by Don Howard, President and CEO, The James Irvine Foundation
Over the past year, Irvine’s staff has been hard at work implementing our new grantmaking focus. What is often invisible is the important, ongoing, and intensive work of our investment team to maximize returns on the Foundation’s endowment in order to fund our grantmaking initiatives.
That makes our Chief Investment Officer position a critical one, and it’s why we’re pleased to announce that we have hired Tim Recker for that role. (Our current CIO, John Jenks, announced his retirement plans earlier this year, and we have worked hard to find a worthy replacement.)
Tim is currently the managing director for private equity and real assets at the Regents of the University of California, where he leads a team of 10 people to manage a $9 billion portfolio. The management of Irvine’s endowment is critical to our mission, given that it alone provides for all of Irvine’s grants and expenses.
Thanks to John Jenks and the investment team, the Foundation’s endowment has performed very well, particularly our private investments. So, Tim's successful record leading private investments at the UC Regent's investment office will be vital in continuing that strong performance.
During the recruiting process Tim shared a unique passion for, and commitment to, Irvine’s mission. His work at Irvine will build on his nine years of work at the UC Regents, where he was drawn to the mission of expanding educational opportunity for Californians.
And given Tim’s excellent track record of building strong organizations and developing teams, we came to appreciate his ability to contribute to the success of the Foundation more broadly. His management experience in finance and operations, particularly at General Electric, will position him well to make important contributions to our senior management team.
Although John remains with the Foundation until January, we want to thank him and the entire investment team for their wisdom and hard work, which have enabled our programs and grantmaking to grow. When Tim joins in mid-November, he will be joining a team that has been an integral part of Irvine’s success.
We’d like to thank the board’s Investment Committee for their leadership during this process. This is just one example of the many ways our board contributes to our work. We look forward to Tim joining our team.