Russell Investments has appointed Michelle Seitz as chief executive officer and a director on the firm’s board. She will become chairman of the board effective 1 January 2018, and will be based in the firm’s headquarters in Seattle.
Seitz (pictured), succeeds Len Brennan who will serve as chairman of Russell Investments through the end of 2017, after which time he will become a strategic advisor to the firm.
“For more than three decades, Russell Investments has been at the forefront of asset management capabilities that are critical for success in today’s investing environment – from cutting-edge asset allocation and unparalleled money manager insights, to some of the earliest forays into factor exposures and a competitively recognised implementation capability,” says Todd R Crockett, managing director, TA Associates, which, along with Reverence Capital Partners, acquired Russell Investments in 2016. “We are excited to welcome Michelle as Russell Investments’ new CEO, and believe that her forward-looking leadership will help propel the firm into a new phase of evolution and growth that will benefit clients and associates alike.”
Milton R Berlinski, managing partner, Reverence Capital Partners, adds: “We thank Len for his numerous contributions to Russell Investments over the course of more than two decades serving the firm’s clients. Under Len’s leadership for the past six years, the firm has built on its legacy of asset management innovation to offer industry-leading multi-asset solutions and recognised OCIO capabilities that position Russell Investments for the future and address the exacting demands of investors globally.”
Seitz joins Russell Investments following 16 years leading William Blair Investment Management (WBIM) and serving on the seven-person executive committee of William Blair, which has more than 1,400 employees and offices in 10 cities across four continents. During her leadership tenure, Seitz drove the transformation and five-fold growth of WBIM from a regional high net worth franchise to the internationally recognised, global asset management business that it is today. Of note, she led the exponential growth of WBIM’s institutional business – from USD2.3 billion in AUM to USD65 billion in AUM – while also cultivating a culture of client-centric excellence, integrity and employee engagement that led to WBIM being a four-time recipient of the ‘Best Places to Work in Money Management’ recognition by Pensions & Investments.
Prior to assuming leadership of William Blair Investment Management in 2001, Seitz led the firm’s private wealth management businesses. Her previous experience also includes senior portfolio management roles with WBIM, Concord Investment Company, and Nationsbank.