This Is Who George Soros Trusts to Oversee His $25 Billion Family Officeby and
Fitzpatrick is the first female CIO at Soros family office
Former CIO Burdick will return to managing money at the firm
George Soros tapped Dawn Fitzpatrick from UBS Asset Management to oversee his $25 billion family office, replacing Ted Burdick a year after he stepped into the role, according to people with knowledge of the matter.
Fitzpatrick, 46, was global head of equities, multi-asset investing and the O’Connor hedge fund unit at UBS Group AG’s money management arm. She’ll be the first woman to hold the CIO role at Soros Fund Management, which is among the largest family offices in the U.S.
The move marks the seventh time Soros has appointed a new chief investment officer since the billionaire philanthropist decided to scale back risk following the departures of star traders Stanley Druckenmiller and Nicholas Roditi in April 2000. Early last year, Burdick replaced Scott Bessent, who oversaw investments for four years before leaving at the end of 2015 to start his own hedge-fund firm. Since then, Soros has become more involved in day-to-day trading at his family office, taking a series of bearish bets. The firm returned about 5 percent in 2016, a person with knowledge of the matter said.
"Her expertise at allocating risk across a diverse set of strategies makes her a perfect fit for the Soros family office," said Nicolas Roth, co-head of alternative assets at Geneva-based investment firm Reyl & Cie, which invests in hedge funds. “O’Connor is a recognized multi-strategy platform.”
Fitzpatrick will stay at UBS until the end of March and the bank will announce her replacement in due course, according to a memo from the bank’s head of asset management, Ulrich Koerner, that was seen by Bloomberg news.
“Dawn has led our efforts to leverage our best talent, processes and tools across our investment platform,” Koerner said. “We have a clear strategy which we are executing upon and a strong management team of seasoned investors responsible for driving each of the investments businesses forward.”
Fitzpatrick joined O’Connor’s predecessor firm as a clerk on the American Stock Exchange after graduating from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School in 1992. She was made head of the business as a standalone company within UBS Global Asset Management in 2013 and two years later was promoted to run a new unit that would combine the hedge fund operations with equities and multi-asset investing at UBS’s $645 billion money-management business.
While Fitzpatrick’s expertise isn’t in macro investing, people familiar with the firm say her experience with asset-allocation will be a good fit for the family office, which funds Soros’s Open Society Foundations.
“Dawn is the pinnacle of the modern management paradigm, rapier sharp investment brain, well tested soft skills and kinetic like energy levels," said Andrew Thompson, a managing partner at London-based MSK Capital Partners and her former colleague at O’Connor. "I am relieved that talent like this has found its way to the top of the business."
Burdick will return to managing credit investments at the firm. He had been associated with Soros for more than 15 years, and sat on the investment committee at the time of his promotion. A 1992 graduate of Princeton University with a degree in economics, he started his career at Bankers Trust, where he worked in high-yield corporate finance and proprietary trading. He started at Soros in April 2000 and left in 2005 to join Camulos Capital LP, a firm that managed money for Soros and others. He re-joined the family office in January 2010.