Brown Enhances Leadership Structure in Investment Office
PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — In a move that will advance the University’s ability to optimally manage its existing financial investments and cultivate new investment opportunities, Brown University has appointed Joseph Dowling III and Jane Dietze to new leadership roles in its Investment Office.
Effective July 1, Dowling — Brown’s current chief investment officer — took on the newly created role of chief executive officer of the Investment Office. Dietze, currently managing director, became Brown’s vice president and chief investment officer.
Both will work directly with the Investment Committee of the Corporation of Brown University to implement the investment strategy for the University’s $3.7 billion endowment.
University Trustee Robert Goodman, who chairs the Investment Committee, said that the new appointments reflect an approach at many leading investment offices in which CEO and CIO positions complement each other in developing new investment opportunities and managing existing investments, respectively.
“The complexity and scope of the requirements of the role of chief investment officer for Brown have continued to grow,” Goodman said. “We recognized an opportunity to separate the core executive and investment functions into two complementary roles, and this will truly optimize the incredible talent in the Investment Office.”
In his new role as chief executive officer, Dowling will lead the development of new partnerships for the Investment Office, cultivate investment opportunities for Brown and support the University more broadly on key strategic projects. Dietze will manage the Investment Office’s operations and lead the capital allocation and investment process for Brown with the goal of continuing to achieve superior, risk-adjusted returns over time.
Dowling has been chief investment officer at Brown since June 2013. Dietze joined the Investment Office as managing director later in the same year.
“We are fortunate at Brown to have in place an outstanding team in our Investment Office, a supportive and insightful Investment Committee, active, engaged alumni, and access to an excellent group of investment managers and long-term strategic partners,” Dietze said. “I look forward to our collective efforts to grow the endowment and ensure its permanence for future generations of Brown students and faculty.”
Since then, Brown’s endowment has grown to $3.7 billion (from a market value of $2.6 billion in 2012), produced more than $1.3 billion in investment returns and contributed more than $800 million to support Brown’s operating budget. Through the end of Fiscal Year 2017, the endowment’s performance stood in the top quartile of endowments and foundations for three-, five- and 10-year trailing periods, as measured by Cambridge Associates. The Brown endowment’s Sharpe ratio — a measure of risk-adjusted return — stands in the top decile over the last five years, also according to Cambridge Associates data.
In addition to the appointments of Dowling and Dietze, Joshua Kennedy will become the Investment Office’s managing director. A 1997 graduate of Brown, Kennedy joined the office as investment director in 2016.
The Brown endowment’s purpose is to provide financial stability and support in perpetuity to the University’s educational mission and to contribute to the academic endeavors of both current and future students. The Investment Office manages the endowment with a dual mandate to protect and prudently grow its value over the long term. Guided by this mandate, the endowment is invested in a diverse set of asset classes and conservatively positioned to perform under multiple future macroeconomic scenarios.
Joseph Dowling III, Chief Executive Officer
Prior to his appointment as chief executive officer, Joseph Dowling III served as chief investment officer at Brown University since June 2013, a role in which he managed the University’s $3.7 billion endowment and its 21-member investment office. Before joining Brown, he was the founder and chief executive officer of Narragansett Asset Management, where he managed funds for institutions, pension funds and endowments. An accomplished investor with experience in public and private equity, real estate, commodities and currencies, Dowling has also worked for First Boston, Tudor Investments and Oracle Partners, and he currently serves on the advisory board for Harbor Funds and on the board of directors for Integrated Electrical Services. He has a bachelor’s degree and a master’s in business administration from Harvard University. Born and raised in Providence, Dowling was introduced to the Brown community early in life. His father, Joseph Dowling Jr., graduated from Brown in 1947, taught medicine at the University and served as a Corporation trustee.
Jane Dietze, Vice President and Chief Investment Officer
Brown’s new vice president and chief investment officer, Jane Dietze joined the University in December 2013 as managing director of the Investment Office. Before coming to Brown, Dietze served as the director of private equity at Bowdoin College. She joined Bowdoin from Fortress Investment Group, a global investment manager with $64 billion under management, where she was a managing director in the credit funds group. Prior to her work at Fortress, Dietze was a general partner at Columbia Capital Corporation, a private equity fund focused on information technology and communications. Dietze also worked throughout Russia and Central Europe as an investment officer at the private investment arm of the World Bank and as an analyst in the mergers and acquisitions department of Goldman Sachs. Dietze earned a bachelor’s degree in politics from Princeton University and a master’s degree in international economics and Russian studies from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.
Joshua Kennedy, Managing Director
Managing Director Joshua Kennedy joined the Investment Office as investment director in 2016, a role in which he contributed to the asset allocation, manager selection and investment strategy of Brown’s endowment with a particular focus on real assets and the direct investment portfolio. Before joining Brown, Kennedy was managing partner of Sonian Capital Management in Boston, where he was responsible for making the firm’s overall investment decisions, including stock selection and portfolio risk governance. Prior to Sonian, Kennedy served in a series of investment and leadership roles with Liberty Square Asset Management, an institutional investment manager in Boston. He began his investment career as an equity analyst at American Century Investments. Kennedy graduated with an A.B. in religious studies from Brown in 1997 and earned a master’s degree in business administration with concentrations in accounting and finance from New York University. His writing has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Business Insider, Barron’s Asia and more.