This content is from: Corner Office

W.K. Kellogg CIO to Retire, Setting Search for Replacement in Motion

Joel Wittenberg has been with the $7.8 billion foundation since 2009.

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation’s chief investment officer and vice president is set to retire at the end of January 2021, Institutional Investor has learned.  

Joel Wittenberg has been the $7.8 billion foundation’s chief investment officer and vice president since 2009, a spokesperson for the foundation said via email.  

The Battle Creek, Michigan-based foundation launched its search for a new CIO publicly early in December, a job listing shows. Engy Lamour and Allen Geller at Raines International are running the search process, the listing shows.  

Wittenberg began working at the Kellogg Company in 2000, spending nine years as the cereal purveyor’s vice president and treasurer before joining the foundation, his LinkedIn profile shows.  

Before joining Kellogg, Wittenberg worked as the vice president and treasurer for Pennsylvania-based manufacturing company Armstrong World Industries for three years. He previously served as the director of treasury and investments at Dow Chemical and was a fixed income portfolio manager at Alexander Hamilton Life Insurance Co. before that, his LinkedIn profile shows.  

Wittenberg is a member of the Michigan State University Foundation’s board of directors and the Kalamazoo City and County Retirement Board, his LinkedIn profile shows. He also is a director for the Kellogg Company’s 25-year fund, it says.  

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation has a mission-driven investment program that launched in 2007. The foundation invests a portion of its assets in the strategy, which is primarily focused on private-market investment managers.  

The investments are specifically targeted at benefitting children, working families, and equitable communities, with a geographic emphasis on Michigan, Mississippi, New Mexico, and New Orleans. So far, the foundation has invested $100 million in the initiative. 

[II Deep Dive: Asset Management Made Bad Decisions Around Race. Now Is the Time to Change That.

Institutional Investor previously reported on the foundation’s work on becoming an anti-racist organization. Wittenberg started an initiative in the investment program called Expanding Equity, a framework for tackling deep-seated iniquities. The foundation also shares the framework with external managers.  

According to II’s earlier reporting, the program has been adopted by KKR, Värde Partners, and Beacon Capital Partners. 

Related Content