Our Team

Robert Neighoff
Managing Partner
Mr. Neighoff is a Portfolio Manager, Chief Compliance Officer and member of the firm’s investment committee. Mr. Neighoff has over 19 years of experience investing in commercial mortgage backed securities (CMBS), REITs, agency commercial mortgage backed securities, and direct investments in commercial real estate. Mr. Neighoff joined Cicero Capital Partners in March 2011. Prior to Cicero, Mr. Neighoff was a Senior Portfolio Manager at VERO Capital Management where he was responsible for both non-agency CMBS investments and agency mortgage trading for a distressed fixed income fund. Prior to VERO Capital Management, Mr. Neighoff was a Principal in the Real Estate Finance Group at American Capital, Ltd., where he invested over $1.1 billion in credit CMBS and originated high yield commercial investments in mezzanine debt, B-notes, and equity partnerships. Prior to American Capital, Mr. Neighoff was a CMBS trader for the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) Greenwich Capital. While there, Mr. Neighoff was a trader of CMBS, Fannie Mae DUS, GNMA Multifamily securities and CMBX. Mr. Neighoff also assisted in the syndication of over $10 billion in new issue fixed and floating rate collateral.

Mr. Neighoff graduated from the University of Maryland with a BA in English and a minor in Finance and Accounting.

EVAN KURTZ
Partner
Mr. Kurtz is a Portfolio Manager and member of the firm’s investment committee. Mr. Kurtz has over 18 years of experience investing in commercial mortgage backed securities (CMBS), direct investments in commercial real estate properties and notes. Mr. Kurtz joined Cicero Capital Partners in November 2015. Prior to Cicero, Mr. Kurtz was a Principal in the Real Estate Finance Group at American Capital, Ltd., where he directed secondary CMBS investments, asset managed a portfolio of 19 CMBS control deals for which ACAS was CCR, and directed special servicing strategy on over 500 defaulted commercial real estate assets across the portfolio. Prior to American Capital, Mr. Kurtz was an Associate Director in KPMG’s structured finance group. At KPMG, he managed all aspects of an engagement covering a bulge-bracket investment bank’s CMBS issuance program, modeled bond cash flows and conducted due diligence on the underlying collateral for over 25 CMBS deals.

Mr. Kurtz graduated from Williams College with a BA in Economics.

Joel Houck
Portfolio Manager
Mr. Houck is a Portfolio Manager and oversees the firm’s investments in volatility-related options, futures and exchange traded products. Mr. Houck has over 28 years of experience as a research analyst covering primarily financial services companies and as a hedge fund manager overseeing long/short equity and volatility-related strategies. Mr. Houck was an original co-founder of Cicero Capital in 2010 and re-joined Cicero in January 2018. Prior to Cicero, Mr. Houck was a Managing Director/Senior Analyst for Wells Fargo Securities, LLC, where he led a team responsible for equity research on Specialty Finance companies and held similar roles and sector focuses at Wachovia and A.G. Edwards. Prior to Wells Fargo, Mr. Houck was the Portfolio Manager/trader of the American Capital Total Return Fund, a long/short equity fund focused on financial services companies.

Mr. Houck graduated from Miami University (Oxford, OH) with an MBA in Finance and a BS in Mathematics and Statistics. He also attended the University of Michigan and is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA).

Matt Pauley
Analyst
Mr. Pauley is an analyst and focuses on the firm’s CMBS and real estate investments. Prior to joining Cicero, Mr. Pauley was an equity research associate at Janney Montgomery Scott, where he covered Business Development Companies.

Mr. Pauley graduated from the University of North Carolina Wilmington with a BS in Finance and earned his Master in Finance degree from the University of Maryland. Mr. Pauley is a CFA level II candidate.