Family connections got Jessica Reed Saouaf, 36, her entry into hedge funds, but not in the usual way. Raised in San Francisco, Reed Saouaf moved to the East Coast to study economics and psychology at Wellesley College. A family friend owned and operated a deli in the lobby of the San Francisco building where outsourced-CIO firm Hall Capital Partners (then called Laurel Management Co.) has its offices. The deli owner told Hall Capital founder and CIO Kathryn Hall that she should hire Reed Saouaf. The graduate joined the fledgling investment advisory firm as an analyst in 1999, when it had $6 billion in assets. Today, Hall invests more than $27.5 billion for clients and Reed Saouaf, who has an MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business, is director of research. John Powers, president and CEO of Stanford Universitys endowment and Halls former research head, jokes that he rescued Reed Saouaf from making sandwiches in the lobby. That isnt really the case, but she does still get free coffee every morning.