Christie Briscoe Zarkovich (pictured), an experienced institutional investor with ESG, impact and mission-related investing expertise, has been named Head of Mission-Related Investing (MRI) Research at Cambridge Associates.
She is based in the firm’s Arlington, Virginia office and reports to Noel O’Neill, Global Head of Investment Research.
Zarkovich joined Cambridge Associates in 2016 as a Managing Director, and has been focused on constructing investment portfolios with an impact and mission-related dimension for endowments, foundations and private clients.
The Head of MRI Research is a newly created role and reflects the increasing importance of impact investing among institutional investors. In the last five years client assets placed in ESG investments – those that integrate environmental, social and governance factors – have doubled to approximately USD9.5 billion from USD4 billion in 2012.
“ESG and impact investing are key components of many of our clients’ investment programs today, and the number of ESG investing opportunities has increased dramatically,” says O’Neill. “We are delighted that Christie is leading the next generation of our MRI research as the opportunity landscape continues to expand. Appointing someone as experienced in the field as Christie to lead ESG and impact research is a natural step for Cambridge Associates as the robustness of our MRI efforts and their importance to our clients continues to increase and expand.”
“It’s an extraordinary time in ESG and impact investing,” says Zarkovich. “Institutional investors are becoming increasingly interested and proactive in aligning their investment portfolios with the institution’s long-term goals and mission. As with any other asset class, extensive manager due diligence and access to talent and resources to uncover the best investment ideas is critical to delivering performance, but the range of opportunities where strong performance and impact are inextricably linked continues to grow.”
Cambridge Associates formally established its MRI practice in 2008 to stay ahead of the increasing demand from clients to invest in strategies that align with their overall missions and ESG priorities. The firm has 35 ESG- and MRI-focused investment professionals around the world serving firm’s core client segments, which include endowments, foundations, private clients and pensions. On average, Cambridge Associates conducts approximately 300 due diligence meetings a year with ESG- and MRI-related investment managers, with a proprietary database that includes over 1,000 MRI strategies that have been vetted for client portfolios over the last decade. Areas within MRI research include climate change and impact themes such as education, community development, health and wellness, social justice, and more.
Before joining Cambridge Associates, Zarkovich served as a Managing Director at Perella Weinberg Partners in Denver, where she was a member of the Investment Committee and helped manage USD6 billion in foundation and endowment assets on a discretionary basis. She had previously been a senior member of the investment team at The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and started her career at the New York Mercantile Exchange. She holds a Bachelor’s in Economics from The Colorado School of Mines and an MBA and MS Finance from the University of Denver. She is a CFA charterholder.