I knew I wanted to be a Mathematician and that meant getting a Ph.D. I didn't plan on a career in finance, only a career outside academia as I knew I didn't want to follow the standard path to a professorship. An opportunity came along through my personal network (take note!!) to work at a hedge fund, and as I had been preparing for such an opportunity I felt ready to take the job. Our company is essentially a start-up, and so I spend my time building the quantitative end of the business.