John Conheeney is the elder statesman of the futures industry. He has been in the commodity business for over 40 years and has been a member of all major U.S. futures exchanges. He spent most of his career at Merrill Lynch, where he began as a trainee in its futures trading program and retired as chief executive officer of Merrill Lynch Futures, Inc. He served on the board of the Chicago Board of Trade for 11 years, in which position he attracted much attention with his famous “black box” speech in Chicago in 1981 that predicted the future success of electronic exchanges over open outcry. He was instrumental in the formation of the NFA in 1982 and served as its chairman from 1990 to 1994. He was chairman of the FIA from 1982 to 1984 and served on numerous FIA committees. From 1996 to 2005, he served on the board of the New York Mercantile Exchange as a public director.