Born in 1947, Joseph J. Ritchie is currently the President and Founder of Fox River Financial Resources Inc. (FR2) which deals in hedge funds, venture capital funds, direct equity investments, real estate, and proprietary trading strategies. Ritchie resides in West Chicago, Illinois with his wife Sharon of 41 years and they have ten children. Ritchie has a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from Wheaton College as well as an LL.D from Hanyang University in Seoul, Korea.
Ritchie founded Chicago Research & Trading Group, Ltd. (CRT) in 1977. CRT had offices in Chicago, New York, Tokyo, Singapore, London and Frankfurt. At one point during the 1980’s, CRT was averaging 2.5 billion dollars a day in trades, which accounted for 30–40% of the volume in options market trades worldwide. CRT was sold to Nations Bank (now Bank of America) in 1993 for an estimated $225 million. In 1987 in Russia, Ritchie founded JV Dialog in partnership with the Academy of Sciences, Space Research Institute, Moscow State University, and Kamaz, which is now the oldest U.S. – Russian Joint Venture. Dialog has spun off 80 new companies in 35 cities, employing over 5,000 people. In Japan, Ritchie still has partnerships with entrepreneurs in to start and grow several service and education businesses.
Beyond his businesses internationally, Richie has had partnerships with key Afghans in a variety of involvements, from (pre 9/11) challenging the Taliban, to (post 9/11) building grassroots civilian infrastructure (particularly in Eastern Afghanistan) to help grow a cohesive political structure, institute traditional village level governance, and facilitate projects to greatly increase agricultural productivity. Ritchie has also spent the last number of years working with political and religious leaders of Rwanda and Malawi.
Ritchie’s extra-curricular activities include, Director of Mission Control for Steve Fossett’s successful circumnavigation of the globe in a balloon, as well as mission control director, chase pilot, weather analyst, and search and rescue coordinator for earlier flights. Ritchie also broke Chuck Yeager's all-time trans-continental speed record for turbo-prop aircraft.