OCC, OIC Announce Joseph W. Sullivan Achievement Award Winner

Recipient to be Honored at the 2021 Options Industry Conference

April 26, 2021
Chicago -

OCC, the world's largest equity derivatives clearing organization, today announced that The Options Industry Council will honor the late Joe Levin, former Cboe Vice President, Research and Product Development, who led the development of the Cboe Volatility Index® (VIX®), with the Joseph W. Sullivan Options Industry Achievement Award. The award will be presented virtually at the 2021 Options Industry Conference on April 28.

The Joseph W. Sullivan Options Industry Achievement Award is given to individuals in recognition of achievement in the listed options industry through outstanding contributions in broad-ranging areas including education, innovation and product development. Joe Levin is being honored for work he and then-Duke University Professor Robert Whaley accomplished in devising the concept for a volatility benchmark derived from index options prices, known as the Cboe Volatility Index, or VIX. Mr. Levin and his team were also responsible for establishing the index options industry with the creation of the first security index options, OEX and SPX, along with numerous options-based benchmark index products. Other groundbreaking products developed under his leadership included the first tradable volatility products (VIX options and futures), customizable exchange traded options contracts (FLEX), long dated options (LEAPS), and short-term, weekly options (Weeklys) which were quickly adapted and popularized industry wide.

“The U.S. equity options industry is fortunate to have benefitted from Joe Levin’s remarkable contributions to the equity derivatives markets,” said Denise Knabjian, Managing Director, Investor Education at OCC. “We are proud to honor his legacy with the distinguished Sullivan Achievement Award.”

“Joe Levin was a true visionary who was passionate about his work and growing the utility of the options product,” said Ed Tilly, Cboe Global Markets Chairman, President and CEO. “Over the course of his remarkable career that spanned more than three decades, Joe oversaw the creation of numerous revolutionary products that today, have come to define the market for listed options trading. He was a beloved colleague and the Cboe family is pleased to see his many significant contributions to our industry recognized.”     

The Options Industry Conference is attended by representatives from all segments of the options business, including institutional and retail firm sales, strategy and trading professionals, buy-side end users, liquidity provider organizations, technology services representatives, and exchange decision makers and key personnel, both domestic U.S. and international. Featured keynote speakers for this year’s conference include the Honorable Allison Herren Lee, Commissioner of the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC), and the Honorable Randal K. Quarles, Vice Chair for Supervision on the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. For more information and to register for the 2021 Options Industry Conference, visit:


About OCC

The Options Clearing Corporation (OCC) is the world's largest equity derivatives clearing organization. Founded in 1973, OCC operates under the jurisdiction of both the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as a registered clearing agency and the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) as a Derivatives Clearing Organization. Named 2020 Best Clearing House - Equities by Markets Media for the third consecutive year, OCC now provides central counterparty (CCP) clearing and settlement services to 19 exchanges and trading platforms for options, financial futures, and securities lending transactions. More information about OCC is available at

About OIC

OIC is an industry resource managed by OCC, the world’s largest equity derivatives clearing organization. Its mission is to provide free and unbiased education to retail investors, financial advisors and institutions about the benefits and risks of exchange-listed options. OIC offers education which includes webinars, podcasts, videos, investing tools, and live help. OIC’s Roundtable is the independent advisory body of the Council and is comprised of representatives from the exchanges, member brokerage firms and OCC. For more information on the educational services OIC provides for investors, visit


Cboe®, Cboe Global Markets®, Cboe Volatility Index® and VIX® are registered trademarks of Cboe Exchange, Inc.  Standard & Poor’s®, S&P®, S&P 100®, S&P 500® and SPX® are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor’s Financial Services LLC and have been licensed for use by Cboe Exchange, Inc. All other trademarks and service marks are the property of their respective owners.

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