About Us

With supervisory offices in Boston and Oakland, and representatives spanning the country from New York to Portland and LA, Bequia has a broad reach. Our supervising office principals have formed over fifty private investment funds, represented LPs in over one hundred investments in private funds and companies, served in General Counsel and Chief Regulatory Officer positions for the Pacific Stock Exchange, Boston Stock Exchange, and NASDAQ and were founding board members of the Sustainable Accounting Standards Board (SASB).

Our Principals

Lara Slachta
CEO
Lara is the founder of Bequia Securities. She started Bequia in 2017 to professionalize the capital-raising process in the nascent impact investing space.  In the nearly twenty years of practicing law, Lara has worked primarily with private investment funds and early stage companies that are raising private sources of capital.
She has formed over 50 private investment funds and represented limited partners in more than a hundred investments in private funds and companies.  Lara is a practical idealist who seeks to bridge thoughtful investors with investment opportunities that make a difference.  Lara earned her J.D. from Yale Law School, an M.Sc. from the London School of Economics, and a B.A. from Providence College. She holds FINRA Series 7, 24, 63, 79 and 82 licenses and serves as both the Chief Compliance Officer and Chief Executive Officer of Bequia.
John Katovich
Principal
A principal of Bequia Securities, LLC and a co-founder of the SVX US trading platform, John Katovich is also the founder and principal at Cutting Edge Counsel, and its securities practice group, Cutting Edge Capital. John is committed to economic justice and democratic capitalism, fostering responsible and sustainable capital-raising strategies and operational practices. John held General Counsel and Chief Regulatory Officer positions for the Pacific Stock Exchange, Boston Stock Exchange, and NASDAQ. John was also General Counsel for OptiMark Technologies, which revolutionized computer-based trading of institutional and large block orders, and ePit, providing enterprise-class software for emerging electronic markets worldwide. John is a founding board member of SASB (Sustainable Accounting Standards Board), and The Food Commons, a non-profit that shepherds an integrated system for community-owned and operated enterprises scaling local food accessibility. John taught Capital Markets at Presidio Graduate School’s MBA program, and options trading at the UC Berkeley, and INSEAD, France. John holds FINRA Series 62, 24 & 63 Licenses, and is law-licensed in California and Illinois. John has also been a regular contributor to the Huffington Post.
Will Hogan
Principal
Will Hogan is a builder of community and collaboration in Impact, focused on capital formation for Impact businesses, projects and funds.  Over his career, Will has often led cross-functional project teams to originate commercial and project financings and build investment products.  Recent focus Impact themes include renewable energy generation and storage, health and wellness, inequality, diversity and inclusion, sustainable agriculture+food, and real estate.  Will is also focused on ways Opportunity Zone incentives may be utilized to generate positive Impact. Will has driven new business initiatives within and across organizations at firms such as Amalgamated Bank, Aetos Capital, Morgan Stanley, and Ernst & Young. Will serves on the board of directors of Jacob Riis Neighborhood Settlement in Queens, New York.  He also serves as a guide for The Resolution Project, which fosters social entrepreneurship on college campuses globally. Will has served on the CAIA Association’s New York Chapter Committee, and as a judge and mentor in social venture business plan competitions at NYU Stern and the Mentor Capital Network. Will holds an MBA from NYU Stern, an AB from The University of Chicago, the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst designation, and the Sustainable Investment Professional Certificate from Concordia University (Montreal). Will holds Series 7 & 63 securities licenses.

Our Registered Representatives

Jamil French
Registered Representative
Jamil French is a private investments consultant who provides capital introduction and financial advisory services to private fund managers and deal sponsors. His clients include emerging and established hedge and private equity managers as well as institutional investors seeking exposure to the late stage pre-IPO "secondaries" market.  French began his career as a Wall Street corporate lawyer at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP and later at Seward & Kissel LLP, where he represented private funds, blue chip companies, investment banks and other institutions. He later served as Associate General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer at Sandell Asset Management Corp., a mid-sized, multi-strategy hedge fund manager. French has taken away from each of these positions a deep understanding of the challenges facing private fund managers and institutional investors with the ability to help his business partners find effective solutions. He received an A.B., cum laude, from Princeton University in 1997 and a J.D. from Harvard Law School in 2001.  Institutional Investor Magazine named French a 2018 Hedge Fund Rising Star. He is Chairman of the Hedge Fund Association's Strategic Investor Committee and holds Series 7 and 63 securities licenses. French is admitted to practice law in New York and before the United States Supreme Court.
Jared Gonsky
Registered Representative
Jared Gonsky is a Principal at LOHAS Capital and Advisors, where he bridges the gap between investors that want to make a meaningful impact, and innovative businesses addressing today’s most pressing challenges. Jared leads business development and fundraising initiatives for ventures and funds focused on health, sustainability and social impact. He also is a thought leader in the impact investing community encouraging investors to consider impact across their portfolio including their cash accounts and Donor Advised Funds. Jared has led project financing and commercial activities for a variety of cleantech ventures in energy, waste conversion, and sustainable infrastructure. Notably, he worked at DuPont in alternative fuels, and led commercialization in emerging markets for the carbon recycling firm LanzaTech. Jared began his career in the dot-com era with CGI Capital, where he evaluated direct private investment in tech firms. He then pivoted into impact, working as a management consultant with ERM where he helped form their Energy, Climate Change and Sustainability practice, and led a wide range of CSR initiatives for Fortune 500 firms. Jared earned his MBA and BS in Cell Biology from the University of Illinois. He is a candidate for CAIA designation, and is certified in Sustainable Enterprise, Corporate Social Responsibility, and Impact Investing. He holds FINRA Series 63 and 82 securities licenses.
Eric Grunebaum
Registered Representative
Eric works with impact investors, family offices, foundations and cleantech companies and funds sourcing and placing capital. He also cofounded an industrial ecology startup focusing on high-efficiency, cloud-scale datacenters; has consulted on the expansion of Greentown Labs – the largest cleantech incubator in the US; and develops commercial-scale solar and energy efficiency projects through his company Cambridge Energy Advisors. Previously Eric developed mixed-income housing and produced social and environmental documentary films including The Last Mountain which premiered at Sundance and focused on a WVa community proposing a wind-farm on the nearby mountains rather than a coal mine which would strip the hills bare while poisoning the air and water. Eric’s pro bono work includes curating and presenting at numerous climate and clean energy events for the Cambridge Innovation Center, the Boston Area Sustainability Group and the Climate Action Business Association. Eric earned his BA from Harvard University in Visual and Environmental Studies and holds FINRA Series 82 and 63 securities licenses.
Tony Haske
Registered Representative
Tony Haske has 14 years of experience in renewable energy. His work in renewable energy is driven by his wider interest in the onset of climate change, which he views as an impetus to improving our quality of life and to entering a new stage of economic growth and technology development. While working in energy, he has gained a strong understanding of the market- and policy-drivers of clean technology development and observed how increasing renewable energy adoption is creating significant opportunities to advance technologies in the energy infrastructure i.e., the energy transformation. Tony brings six years of experience with Cutting Edge Capital, where Tony consulted with cleantech companies on community-based capital-raising strategies. He is also an advisor to the Integrated Renewable Energy Systems Network, an NGO promoting collaboration between utilities and cities for more effective integration of local clean energy.   Tony earned his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering and B.A. in Philosophy from the University of Notre Dame and his M.S. in Atmospheric Physics from the University of Arizona. He holds the FINRA Series 63 and Series 82 licenses.
Robyn Polansky Morrison
Registered Representative
Working at the intersection of money and meaning has been a career-long pursuit for Robyn Polansky Morrison, founder and lead principal of MORR Strategy LLC an independent cross-disciplinary, advisory and consultancy firm, providing bespoke financial advice combined with hands-on solutions. Areas of specialization include capital introduction, impact and values-based investing, financial literacy and strategy, and intentional philanthropy. Morrison has over 20 years of experience with high net worth individuals, families, small businesses, and foundations at iconic institutions including Align Impact, Bank of America Private Bank (formerly U.S. Trust Private Bank), Bessemer Trust and Thomson Reuters. Her depth of knowledge and expertise in the wealth management space has successfully increased the access to, effectiveness in, and alignment of deploying capital through a range of traditional, alternative, social and impact investments as well as philanthropic grants. Morrison earned her B.A. in Economics from Union College, where she was a four-year member of the varsity crew team, and her M.B.A. from Touro College Graduate School of Business.
Stephen Nunes
Registered Representative
Stephen Nunes is a Director at Next Street, a mission-driven advisory firm that is revolutionizing how its clients provide capital, customers, and services to small businesses and entrepreneurs. Stephen primarily focuses on supporting organizations that are delivering affordable and responsible capital to small businesses, including Community Development Financial Institutions, banks, and select fintech alternative lenders. Prior to joining Next Street, Stephen worked as a Director for UBS AG in the Investment Banking division where he focused on providing corporations in the natural resources sector with M&A advisory services and financing solutions. While at UBS, Stephen also collaborated with the firms’ Wealth Management division as part of its initiative to improve the availability of impact investments to UBS’ network of retail clients by helping develop a due diligence framework to verify that private fund managers meet UBS’ criteria to be considered an impact investment. Stephen graduated from Bates College with a bachelor’s degree in Economics, Physics and Mathematics.
Monica Reid
Registered Representative
Monica Reid is a Registered Representative who works with issuers to facilitate debt or equity securities offerings. Though Monica is a generalist, her expertise is in taxable and tax-exempt financing for environmentally sustainable projects, products and services. Monica's education, experience and industry knowledge add value by helping issuers connect with investors. Monica has been involved in project finance for over 19 years. She has secured hundreds of millions of dollars in grants and loans for water and energy projects and companies, and facilitated public-private partnerships. Monica holds FINRA Series 79 and Series 63 licenses, is a Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Alumnus, and Climate Bonds Initiative Approved Verifier. Monica holds a Bachelor of Science in Ecology from The Evergreen State College and did graduate work in Geological Oceanography at Moss Landing Marine Laboratories, California State University.
Matt Semonsen
Registered Representative
Matt Semonsen is a co-founder and executive of Aqaix, Inc., a software company bringing capital to the water space, and a registered representative with Bequia Securities. To have suitable conversations between water issuers and investors, it became clear that Matt needed to circle back, after 20 years, to renew his brokerage license.  Joining the Bequia Securities team was the perfect choice as their mission is to focus on sustainable resilient impact opportunities. Water is critically underfunded throughout the world. Estimates for the United States are as much as $200 Billion annually in underfunded water infrastructure needs.  With his diverse background as a past executive on Wall Street, to a successful small business Builder Owner Operator, to founding and leading a charitable non profit organization, Matt hopes to bring his experience to assist water issuers to faster, smarter and more transparent capital funding. Matt's been awarded Sacramento's Financial Executive of the year, and holds a Bachelor of Science in Managerial Economics from the College of Agriculture at the University of California, Davis.


Pauliina Swartz
Registered Representative
Pauliina Swartz raises capital for local socially responsible companies and projects. She seeks to bring more mainstream capital to impact investing. Previously, Pauliina had a long career in structured finance at State Street Corporation. Pauliina is a Cleantech Open mentor and a sponsor of TCN’s Fellowship for Female Founders. Pauliina is a non-resident Senior Fellow with the Institute for Sustainable Energy at Boston University. She serves on the board of New England Women in Energy and the Environment (NEWIEE) and on the Energy Advisory Committee for the city of Newburyport. Pauliina is a CFA® charter holder and holds Series 7 General Securities and Series 63 State Securities licenses.