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Family Offices Chasing Wealthy’s $46 Trillion in Assets


Karen McNeill, Ph.D., used to teach history at the University of California, Berkeley. In June, she took a job as head of family history with Ascent Private Capital Management, a new unit of U.S. Bancorp that manages the affairs of ultra-wealthy families.

McNeill’s job is to help Ascent’s clients discover their pasts, skeletons and all, and gain perspective on their Gatsby-sized fortunes. The job is the creation of Michael Cole, Ascent’s president, who’s determined to make Minneapolis-based U.S. Bancorp, the fifth-largest U.S. lender, a contender in the market for high-end financial services.