Rhode Island Taps Retired CalPERS Exec as Its Next CIO

Eric Baggesen, who led asset allocation at CalPERS until December 2020, started his new role on Monday.

Eric Baggesen (Brendan Hoffman/Bloomberg)

Eric Baggesen

(Brendan Hoffman/Bloomberg)

An ex-California Public Employees’ Retirement System executive has been selected to lead Rhode Island’s state pension as its new chief investment officer.

Eric Baggesen, a longtime CalPERS managing director who retired in December 2020, has joined Rhode Island’s treasury, a spokesperson confirmed Monday.

The incoming CIO will replace Andrew Junkin who, after two years at the helm, left to become the Virginia Retirement System’s investment chief.

Baggesen spent 16 years as a CalPERS employee, working his way up from senior portfolio manager covering global equities to managing investment director of asset allocation, a role he held for over seven years.

Before joining CalPERS, Baggesen served as head of State Street’s emerging markets unit, leading that team for eight years, his LinkedIn profile shows. Prior to State Street, he worked as a senior manager of equity investments at PanAgora Asset Management, an associate vice president at Normal L. Barnett & Co., and a financial analyst at Brown & Sharpe.

This job is a bit of a homecoming for Baggesen: He attended the University of Rhode Island for both undergraduate and graduate school. In addition to holding an MBA, Baggesen is a Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst and Chartered Financial Analyst.