SAN FRANCISCO — April 14, 2016 — Former BlackRock ETF strategists Katharine Earhart, Maya Tussing to lead West Coast expansion
Alesco Advisors, an investment advisory firm headquartered in Rochester, N.Y., has expanded its presence to the West Coast with the opening of its new San Francisco office. The firm, which serves institutional and individual investors, has hired Katharine Earhart and Maya Lis Tussing as Principals and Co-Heads of the new location, 3624 Spear Tower at One Market Street.
Ms. Earhart and Ms. Tussing come to Alesco from BlackRock, Inc., one of the largest global investment management companies. Most recently at BlackRock, Earhart led the company’s iShares Connect Program within its iShares Institutional Sales Group, while Tussing served as head portfolio manager of U.S. Defined Benefit Index Asset Allocations. Both women have 20 years of financial services experience, including expertise in Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) managed solutions, an industry category which some value at $350 billion or more.
Earhart and her team were the first to recognize the increasing popularity of using ETFs as asset allocation vehicles by launching the program in 2008 with 25 managers and $6 billion in ETF assets. Today that team works with over 140 institutional clients. In 2012, Earhart’s team also launched the first and only annual conference dedicated to institutional clients building ETF managed portfolio solutions.
Tussing most recently oversaw strategic allocation for more than 300 funds invested in more than $200 billion in risk-managed assets across a broad spectrum of asset classes and investment vehicles, such as collective trust funds, ETFs and mutual funds. Prior to this, she co-led BlackRock’s Americas Corporate Risk Management team.
“Katharine’s and Maya’s extensive ETF and asset allocation experience is an excellent match for Alesco’s west coast expansion, as they bolster our company’s history of building diversified asset allocation portfolios using ETFs and index-based funds,” said Alesco Advisors President Jim Gould. “They also fit extremely well with our company’s overall culture.”
Tussing and Earhart have also developed a specific expertise in serving female corporate leaders, entrepreneurs and innovators. Their exclusive Directional Ambition™ program provides women, in particular, with a unique combination of financial, commercial and community leadership to help them achieve their goals.
“We are thrilled to have Maya and Katharine join our team and lead Alesco’s expansion,” said Frederick “Fritz” Minges, executive vice president and head of client service and marketing. “Their focus on women investors is equally important, as this is an integral part of our business expansion strategy.”
Less than 15 percent of U.S. financial advisors are women, and even fewer are in executive and C-suite positions in the financial industry. However, Alesco Advisors now has three females in top positions within the firm and is committed to continued growth in this area. The new San Francisco office will further distinguish Alesco in this important and growing market.
“Katharine’s knowledge of the ETF strategist landscape and eco-system will be an added bonus alongside Maya’s knowledge of how institutional investors are increasingly adopting ETF portfolios for both their low cost and liquidity advantages,” added Chief Investment Officer Todd Green.
The San Francisco duo has worked together for many years, and Katharine has known the Alesco team for several, including a custom consulting engagement she worked on with Alesco in 2013.
“We’ve worked with scores of investment firms from all over the nation and considered multiple options for this next chapter,” said Earhart. “However, Maya and I felt that Alesco was the best fit, due to its unique investing strategies, exemplary client service, and incredible staff. There is a substantial opportunity to grow this organization.”
“Alesco has an outstanding reputation, and we are thrilled to be able to join the company at such a pivotal time in its history,” added Tussing. “The ‘Alesco Promise’ of service, integrity and value resonated greatly with us, and we look forward to helping Alesco extend those values from Upstate New York all the way to the Bay Area.”
About Alesco Advisors LLC
Alesco Advisors LLC, an Upstate New York-based investment advisor, provides comprehensive investment solutions for endowments, foundations, retirement plans and high-net-worth individuals and families. Founded in 2000, Alesco advises on $2.9 billion of client assets. The firm’s philosophy focuses on asset allocation, broad diversification and expense control, implemented through the use of index centric investment vehicles such as mutual funds and exchange-traded funds. Alesco offers its clients a conflict-free approach that works in their best interest. To learn more, visit www.alescoadvisors.com.