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Jon Corzine

“We have to take risks,” says Jon Corzine. His statement refers to the strategy of MF Global, the futures broker that he now leads, said Justin Baer in the Financial Times. But it’s also “a fitting précis of Corzine’s remarkable career on Wall Street and in public life.” The 63-year-old Corzine has worn several hats: a “canny bond trader” who championed Goldman Sachs’ transformation from a private partnership to a public corporation; a politician who served as a U.S. senator from New Jersey and as the state’s governor; and finally the CEO of MF Global, which “he intends to build into a full-service investment bank.”

It hasn’t been an easy ride. He was ousted from Goldman in 1999 by colleagues including future Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson. Politics “took their toll” on his personal life—he divorced his “childhood sweetheart” while a senator. And he nearly died in a high-speed car wreck. But those setbacks seem only to have strengthened his determination to transform MF Global from an obscure, money-losing futures broker into a top-flight firm handling everything from mergers and acquisitions to money management. “I have been constitutionally trained,” he says, “to deal with adversity.”

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