Industry Innovation Awards


This year, we are celebrating those who have survived, flourished, and been incredible leaders throughout the challenges of this pandemic environment. We are planning to gather in person to applaud their hard-won success on Dec. 7 at Chelsea Piers in New York.

Throughout this week, we will release the list of finalists who have been nominated by their industry peers for their fine work from 2020 to 2021. As we created our list, our mission was to search the industry for management firms that have truly and reliably enhanced the portfolios of their clients, and to find CIOs who have exceeded expectations under their mantles of responsibility.

All the CIOs who appear on our finalist list have not won an award in their categories at their firms (from us) in the past. And as we canvassed and read through award nominations, we learned just what an incredible two years it has been for many of you. Many have re-engineered business processes during the pandemic and turned portfolios around while being great mentors and thoughtful colleagues; others have led spin-offs, transformed funds to become in-house management firms, or headed incredible direct investment programs.

We also learned which managers are doing well for our CIOs, and which have remained dominant players in their niches, created powerful teams, and given CIOs precision-level details or smooth sailing through excess returns.

Our choices were highly influenced by our advisory board members—many were past CIO winners who lent their advice throughout the summer on top managers, top service providers, and the CIO peers they truly watch and learn from.

We’d like to extend a special thank you to our CIO advisers this year: Chris Ailman, California State Teachers Retirement System (CalSTRS); Mark Baumgartner, Carnegie Corporation of New York; Elizabeth Burton, Employees’ Retirement System State of Hawaii; Marcus Frampton, Alaska Permanent Fund Corporation; Jonathan Grabel, Los Angeles County Employees Retirement Association (LACERA); David Holmgren, Hartford Healthcare; Bob Hunkeler, International Paper; Leslie Lenzo, Advocate Aurora Health; Kim Lew, Columbia Investment Management Company; Mansco Perry, Minnesota State Board of Investment; Charmel Maynard, University of Miami; and Ash Williams, newly retired from Florida State Board Administration (FLSBA). (If you find a few of their names on the list, please note that not one of these CIOs nominated themselves.)

In all, we received more than 300 nominations.

And from that list, we chiseled out our finalists: all people and firms that are changing our industry for the better. Winners will be asked to prove their case and will be chosen by the CIO editorial team in conjunction with an advisory board of CIOs. The CIO of the Year Award and NextGen Award will also be announced during the award ceremony.

On Dec. 7, we will host both the Influential Investors Forum at Chelsea Piers and our glittery Innovation Awards celebration, where the finalists will gather to hear the winners announced for 2021.

Evening Agenda:
6:00 p.m. – Registration and Cocktails
7:00 p.m. – Dinner and Awards 
Following dinner, Winners Reception

*Important Event COVID-19 Information and Requirements*

In accordance with the mandate implemented by New York City, Pier Sixty will require that all guests, event staff and vendors show proof of vaccination  in order to enter the building.

Proof of vaccination must be presented in ONE of the following forms:

  • a) physical or digital CDC COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card along with Photo ID (NOT a photo of a vaccination card)
  • b) New York City COVID Safe Pass smartphone app, along with Photo ID
  • c) New York State Excelsior Pass along with Photo ID
  • d) an official immunization record from the jurisdiction, state or country where the vaccine was administered along with Photo ID


Contact Information

Sponsorship Information

Rob Reif (203) 258-6622

General Information

Carol Popkins (203) 461-0985