Texas A&M Names New Investment Chief of $1.4 Billion EndowmentBy
Alternative investments head Ben Wall replaces Janet Handley
Handley is retiring on Dec. 31 after 15 years with foundation
Texas A&M Foundation has promoted Ben Wall to vice president of investments overseeing $1.4 billion of assets, replacing Janet Handley who will retire on Dec. 31 after 15 years with the organization.
Wall, 36, is the alternative investments director at the foundation and was hired in 2008, the office said in a Nov. 23 statement. He was previously a senior investment analyst with AIG Investments, according to a LinkedIn profile.
Texas A&M is among a group of high-profile schools to seek new investment leadership this year. Harvard University in September hired Columbia University’s N.P. ‘Narv’ Narvekar to run its endowment office, and the University of Texas Investment Management Co. is searching for a replacement for Bruce Zimmerman. Pamela Peedin will step down as chief investment officer overseeing Dartmouth College’s $4.5 billion endowment in June for unspecified personal reasons.
Texas A&M lost 1.7 percent on its investments in the year ended June 30 while gaining 4.6 percent on average over five years. About 450 endowments lost 2.6 percent on average in fiscal 2016 through June, according to an estimate by Cambridge Associates, making it the worst year for school funds since 2009. The Texas A&M endowment has rebounded, gaining 8.1 percent for the year through Sept. 30.
Handley, 62, was hired by Texas A&M Foundation in 2001 when it had assets of $414 million, the foundation said in the statement. Wall has worked directly with Handley for eight years, Monika Blackwell, a spokeswoman for the foundation, said in an e-mail. He received a bachelor’s and master’s degree in accounting from Texas A&M.