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Yusko to Step Down as Investment Chief of Endowment Fund

Mark Yusko said he’s stepping down as chief investment officer of the $3.5 billion Endowment Fund, citing management differences with Salient Partners LP, according to a letter sent to clients.

The fund is managed by a joint venture of Houston-based Salient, which handles marketing, and Yusko’s Morgan Creek Capital Management LLC, based in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, which oversees the assets. The fund mimics the strategies of big endowments such as those at Yale University and the Ford Foundation, using investments in hedge funds, private equity and real estate to augment stock and bond holdings.

“After nearly a decade of working with our joint venture partner in Texas, we found ourselves differing on material aspects of how to best run an Endowment portfolio and run the business, so we decided that a change was appropriate,” Yusko wrote in the letter, a copy of which was obtained by Bloomberg News.

Salient said in October that it would limit withdrawals to 5 percent of assets as of Dec. 31, after clients pulled more than $1 billion during 2012 amid lackluster returns.

Yusko, 49, couldn’t immediately be reached for comment. Chris Moon, a spokeswoman for Salient, didn’t immediately return a phone call seeking comment.

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