These Are Institutional Investor’s 2021 Rising Stars

The 12 allocators — nominated by their peers and bosses — will be honored at the fourth annual Allocators’ Choice Awards on September 22.

Illustration by II

Illustration by II

After many institutions posted record-breaking performance in the latest fiscal year, some industry experts speculate that asset owners — particularly chief investment officers — will decide to go out on a good note and retire by year’s end.

Enter the next generation, the Institutional Investor Rising Stars. These 12 allocators, who work across the U.S. in both public and private institutions, are expected to be the next best leaders for pensions, endowments, foundations, health care funds, corporate plans, and family offices.

The editorial team selected the II Rising Stars from a pool of talented allocators nominated by their peers and bosses in May and June. Each of the selected Rising Stars will be honored during Institutional Investor’s fourth annual Allocators’ Choice Awards, to be held on September 22 at the Mandarin Oriental hotel in New York City.

Asset owners still have time to vote for their favorite nominees to receive an Allocators’ Choice Award in categories including Partnership of the Year, Team of the Year, and CIO of the Year. To submit a ballot, please use this link. The deadline for allocators to submit their votes is September 1. Allocators can also request an invitation to the event here.

Here are the 2021 Rising Stars:

Steven Wilson, director, stable value hedge funds and ACWI beta one, at the Teacher Retirement System of Texas, based on his work to support the fund’s improved ability to evaluate investments and improve portfolio construction. He has also led some of the fund’s most “innovative allocations.” In addition to overseeing $15 billion in outperforming assets, Wilson mentors junior staffers and is on the Managed Funds Association’s advisory council.

Tom Borghard, director of pension investments at Raytheon Technologies, for his work on manager selection in fixed income, capital market research, and strategic asset allocation at Raytheon.

Lyndsey Farris, principal investment officer at the Connecticut Retirement Plans and Trust Funds, based on her work on fixed income investing and sourcing strong managers.

Justin Maistrow, senior investment strategist for the State of Rhode Island, for his leadership in portfolio construction, having helped form and implement Rhode Island’s defined benefit strategic asset allocation. One of his nominators said Maistrow is a “next-generation all-star” who is “already making a big difference today.”

Sharif Siddiqui, director of investments at the James Irvine Foundation, for helping to drive the fund’s 10-year performance, which is in the top 5 percent of all U.S. endowments and foundations. Siddiqui has helped manage the fund’s allocations to emerging investments in cryptocurrency, machine learning, India, and China.

Chad Myhre, director of investments at the Heinz Family Office, for his work heading up public markets investing, co-managing opportunistic allocations, and portfolio construction. One of his nominators said Myhre is “under the radar but one of the smartest allocators I know.”

Adam Schwab, head of alternative assets and defined benefits pension at Modern Woodmen of America, for his oversight of more than 60 alternative investments, service on several limited partner advisory committees, and creation of an internal cash flow forecast model. Schwab shares his investment insights on his own website.

Kelli Washington, managing director of research and investment strategy at Cleveland Clinic, for her work on shaping and implementing investment policy across the portfolio and in providing quantitative analysis and market research to the investment office. As one source said, “any time an interesting CIO position pops up,” they expect Washington to step into the role.

Ben Bronson, director of liquid strategies at the Fire and Police Association of Colorado, for his work on the plan’s public equity, fixed income, and hedge fund investments. In 2020, Bronson helped the fund build-out its first collateralized loan investment.

Anupam Kathpalia, investment manager at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, for his work in supporting the cancer center’s mission using his strong public and private markets investing skills.

Jingwun (Grace) Moore, portfolio manager at the Georgia Tech Foundation, for her work in managing the fund’s global equities portfolio. Moore serves on the investment committee for the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta and has written on how data science will transform investing.

Jason Rector, managing analyst at the State of Wisconsin Investment Board, for his focus on portfolio construction and risk management for SWIB. Rector’s areas of coverage range from fundamental equities to reinsurance and litigation arbitrage. In 2017, he was named a Hedge Fund Rising Star by Institutional Investor.