This year’s goal at ConsortiumEAST? Inspire provocative conversation, out-of-the box thinking, and increase interest in investing with small and diverse managers topped our list. Based on participant feedback: Mission accomplished.
Comments from some of the attendees underscore the value of going beyond basic panel discussions and delving deeper into the issues that both managers and institutional investors are facing. This is the defining difference of ConsortiumEAST. From the audience, we heard:
“This was the best Consortium—ever!”
“There was real talk—the content went beyond traditional conference conversation.”
“The LP and GP quality was extremely high.”
Our video team captured more feedback—
As part of your input, we also gathered ideas for 2017:
Have more suggestions you’d like to share? Take a minute and speak up using our online survey. We will review all comments as part of our 2017 planning:
LP Survey (includes fofs, moms)
GP Survey (includes consultants, others)
I’m pleased to share key highlights—and images—from the event. And look forward to seeing you in 2017.
Producer | ConsortiumEAST
Our 13th annual gathering was productive and drew a broader mix of managers and institutional investors than ever before. This year’s audience also included a host of consultants—all actively working with their clients to identify and promote emerging managers.
With a 13-year track record as our springboard, Renae Griffin, CEO of RG + Associates and Founder of ConsortiumEAST reflected on progress to date—and how more needs to be done to ensure better traction between small and diverse and institutional investors. Who were the diverse managers 13+ years ago—where are they today? Does their AUM growth compare to their peers? If not, why not? How has the landscape changed? What does that mean to small and diverse managers and their fundraising efforts? Challenging the audience to reflect on areas of growth—and needed expansion—provided an ideal framework for the day’s discussions.
“Change hasn’t happened as fast – as big – as we have all hoped. We’re here to find out how to change that.” That’s how John Rogers, Founder and CEO of Ariel Capital opened our general session, in conversation with Robert Raben, President & CEO of the Raben Group, the team that’s driving the Diverse Asset Managers Initiative (DAMI). ConsortiumEAST attendees learned more about the effort and how to get involved. Key take-aways:
A growing number of LPs are aligning their leadership, core values and investment strategies for added impact—it’s what we call Investing by Example. Kelly Williams, Senior Advisor, GCM Grosvenor, facilitated and lead the conversation with Doug Brown, Senior Vice President & CIO – Exelon Corporation; Juan Martinez, Vice President, CFO & Treasurer – Knight Foundation; Gregory Francis, CIO – New York State Insurance Fund; and Bill Dempsey, CFO – Service Employees International Union. Key takeaways and tips for ways those in attendance could excel included:
Areas of discussion during the three-hour Intensive moved beyond why investing with emerging managers matters (alpha with mitigated risk) to the current and expected challenges LPs and their staff are facing. This year, the audience mix for part of the Intensive included consultants, with a key part of the discussion focused on how LPs and consultants can forge stronger, more productive relationships. Exploring the role of trustees in driving emerging manager policies and actions was also a new theme—one that surfaced based on feedback from past Intensive attendees. Key takeaways from the different Intensive sessions include:
Launching a new venture requires a masterful orchestration—from fundraising and operations to the business of investing. Bootcamp Master of Ceremonies Lawrence Manson, CEO of NexTier Consulting Solutions, LLC and industry experts helped more than 120 managers navigate the challenging terrain. Here are some of the key takeaways:
Each year, we spotlight individuals and institutions for their leadership in the emerging manager community. Master of Ceremonies Victor Hymes, Board Member – Brookings Institution, NRDC; CEO & CIO – Legato Capital Management, LLC reinforced the need for standout leaders—and helped showcase this year’s award recipients.
Stand-out Committee Member Awards
Kristie Goodman Davis, Director – Wind Point Partners
Lawrence C. Manson, Jr., CEO – NexTier Consulting Solutions, LLC
Carra Wallace, Chief Diversity Officer – New York City Comptroller’s Office
Clinton L Stevenson, CIO – The Clinton Group LLC
Consortium has become recognized as the “must attend event,” in large part because of the community and commitment of our Advisory and Planning Committee Members. We’ll honor the individual who went above and beyond, committing their time, talent and energy to help in identifying key issues, speakers and more.
Presenter: Renae Griffin, CEO – RG + Associates
Stand-out Emerging Manager Award
Brightwood Capital Advisors, LLC
An emerging manager on the fast track—strong track record, compelling strategy, cohesive team. This team has garnered growing institutional interest in its initial foray into the market and has exhibited a thoughtful, disciplined approach to building its AUM via a variety of LPs.
Presenter: Carra Wallace, Chief Diversity Officer – Office of New York City Comptroller Scott M. Stringer
Stand-out Institutional Investor Award
Teachers’ Retirement System of the State of Illinois
An Institutional Investor recognized for their unwavering commitment to the growth and success of the emerging manager space—not the size of their EM allocations. They meet with managers, speak at conferences, and ensure their fund implements sound strategies to grow their emerging manager portfolios. They serve champions in their interactions with small and diverse managers and their LP peers.
Presenter: Gennell Jefferson, SVP, Strategic Business Development – GE Asset Management Inc.
EM Legacy Award
The Honorable Donald R. White, Treasurer of Alameda County
Donald White was honored for being the defender—the protector—of what is right. A longtime champion of inclusion, throughout his career he has been a strong and vocal advocate for small and diverse manager inclusion and opportunity.
Presenter: Blair C. Smith, Senior Investment Officer, Emerging Managers – State of New York Common Retirement
Our afternoon sessions provided small group forums for delving into allocator-specific issues–and showcased how the base of investors within the EM arena is broadening.
Facilitator: Hugh Short, Co-Founder & Chairman/CEO – Pt Capital
Clark Cheng, CIO – Merrimac Corporation
Frank Turner, Portfolio Manager – MIG Capital
Katherine Hill Ritchie, CEO – PEX Global
Amir H. Rafizadeh, Senior Vice President – Tri-State Capital Family Office
FUND OF FUNDS
Facilitator: James Mitchell, Managing Director – The Rock Creek Group
Drianne Benner, Managing Director – Appomattox Advisory
Patricia Miller Zollar, Managing Director – Neuberger Berman
Yokasta Segura- Baez, Principal – Pantheon Ventures
Patricia Bartlett, Chief Operating Officer – Resmark Impact Ventures
Larissa Herczeg, Trustee – Roosevelt University; Managing Director – Oak Street Real Estate Capital
ACTIVE PUBLIC PENSION FUNDS
Facilitator: Robert Farmer, Managing Director and Founding Partner – Advent Capital Management
Andrew Palmer, CIO – Maryland State Retirement and Pension System
David Ourlicht, Board Member – New York State Insurance Fund
Jerry Albright, Deputy Chief CIO – Teacher Retirement System of Texas
ACTIVE FOUNDATIONS & ENDOWMENTS
Facilitator: Vincent Williams, Director of Marketing – Lombardia Capital Partners
Kenneth Jones, II, CFO – Annie E. Casey Foundation
Alena Kuprevich, Managing Director – Disciplina Group
Eric Golberg, Trustee – ELCA Foundation
Brian O’Neil, CIO – Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
With a lens on trends and issues within a discrete investment area or asset class, these closing workshops provided an opportunity for small group discussions between LPs and GPs.
PRIVATE EQUITY / VENTURE CAPITAL
Facilitator: Laureen Costa, Portfolio Manager – JPMorgan Asset Management
Kavita Nayar, Private Equity Investment Manager – Duke Management Company
Kola Olofinboba, Managing Partner – Fairview Capital Partners
Dana Johns, Senior Analyst – Maryland State Retirement and Pension System
Ron Funderburk, Investment Director – North Carolina Department of State Treasurer
Facilitator: Michael Beal, CEO – Data Capital Management
Pete Keliuotis, Senior Managing Director – Cliffwater, Inc.
Michael Haddad, Head of Public Markets and Tradeable Securities – Office of New York City Comptroller
Vinod Kurup, Founding Partner – Pine Street Alternative Asset Management
Robert Passarella, Manager – Protégé Partners
Kirk Sims, Investment Officer – Teachers’ Retirement System of the State of Illinois
Facilitator: Careina Williams, Principal – Artemis Real Estate Partners, LLC
Sharmila Kassam, Deputy CIO – Employees Retirement System of Texas
Peter Braffman, Managing Director – GCM Grosvenor
Janet Londoño-Valle, Senior Investment Officer – New York City Comptroller’s Office
Ishika Bansal, Vice President – Townsend Group
GLOBAL EQUITIES / FIXED INCOME
Facilitator: Cynthia Tusan, President – Strategic Global Advisors, LLC
Rosa Vasquez, Investment Officer – Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund
Colleen Smiley, Senior Vice President – Meketa Investment Group
Safia Mehta, CFA, Senior V.P., Portfolio Manager, Global Equities – Progress Investment Management Company
Howard Sanders, Investment Committee – Riverside Church Endowment
Events like ConsortiumEAST involve a mix of team members working together. A special thanks to our industry and media partners—and our sponsors, including a host of new organizations—that helped make 2017 our best year yet.
RG + Associates and the Consortium team are active year-round. Follow us online to stay in touch and on top of emerging manager-related news and happenings.
In the coming weeks, check the website for information on ConsortiumWEST in Los Angeles, January 2017 and ConsortiumEAST June 14-15, 2017, Intercontinental Times Square New York.
About RG + Associates
Since its launch in 2001, RG + Associates has been in the forefront of helping high-level institutional investors, federal, state and local government agencies, corporations, and non-profits with effective strategies and tools attract and diversify their business partners through client and signature educational meetings and events and consulting services.