NEW YORK, Oct. 16, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- The Rockefeller Foundation announced today that Chief Investment Officer Donna Dean will retire from her position towards the end of this year. Dean has served as the Foundation's Chief Investment Officer since 2001, after joining as Director of Investments in 1995. During her tenure, the Foundation's endowment has grown from $2.4 billion (1995) to $4.44 billion (2017).
The Foundation also announced that Chun Lai will take on the role of Chief Investment Officer once Dean retires. Lai joined The Rockefeller Foundation in 1996 and currently serves as Deputy Chief Investment Officer.
"It has been a dream come true to be able to use my investment skills on behalf of an organization that does such impactful work around the world," said Donna Dean, Chief Investment Officer, The Rockefeller Foundation. "Over the past 24 years I've had the opportunity to build and retain an incredible team of highly-skilled investors I am extremely proud to call my colleagues. I appreciate all the many wonderful individuals who have made my experience at the Foundation an exceptional one."
"Donna is a seasoned, successful investor and terrific colleague to us all," said Dr. Rajiv J. Shah, President, The Rockefeller Foundation. "Under her leadership, our Investments Office has flourished and she has met the challenge of growing the Foundation's endowment with extreme care and diligence. We thank her for her many contributions, and are fortunate that she has built such a strong team of dedicated investors."
Dean is widely recognized as an outstanding and accomplished leader in the investment sector. In 2015, she received the inaugural CIO Pioneer Award from Chief Investment Officer, where she was noted as one of the 'finest, most successful asset management professionals in the industry.' She was also named the U.S. Investment Management Award Winner for Large Foundation Manager of the Year in 2011 by Institutional Investor.
Prior to joining the Rockefeller Foundation, Dean served as Director of Investments for Yale University, where she was responsible for real estate, as well as oversight of the New Haven Initiative community investment program. Dean serves as a trustee of Harbor Funds. She is also on the investment committee of Queens University of Charlotte.
"Donna is not only a trailblazer in the investment sector, she is an effective team builder and leader, and I am grateful for her mentorship," said Chun Lai, Deputy Chief Investment Officer, The Rockefeller Foundation. "I am honored to take on the role of leading the Investments Office to help ensure the Foundation continues to deliver impact for the world's most vulnerable."
As Deputy Chief Investment Officer, Lai oversees investment research, asset allocation and portfolio management for the Foundation's endowment. Before serving in his current role, he managed the Foundation's hedge funds, distressed debt, real assets and fixed income portfolios.
Prior to joining the Foundation, Lai served as assistant investment officer for alternative investments at the State of Connecticut Retirement and Trust Funds from 1992 to 1996. He began his career as an aeronautics engineer in China.
Dr. Shah continued, "Chun's proven experience, track record and leadership make him a natural fit to take on the role of Chief Investment Officer. He brings investment excellence combined with a deep knowledge of the Foundation and its mission. I am confident Chun will continue to expertly steward our endowment to enable our work to deliver impact at scale."
About The Rockefeller Foundation
The Rockefeller Foundation advances new frontiers of science, data, policy, and innovation to solve global challenges related to health, food, power, and economic mobility. As a science-driven philanthropy focused on building collaborative relationships with partners and grantees, The Rockefeller Foundation seeks to inspire and foster large-scale human impact that promotes the well-being of humanity throughout the world by identifying and accelerating breakthrough solutions, ideas and conversations. For more information, sign up for our newsletter at rockefellerfoundation.org and follow us on Twitter @RockefellerFdn.
SOURCE The Rockefeller Foundation