Jerome Tagger, the New York-based chief operating officer (COO) of the United Nations’ backed Principles for Responsible Investment (UNPRI) is to shortly leave the organisation, www.responsible-investor.com can reveal. Tagger was instrumental in building up the UNPRI and during his tenure as COO it grew from 56 signatories to nearly 900. He was the second person to join the PRI staff after James Gifford, its executive director. The UNPRI now has about 30 staff members globally as it moves from start-up to fully-fledged operation. It is understood that Tagger has not yet taken another position but that after four years in the job has decided to seek new challenges elsewhere. Confirming Tagger’s departure, James Gifford, the PRI’s executive director, said: “Jerome was absolutely instrumental in driving the PRI forward since the very early days and can take a great deal of credit for theinitiative’s success today. The PRI wouldn’t be where it is today without his incredible work over the years. He will be sadly missed.” Besides managing operations and finances, Tagger instituted the PRI Private Equity Work Stream and was responsible for building the PRI in North America. He will be replaced in the COO role in March by Mark Blair, who joined as director of operations and finance in London. Blair was former chief finance officer of General Atlantic, the business arm of the UK-based Atlantic Philanthropies, and began his career as an investment analyst in the City of London. Other recent PRI hires include Jamie Dettmer, a former journalist and head of communications at the Cato Institute, who has joined as director of communications. The PRI will also hire a new director of strategic development in the coming months to oversee signatory networks and recruitment.