Denison Hires Alternative Assets Specialist for Endowment

(Bloomberg) -- Denison University named Kathleen Browne, a specialist in alternative assets and managing director of Wellesley College’s $1.8 billion fund, to run its endowment.

Browne, 50, is expected to begin as chief investment officer before the new school year, the liberal arts school near Columbus, Ohio, said Wednesday. Prior to joining Wellesley in 2009, Browne was director of alternative assets for Alcatel-Lucent Inc.’s corporate pension plan. The Denison fund has a current value of $790 million.

Denison Hires Alternative Assets Specialist for Endowment

Kathleen Browne

Source: Denison University

“She has the talent and skills to manage our endowment,” Bill Mulligan, a college trustee and managing partner of Primus Capital Partners, said in a statement. “This is vitally important to us, as these resources allow us to make Denison’s truly exceptional education available to students of all financial backgrounds.”

Strategic Planning

Browne’s responsibilities at Wellesley included strategic planning, sourcing and evaluating new investments; portfolio restructuring; and managing relationships with asset managers. 

Some of the largest college endowments are undergoing leadership changes. Schools including Washington University in St. Louis, Case Western Reserve, the University of California at Berkeley and the University of Texas are seeking new CIOs.

Browne was previously a private equity attorney at Goodwin Procter LLP in Boston, and worked as a systems engineer with the MITRE Corp., a nonprofit federally-funded research and development center in Massachusetts.

She replaces Adele Gorrilla, who left at the end of 2016 to run a family office.