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RI People & Appointments, November 7: PRI names new Chief Operating Officer

The latest ESG movers and shakers

Peter de Graaf, the ex-FTSE executive who helped with a review of governance at the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI), has joined the PRI as its new Chief Operating Officer. De Graaf joins the PRI from consulting firm Carnstone Partners, where he has led much of its work on responsible investment. De Graaf is a former Managing Director (EMEA) with FTSE Group, where he was heavily involved with FTSE4Good. He has also served on the board of environmental research firm Trucost. De Graaf, who takes up his new role on December 1, reporting to Managing Director Fiona Reynolds, will have overall operational responsibility for key projects and the PRI’s strategic plan. He will have direct responsibility for the Communication & Events team.

Fund management veteran Richard Horlick will succeed James Dawnay as chairman of UK-based charity and local authority fund manager CCLA Investment Management. Dawnay is retiring after 12 years in the post and former Schroders Investment Management CEO Horlick said: “CCLA is a very worthwhile body which contributes to the greater good through its work for the Charities, local authorities and the Church.”

Voya Investment Management, the asset management business of New York-listed Voya Financial has named Drew Schechtman as vice president, Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) Integration leader, a new role. Based in New York, he reports to Voya Investment Management’s Investment Committee. Prior to joining Voya, he was vice president and head of Sustainability and Environmental Investing at BNY Mellon.

NN Investment Partners (formerly ING Investment Management), the asset manager of NN Group, the listed Dutch group, has appointed Willem Schramade as a Senior Portfolio Manager for Impact Investing. He will manage the Impact Investing strategy together with Huub van der Riet, Lead Portfolio Manager, under the supervision of Hendrik-Jan Boer, Head of NN IP’s Sustainable Equity group. Schramade joins from Robeco. The Impact Investing strategy is initially available in the Dutch market through the NN Global Sustainable Opportunities Fund. A Luxemburg fund vehicle for the international market is expected to follow at the beginning of next year.

The Investment & Pensions Europe (IPE) Pensions Scholarship Fund has made two awards for research into retirement provision. The first is a €5,000 grant to Elizabeth Harnett, a PhD candidate at Oxford University to support her work on increasing the understanding of the information and communication channels pension funds find useful and important in translating climate change science into actionable knowledge. Harnett says it is not clear that simply providing more information on climate change will impact pension fund managers’ decisions and behaviour.
The second award is to Ellen Dingemans for €2,000 to assist post-doctoral research at the Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDIKNAW) and the University Medical Center Groningen (UMCGRUG). Dingemans is investigating the key drivers of post retirement employment in both countries.
The fund’s board comprises: Chris Verhaegen, former chair of the Occupational Pensions Stakeholder Group at EIOPA; Peter Melchior, former Executive Director/Actuary of PKA Pension Fund in Denmark and Peter Borgdorff, Executive Director, Pensioenfonds Zorg en Welzijn in the Netherlands. It is chaired by Fennell Betson, Founding Editor of Investment & Pensions Europe magazine.

Former Insight Investment Management CEO Douglas Ferrans and ex- Knight Vinke Vice Chairman David Trenchard have been named as ‘intended directors’ for the People’s Trust, former Investment Association CEO Daniel Godfrey’s new venture. Ferrans, a former chair of the Investment Management Association (now the Investment Association), the body which Godfrey left last year, is a Fellow of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries. Trenchard is a consultant on shareholder engagement and activist investment with a variety of advisory and non- executive roles and a Member of Council at the Institute of Directors.

The UK’s Green Investment Bank has named its ‘special share’ holders, who will be tasked with maintaining the green focus of the bank under privatisation. Peter Young, the former chair of Aldersgate Group, Robin Teverson, Chair of the House of Lords’ EU select committee on energy and environment, Trevor Hutchings, Director of Advocacy for WWF, and James Curran, environmental scientist and former CEO of the Scottish Environment Protection Agency have been selected. The four will be trustees of an independent charity called Green Purposes Company, and will hold a ‘golden share’ in the GIB, giving them special voting powers, despite the share having no material value.William McCalpin has joined Athena Capital Advisors, the Massachusetts-based Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) as Managing Partner, Impact Investments. McCalpin was most recently CEO at Imprint Capital Advisors – the impact investing firm bought by Goldman Sachs Asset Management in September 2015. He is currently a member of the board of the F.B. Heron Foundation and is independent Chairman of the mutual funds offered by Janus Capital Group and The Investment Fund for Foundations. Announcement

Helene Winch, the former Director of Policy and Research at the PRI, has left her position at Low Carbon a company spokesperson has confirmed, adding: “We are grateful for Helene’s contributions and wish her well for the future.” Winch, formerly Head of Policy at BT Pension Scheme Management, joined Low Carbon, a UK-based investment focused on solar photovoltaic (PV), concentrated solar power, wind and anaerobic digestion technology, in 2015. Low Carbon is headed by Roy Bedlow, a founder member of the Carbon War Room NGO and the former European Marketing Director of Apple.

Nick Robins, Co-Director of the UNEP Inquiry into the Design of a Sustainable Financial System, is stepping down from WHEB Asset Management’s independent Investment Advisory Committee having come to the end of his term. He has been replaced on the committee by Mike Clark, the former Director of Responsible Investment at Russell investments who founded Ario Advisory earlier this year.

Neil Gross has stepped down as Executive Director of FAIR Canada, the Foundation for Advancement of Investor Rights. Ermanno Pascutto, the founder and original executive director, has been appointed as Chair, and Ellen Roseman has been appointed Vice Chair. Pascutto thanked Gross, a lawyer specializing in investment malpractice litigation and securities law, for his contributions and said the board would be commencing the search for a new executive director shortly.

James McGinnis has been hired by Ireland-based wind and solar developer Mainstream to be CEO of its new financing and investment arm, Mainstream Renewable Capital which it has set up to raise capital for its existing project pipeline and future growth opportunities. McGinnis, a former board member at the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions, has had stints with Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, AIG, Harbinger Capital Partners and Halcyon Asset Management.

Tal Ullmann is now on a sabbatical from Sustainalytics. He managed the ESG research house’s institutional relations team in Amsterdam and London and the company said “his great work and contribution to the company” would be missed. Eimear Toomey has joined to manage the Institutional Relations team in London, whilst Paris-based Antonio Celeste is now responsible for the IR team in continental Europe (including Amsterdam). Both report to ‎Executive Vice President of Institutional Relations Diederik Timmer.

Peter Elwin has joined the UK’s largest pension fund, the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) in the new role of head of research. IPE.com reported that the £49.8bn (€63.4bn) USS aims to improve its in-house equity investment process amid a move to a “high-conviction” portfolio and that the position spans the equities and responsible investment teams. Elwin joins from JP Morgan Cazenove.

Michael Cheng has joined MSCI ESG Research as a Vice President of corporate governance research based in Hong Kong. He was formerly with the Asian Corporate Governance Association as its first Research Director for China and Hong Kong. Prior to ACGA, he was responsible for listing policy focusing on ESG initiatives in the Listing Division of Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing (HKEx) and Head of Legal at China International Capital Corporation.

UN Environment (formerly United Nations Environment Programme) is looking for a Programme Manager for its Principles for Sustsinable Insurance Initiative (PSI) Link on a one-year renewable contract basis. The succesful candidate will handle collaborative projects, implementation support services, outreach, events and communications. The job involves work with other Secretariat members of UN Environment’s Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) as well as the UN Environment’s Inquiry into the Design of a Sustainable Financial System, whose work is focused on financial policy and regulation, as well as other parts of UN Environment and the broader UN system. The duty station is Geneva, Switzerland. The deadline for applications is 15 November 2016 under UN job opening number: 68268 Link to application