New York hires Credit Suisse exec

Rafique DeCastro oversees private equity fund due diligence, portfolio construction and monitoring for New York City’s $115bn pension system. He formerly worked at Credit Suisse’s Customized Fund Investment Group.

Rafique DeCastro was hired as an investment officer for private equity in the New York City Comptroller’s Office, which oversees New York City’s five pension funds.

The position was created in January, according to a spokesman for New York City Comptroller John Liu.

“With $12 billion of commitments we needed to increase our staff,” said the spokesman. Liu is the investment advisor, custodian and trustee for the $115 billion pension system.

DeCastro will perform private equity fund due diligence, portfolio construction and monitoring, said the spokesman. He previously worked at Credit Suisse Customized Fund Investment Group.

DeCastro’s hire is New York’s latest move in dedicating more resources to due diligence and transparency.

Earlier this month, the pension system announced it will begin posting pension fund information online and provide webcasts of pension board meetings 1 July.

The new initiative, Pension NYC, will give the public access to information about the New York City pension system including board meetings and agendas, portfolio holdings by money managers, detailed quarterly reports and comprehensive annual reports. Also, pension board meetings will be webcast live and then archived on the comptroller’s website.

Separately, New York named this month Barry Miller head of private equity, responsible for supervising the system’s $12 billion commitment to the asset class. The position had been vacant since 2005. Deputy comptroller and chief investment officer Lawrence Schloss had overseen private equity activity at the pension since January 2010, prior to which director of private markets Elizabeth Caldas held the position. Caldas now reports to Miller.

Miller previously was a co-founder and managing partner at Nottingham Capital Management from September 2009 to December 2010.