Cornell CIO to step down

Albert Edwards has led the Office of University Investments, which has a sizeable allocation to private equity, since May 2012.

Albert “AJ” Edwards, chief investment officer at Cornell University, is stepping down at the end of March, according to an article in The Cornell Chronicle, which is part of the university’s public relations.

The university has appointed senior investment officers Cody Danks Burke and Roger Vincent as interim co-CIOs and intends to name Edwards’ replacement by 15 April.

Edwards, who has led the Office of University Investment since May 2012 and served as interim the previous year, joined the office as a senior investment officer in 2008.

“After eight rewarding years in the investment office, I’ve decided now is the time to pursue other interests,” Edwards told The Cornell Chronicle.

According to the announcement the current value of Cornell’s portfolio is $6 billion. The university has a 17.31 percent allocation to private equity, according to PEI Research & Analytics.

Cornell’s investment office is responsible for implementing policies established by the university’s board of trustees and investment committee, and “helps support the University’s mission of being top research university that provides accessibility to students”, according to its website.

“The endowment has had well over $3 billion in investment gains since the depths of the recession,” Edwards said.

Cornell’s executive vice president and chief financial officer Joanne DeStefano said Edwards was “essential” in helping the university endowment recover from the global financial crisis, and praised his active approach in identifying new markets in which to invest.