Management Team

Essex Capital’s management provides an actively managed approach towards our portfolio.

Ralph T. IannelliChief Executive Officer

Founded in 1993 by Mr. Iannelli, Essex Capital Corporation, a Santa Barbara based asset management firm, has funded over 1 billion dollars of leased equipment including a number of transactions in the venture capital space. Mr. Iannelli maintains relationships with some of the largest and well-known venture capital firms, private equity, and growth equity firms.

Mr. Iannelli began his career in 1970 in securities trading and sales at Loeb, Rhoades and Company. He later held management positions at IBM, and as an Executive Vice President at Nixdorf Computer and Pitney Bowes. Mr. Iannelli was a Partner at American Computer Leasing Corporation and a Principal at RAM Capital Corporation.

Mr. Iannelli is an investor and active board member for a broad range of companies including Twinlab LLC, and is a member of the Board of Directors of The Santa Barbara Foundation, The Santa Barbara Performance Center for the Arts, and iCivics. Mr. Iannelli is also involved with numerous local foundations in the Santa Barbara area, focused on education, law enforcement and teaches classes at UCSB and Loyola Marymount University. Mr. Iannelli is a graduate of St. Josephs College and attended the University of Chicago.


Brad Wheatley – Executive Vice President, Finance

Mr. Wheatley manages all the finance and accounting functions of Essex. In addition, he is part of the management team underwriting, documenting and monitoring Essex’s equipment lease portfolio.

Mr. Wheatley has over 35 years of experience in corporate finance, credit underwriting and equipment leasing. Most recently, he was Chief Financial Officer at First Financial Corporate Services, Inc., a privately held middle market lessor.

Prior to First Financial, Mr. Wheatley held senior finance positions at Third Coast Capital, the venture leasing division of DVI, Inc. and Comdisco, Inc., including corporate oversight of Comdisco’s venture lease division.

Mr. Wheatley began his career at Aetna Life & Casualty in its private placement department, eventually becoming the co-head of the department. Mr. Wheatley is a graduate of Union College (BA) and The Wharton School (MBA).


Kelly C. Richards – Vice President, Administration

Miss Richards joined Essex Capital Corporation at the beginning of 2016. As accounting manager she is responsible for keeping Essex’ records accurate, up to date, and compliant. She also works closely with the Chief Executive Officer coordinating administrative functions. Her previous experience in management and bookkeeping are beneficial to assisting the daily operations at Essex.

Miss Richards graduated from the University of California Santa Barbara with a B.A. in Environmental Studies and a minor in Exercise and Health Science. She is currently continuing her education through the UCSB Extension Program and is pursuing a Certificate of Professional Accounting with plans to be a CPA candidate by 2017. Outside of her studies, Miss Richards practices hot yoga to let off steam.