Waycross Partners Portfolio Team and Operations Staff


Waycross Partners was founded in 2005 by Benjamin Thomas.  Prior to founding Waycross Partners, Ben and several key members of the investment team worked together at INVESCO, an institutional asset management firm that managed core equity portfolios. 

Waycross was founded on the simple idea that opportunities for active management were more abundant when an investor is able to take either side of an investment and is not constrained to only purchases on the long side. Additionally, long/short equity can enjoy the benefits of equity investing, while limiting potentially harmful side effects, such as high volatility and large capital drawdowns.

At Waycross Partners, we believe that successful investing is a balance between conviction and discipline:

  • Conviction is achieved through our Key Factor Approach to fundamental analysis, which keeps us focused on only the most critical drivers to a company’s earnings. 
  • A disciplined approach to risk management is embedded within our investment process as we seek to understand, monitor, and limit downside protection.

This investment philosophy represents the guiding principles that shape our investment decision making process. 

Investment Team

Operations & Client Services

Ask the Team

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Benjamin H. Thomas, CFA

Managing Partner | Portfolio Manager

Ben is Managing Partner and Portfolio Manager for the firm.  Before founding Waycross Partners in 2005, Ben was a Portfolio Manager and Senior Equity Analyst for Invesco where he was responsible for managing two mid cap strategies and led the firm’s technology and telecom research effort.  Prior to Invesco, Ben worked for Banc One Securities (now J.P. Morgan Asset Management) and Prudential Securities.  

A native to Louisville, Ben attended the University of Kentucky where he earned a bachelor’s degree in Finance.  He continued his education at Indiana University where he was awarded a master’s degree in Business Administration.  Ben is a CFA charter holder and member of the CFA Society of Louisville where he served as president from 2007 to 2008.  A former soccer player, Ben coaches a competitive youth soccer program based in Louisville. Ben and his wife Carrie have two children. 

John W. Ferreby, CFA

Partner | Portfolio Manager

John joined the firm in 2009 as a Partner and Portfolio Manager. Prior to joining Waycross Partners, John was a Principal and Senior Portfolio Manager at Invesco in Louisville, Kentucky. At Invesco, John was the lead investment professional for Invesco’s $15 billion large cap core institutional strategy and was responsible for final decisions on all mid cap and large cap equity trades.

John holds a bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College and is a CFA charter holder. He is a member of the CFA Society of Louisville.

Larry J. Walker, CFA


Larry joined the firm in 2008 as a Partner.  Larry brings over 38 years of investment experience to his role as Strategist on the portfolio management team at Waycross.  Larry worked previously as a Principal and Portfolio Manager at Invesco (formerly National Asset Management) in Louisville, Kentucky.  From 1976 to 1992 he was a Principal and Investment Consultant at Mercer Investment Consulting. Larry graduated from Purdue and went on to earn his MBA from the University of Louisville.

He is a member of the CFA Society of Louisville.  Larry is actively involved in the Louisville community serving on several boards and investment committees.  Larry and his wife Kathleen have two daughters and have been blessed with six grandchildren. 

James E. Moore III, CFA


Jim joined the firm in 2015 as an Analyst on the portfolio management team.  Prior to joining Waycross Partners, Jim was Principal and Chief Investment Officer of Olmsted Capital, LLC.  Jim attended Yale University where he earned a bachelor’s degree in History and went on to earn an MBA from Dartmouth College in 1994.  Jim has over 25 years of investment experience having worked previously at State Street Research and 1838 Investment Advisors before relocating to Louisville in 2005. 

Jim is a former board member and Treasurer of the Louisville Ballet.  Jim is currently a board member and Treasurer of Bulldogs in the Bluegrass, an internship program for Yale University students.  Jim is a CFA charter holder and member of the CFA Society of Louisville. 

Paul F. Hummer, CFA


Paul joined Waycross Partners in 2017 as an Analyst. Paul is an experienced investment professional with a career that spans 16 years in the industry. Paul worked as a Trader at RQSI where he traded futures, options, and cash currencies for a $1 billion hedge fund. After two years in that role, Paul was promoted to an Analyst position at RSQI where he focused on the Energy and Industrials sectors.

Paul worked previously as an entrepreneur. In 1996 he founded a microbrewery and operated the facility for five years before selling it. He continues to brew beer as a hobby. Paul holds a bachelor’s degree in Biology from Penn State and attended the Masters Program in Food Science at the University of California at Davis. Paul is a CFA charter holder and member of the CFA Society of Louisville.

Emily O'Leary

Director of Operations

Emily joined Waycross Partners as Operations Manager at the beginning of 2018 where she oversees much of the firm’s compliance, administration and marketing. Prior to her position at Waycross Partners, Emily worked as an Analyst for a Registered Investment Advisory firm with more than $3 billion in assets under management.

After moving to Louisville from New Jersey with her husband Matt, she worked for a large, regional law firm in their marketing and operations department. Emily graduated magna cum laude from Bentley University with a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Finance.

Shannon Burnett

Client Relationship Manager

As Client Relationship Manager for Waycross Partners, Shannon brings more than 20 years of experience in meeting the needs of clients to her role. Prior to joining Waycross in 2020, Shannon held various marketing and client relations positions at River Road Asset Management, Integrity Asset Management and Invesco.


Shannon attended the University of Louisville where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Psychology. She continued her education at Bellarmine University where she was awarded a master’s degree in Business Administration.

Douglas Myers

National Accounts Director

Doug brings more than 26 years of experience in the financial services industry to his role as National Sales Director for the firm. Prior to joining Waycross Partners, Doug spent 15 years as a Financial Advisor and has been a licensed Advisor for 23 years. His in-depth industry knowledge helps Doug partner with his clients in identifying the right investment solutions to meet their financial goals.

After earning his B.S. in Finance from Indiana University Southeast, Doug started his career as a Marketing Associate with J.C. Bradford and Company in Louisville, KY. He then worked as a Portfolio Specialist for National Asset Management, which was later acquired by INVESCO. Doug’s everlasting energy and passion can be seen through his pursuit of several other endeavors. He is an author of two books, founder of a nonprofit organization that teaches financial skills to youth and led the development a subdivision in his home town called Harvest Farms. 

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Waycross Long/Short Equity Fund (WAYEX) reaches five year milestone.