Zachary Ziliak

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Zachary Ziliak
Ziliak 2012.jpg
Occupation Managing Partner
Employer Ziliak Law, LLC
Location Chicago
LinkedIn Profile

Zachary Ziliak is an attorney and the principal and founder of Ziliak Law, LLC, a Chicago-based financial services focused law firm.

He is independent fund director at Bell Rock Corporate Services Limited in the Cayman Islands. He was appointed to that position in July 2013.[1]

Before attending law school, Ziliak worked in the financial sector as a trader and quantitative analyst. He then spent six years in Mayer Brown's Litigation & Dispute Resolution practice, with a concentration in complex financial, mathematical, and computer-related concerns, before breaking off in May 2013 to found his own firm.[2]

In October 2012, Ziliak was named co-chair of a committee within the Chicago Quantitative Alliance that is drafting a best-practices document for the quantitative trading industry. Additionally, he is co-vice-chair of the AT 9000 drafting committee, a Chicago-based initiative that is developing a set of quality management standards for automated and high-frequency trading based on ISO 9000 engineering standards.


Ziliak began his career in 1998 with UBS, where he worked as an associate director and "quant," writing code, modeling processes, pricing derivatives and managing risk. He left the firm in 2002 to join a hedge fund, Matlock Capital Management, where he designed and implemented an option trading system and led a team of traders. [3]

In 2003, Ziliak made the decision to attend law school, graduating at the top of his class at Loyola University in 2006. While in law school, he worked as a consultant for optionMONSTER, where he developed an education program for options traders. After earning his JD, he worked for one year as a law clerk to Judge Janice Rogers Brown at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. Ziliak joined Mayer Brown in Chicago in 2007 and formed Ziliak Law in 2013.

John Lothian News Interviews[edit]

A Tale of Two Issues: Zach Ziliak Breaks Down the HFT Debate - May 2014
Today’s financial markets can be summed up in three words – global, fast, and complex. But as the market structure evolves, so must the regulatory structure that oversees it. John Lothian News has spoken with several industry experts to create this series on the evolution of financial market structure.

In part 6, quant -turned-attorney Zach Ziliak points out that Michael Lewis’ Flash Boys, like any good novel, gets broken down into good vs. evil, and HFT has become an easy target. He says it is important to separate the debate in two – automated systems’ day to day activities, and issues related to the flash crash and other system failures.

HFT Rules: Three Part HFT Harmony - January 2013
High frequency trading (HFT) has been in the financial press a lot over the past several years. From the Flash Crash of 2010 to the collapse of Knight Capital in 2012, trading glitches and the negative impact of HFT on markets and investor confidence is well-documented. In this segment of the Restoring Customer Confidence series, Ziliak Law proprietor and former Mayer Brown attorney Zachary Ziliak outlines the three sources that will address HFT and help restore customer confidence.

Ziliak says regulatory bodies will likely continue to address HFT guidelines, exchanges are imposing new fees on HFT practices and AT 9000, standards system for HFT practices, will help establish a higher bar for HFT participants. [4]



Ziliak earned four undergraduate degrees (2 BS and 2 BA) from Indiana University in 1994. While at Indiana, he studied abroad at the University of Hamburg. From 1995-1998, he studied at the University of Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar, pursuing a DPhil in Mathematics. He eventually left at the ‘all but dissertation’ phase when he took a job with UBS. In 2002 he earned an MBA in Finance and Strategy from University of Chicago Booth School of Business, graduating with honors. In 2006, he earned a JD summa cum laude from Loyola University Chicago School of Law.