Ash Williams to Chair Council of Institutional Investors Board

Eight new members elected as board officers, directors.

Art by Chris Buzelli

Art by Chris Buzelli

In addition to electing a new board of directors, the Council of Institutional Investors (CII) has named Florida State Board of Administration (SBA) Executive Director and CIO Ashbel “Ash” Williams as board chairman.

Williams, who has been with the $195.9 billion SBA since the late 2000s, was elected chair by the CII’s public fund members, as per  association bylaws.

Board officers were also elected by CII, including co-chairs Mary Francis, who is corporate secretary and chief governance officer for Chevron Corp.,  and John Keenan, corporate governance analyst for the AFSCME Employees Pension Plan. Scott Zdrazil, senior investment officer—corporate governance, for the Los Angeles County Employees Retirement Association, is the treasurer. Cambria Allen, corporate governance director, UAW Retiree Medical Benefits Trust, was named secretary.

Francis and Zdrazil join Jerry Albright, CIO, Teacher Retirement System of Texas; Ron Baker, interim executive director, Colorado Public Employees’ Retirement Association; Renaye Manley, deputy director, strategic initiatives department, Service Employees International Union (SEIU); Thomas McIntyre, international representative, International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers; Hope Mehlman, chief governance officer and assistant corporate secretary, Regions Financial; and Jennifer Peet, corporate governance director, Office of the Oregon Treasurer and Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund, as new members of the CII board.

Existing board members Mary Collins, trustee, District of Columbia Retirement Board; Michael Garland, assistant comptroller, corporate governance and responsible investment, New York City Pension Funds; Aeisha Mastagni, portfolio manager, California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS); and TerriJo Saarela, corporate governance director, State of Wisconsin Investment Board, have been elected as CII directors for the 2018-19 interim.

Last December, Williams was the honoree of CIO’s Industry Innovation Awards, where he received the Lifetime Achievement Award.

“If the team, culture, processes, and resources are right, the probability of investment outcomes that earn trust, enhance reputation, and build brand value is vastly enhanced,” he told CIO in December.

Williams could not be reached for comment.

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