Class of 2017 Forty Under Forty

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Ron Tenhagen Investment Manager, JM Family Enterprises, Inc.
(Deerfield Beach, FL) 38
Ron Tenhagen
(Art by Marcellus Hall)

Ron was crucial to the design of the overall strategy diversification and structuring of the liquidity guidelines to ensure JM Family met their long-term investment goals, while meeting the company’s capital requirements. He made key contributions upgrading internal processes, specifically investment reporting, resulting in increased transparency and leverage in fee negotiations.

How have you been a change agent at your organization? What have you done that you’re particularly proud of?

Since coming onboard at JM Family, I have been part of a team that created a corporate investment portfolio that is nearly 100% alternatives. We’ve made investments into new strategies and assets with this portfolio, including direct hedge funds, private equity, venture capital, real estate, and co-investments. I enjoy looking outside of the box for new ideas and pushing to make investments in unique opportunities.

What is the asset class or investment that keeps you up at night, and why?

We employ a healthy amount of diversification so there’s not really one thing that stands out. I am more worried about how people will react when volatility comes back and there is a big pullback.

What methodologies have you adopted within your institution?

I helped our team continue to refine the manager selection and portfolio construction processes with a focus on asset allocation and diversification.

Where do you fall in the passive vs. active debate?

Both have pros and cons. I think you have to pick your spot and really understand what you are actually investing in with active or passive strategies.

What are the changes you’d like to see the institutional investing community make in 10 years?

I’d like to see better alignment of interest between asset owners and managers regarding fees and skin in the game.

Who is a manager you don’t currently work with whose brain you’d like to pick?

David Swensen.

Ideally, where would that meeting take place?

Ideally, we’d be on a fishing charter in the Keys. In reality, I’d travel to him, so I guess it would be in New Haven, CT.

What is the software investment tool that helps you most?

I use Excel more than anything else.

What would improve the relationship between you and managers?

More frequent communications and transparency.

Why did you choose your current path?

I enjoy the mental challenge of investments. There is no single “right” answer and the game is constantly evolving. I came to JM Family because I wanted a position where I felt my interests were aligned with the investment decisions I would be influencing. I also value the flexibility to look at any investment opportunity. At JM Family, my group is responsible for three pools of capital with very different mandates, including managing the retirement plans, so I feel interests are well aligned.