined Olin Business School as a Visiting Assistant Professor in 2015. Prior to joining Olin, he earned a PhD from the University of Maryland, a master’s degree from Villanova University, and an undergraduate degree from Bucknell University. He previously became a certified public accountant while working for KPMG and Citco Fund Services. Chad’s research interests are primarily in the area of financial accounting, including topics such as management’s financial reporting choices and analysts’ forecasting strategies.

Rachel Hayes

Kenneth A. Sorensen/KPMG Professor

Chair, School of Accounting

University of Utah


Rachel M. Hayes earned her undergraduate degree from Oberlin College and her MBA from the University of Colorado. After receiving her Ph.D. at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business, she taught at Northwestern University and the University of Chicago before moving to the University of Utah. Dr. Hayes's research interests include disclosure and the use of accounting information in compensation and other governance settings. Her research has been published in a number of scholarly journals, including the Journal of Accounting Research, the Journal of Accounting and Economics, and the Rand Journal of Economics. Dr. Hayes is currently an editor at The Accounting Review and serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Accounting Research and the Journal of Accounting and Economics. She teaches financial accounting electives at the Undergraduate and Masters levels, as well as a Ph.D.-level seminar in Information Economics.

Valeri Nikolaev

Associate Professor of Accounting

Booth School of Business

The University of Chicago

Valeri Nikolaev studies the intersection of financial reporting and corporate finance. His current research focuses on understanding the quality of accounting information and on how contracting needs shape financial reporting. His broad interests include the role of accounting in credit markets, corporate governance, transparency, and earnings management. 

Nikolaev is on editorial boards of Journal of Accounting Research and European Accounting Review and also serves as an ad hoc reviewer for the Journal of Accounting and Economics, Journal of Accounting Research, The Accounting Review, Review of Accounting Studies, Contemporary Accounting Research, Journal of Accounting and Public Policy, and European Accounting Review.

Born in Belarus, Nikolaev lived and studied in the Netherlands and Czech Republic before joining the University of Chicago. He earned his PhD in accounting cum laude in 2007 from the Center for Economic Research at Tilburg University in The Netherlands. His research was supported by grants from the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO). He earned his master's degree in economics in 2002 from the Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education at Charles University in Prague. His bachelor's degree in economics with distinction was earned in 1999 from the Minsk’s Institute of Management in Belarus. He is fluent in English and Russian

Rodrigo Verdi

Associate Professor of Accounting

Sloan School





Rodrigo Verdi is an Associate Professor of Accounting at the MIT Sloan School of Management.

Verdi has broad interest in capital markets research in accounting and finance. His past research investigates the economic consequences of financial reporting quality to investment efficiency and to the cost of capital. He also has studied the interaction between accounting information, voluntary disclosure, and market efficiency. Overall, Verdi’s research provides insights into the role of accounting information in corporate finance decisions and in capital markets behavior.

Verdi holds a PhD from the University of Pennsylvania.

Joanna Wu

Susanna and Evans Y. Lam Professor of Business Administration 

Simon Business School

University of Rochester


Professor Wu’s research spans the areas of international financial reporting, the behavior of financial analysts, management compensation, voluntary disclosure, and mutual fund performance. Her work has been published in the Journal of Accounting and Economics, Journal of Finance, Journal of Accounting Research, and The Accounting Review, among others. She has been named to the Simon School Dean’s Teaching Honor Roll numerous times. Professor Wu is an editor of the Journal of Accounting and Economics.