Smith College to Move $2 Billion Endowment In-House, Add CIO

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Smith College, one of the richest U.S. liberal arts schools, is splitting with its longtime outside investment firm to manage its more than $2 billion endowment.

The move from Investure will enable the women’s college to have “greater direct control over its largest financial asset,” President Kathleen McCartney and Alison Overseth, chair of the board of trustees, said in a statement Thursday.

The Northampton, Massachusetts-based college decided to make the change after more than a year of deliberation. It will soon start the search for its first chief investment officer, a model used by schools with comparable assets.

Smith, founded in 1871, has outsourced endowment management to Investure since 2004. Alice Handy, who oversaw the University of Virginia’s endowment for three decades before starting Investure, retired in 2018.

The endowment returned 1.8% in the fiscal year ended June 30 and an annualized 8.1% over 10 years.

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