Women Investment Professionals: Empowering Aspiring Women

The Changing Look of Institutional Investors' Portfolios

2018 Members Only - Part One

Is the Yale Model Dead?

April 05, 2018

Session I focuses on endowments and foundations which historically have had a significant bias towards alternatives, and active management generally.  Many E&Fs have been adopters of the Yale Model and early allocators to illiquid asset classes like private equity and hedge funds. But does E&Fs’ increased interest in sustainable investing suggest favoring passive and multi-factor vehicles?  Does Harvard’s move to external management rather than using an internal investment staff suggest further changes in the Yale model?


Heather Myers, Partner, Non–Profit Practice Leader, Aon

Heather Myers is the Partner, Non-Profit Solutions Leader at Aon. In her role, she is responsible for ensuring the firm’s non-profit clients and prospects remain informed of key issues impacting the market and have access to innovative solutions to help meet their objectives. Heather is also a member of Aon U.S. Investment Committee.

Prior to joining Aon, Heather started in the financial industry in 1989 working in international consulting and fixed income manager research at Russell Investments. Her experience at Russell spans from Head of Multi–Currency Fixed Income Research to Senior Practice Analyst for fixed income and currency to Senior Consultant. During this time, she also was a member of Russell’s external hedge fund of fund research practice for advisory clients. In 2008, she assumed the role of Director of Endowment and Foundation Strategy to focus solely on the non–profit sector. Since 2011, as Managing Director, she helped lead the outsourced solutions practiced focused on non-profit organizations.

Heather serves on Whitman College’s Investment Committee as well as a non-profit organization’s investment committee. Heather has a B.A. in Political Science & a minor in Japanese Studies from Whitman College. Heather maintains a FINRA Registered Principal Series 24 License, as well as Series 7 and 63 Licenses.


Erin Archer, Treasurer, DePaul University

Erin is the Treasurer of DePaul University, the largest Catholic university in the United States with nearly 23,000 students.  She leads the treasury operations and liquidity management functions of the university, administers its endowment and other investment holdings, oversees the institution’s capital finance strategy and manages its debt portfolio. Erin also manages the commercial real estate of the institution and is responsible for the acquisition, disposition and leasing of its fixed assets. 

In her prior career, Erin was an equity research analyst at various banks including Goldman Sachs and HSBC.  She covered the US financial sector through 2008 from the Midwest, emerging EMEA initial public offerings from London, and Sub-Saharan African food and beverage companies from Johannesburg.

Erin holds an MBA in finance and economics and a BA in biological sciences, both from the University of Chicago.  She is a CFA Charterholder.


Harisha Koneru Haigh, CFA, Managing Director, Private Investments and Real Assets, Northwestern University

Ms. Haigh manages the Private Investments and Real Assets portfolios for Northwestern University’s $11 billion endowment. Ms. Haigh is responsible for all aspects of these portfolios including venture capital, buyouts, real estate, natural resources and commodities investments.

Prior to joining Northwestern University in 2005, Ms. Haigh was a Principal at PPM America Capital Partners, LLC, the U.S. private equity manager for Prudential plc and Jackson National Life Insurance Company. She also worked in London for Silverfleet, a PPM affiliate, focusing on European middle market buyout transactions. She began her career in the investment banking department of ABN AMRO, concentrating on mergers and acquisitions of small and middle market companies.

Ms. Haigh received a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Washington University in St. Louis and an MBA from Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management Ms. Haigh is a CFA charterholder.

More About Harisha Koneru Haigh, CFA, Managing Director, Private Investments and Real Assets, Northwestern University


Leslie K. Lenzo, CFA, Vice President, Treasury & Chief Investment Officer, Advocate Health Care

Leslie K. Lenzo, CFA is Vice President, Treasury & Chief Investment Officer at Advocate Health Care in Downers Grove, IL.  In her role at Advocate, Ms. Lenzo oversees the investment of $7 billion in corporate and pension assets.  She also oversees the investment options available in Advocate's $3 billion defined contribution plans.  Prior to Advocate Ms. Lenzo spent seven years in the investment office at Northwestern Memorial Healthcare in Chicago.  Ms. Lenzo started her career with the investment program at Partners Health Care in Boston and she then took a brief detour to the sell side, spending two years in equity research covering Healthcare Services at SG Cowen.  Ms. Lenzo holds a BA in Economics and Government from Georgetown University and a MBA in Finance from Boston University.  She is also a CFA charter holder.  Ms. Lenzo resides in Illinois with her husband, four young sons, and their Boston Terrier.


Joanna Rupp, CFA Assistant Vice President, Managing Director Private Equity University of Chicago

Joanna is the managing director of the $1.1 billion private equity portfolio for the University's endowment. She develops the investment strategy for the Venture Capital, Growth Capital and Corporate Buyout allocation, including investments in Developed and Emerging markets.  Together with her team, she oversees manager screening and selection. Joanna joined the University 2001 as the manager of public equities. In 2004, she was appointed as the Chief Operating Officer and oversaw the department through significant growth and change. In addition, she has served as the Managing Director, Pensions since 2009 and was responsible for the comprehensive revisions to the defined benefit plan’s investment policy, manager selection and allocations.

From 1997 to 2000, she was a vice president with Security Capital Markets Group where she was responsible for structuring real estate transactions for institutional investors and providing investment banking services to affiliated companies. Earlier in her career, Joanna was with the municipal finance group at Goldman, Sachs in New York and Chicago. Prior to that, she was an asset/liability manager for U.S. Central Credit Union responsible for fixed income portfolio management, fixed income derivatives strategy and new product development.

Joanna holds an MBA, cum laude, in finance from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and a BS in business administration from the University of Kansas. She is a CFA Charterholder, Kauffman Fellow, Class 21, and a member of the Board of Trustees at The University of Kansas.