CalSTRS Names New Corporate Governance Chief

Kirsty Jenkinson will join the $229 billion system in January.

Kirsty Jenkinson

The California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS), the second-largest US pension plan, has selected Kirsty Jenkinson as its director of corporate governance. She will assume the role in January.

She joins the $229 billion CalSTRS from Wespath Benefits and Investments, a non-profit organization that invests more than $23 billion in assets under management in connection with the United Methodist Church and its affiliates.

Jenkinson replaces Anne Sheehan, a longtime CalSTRS employee, who retired in March.

At CalSTRS, she will oversee an environmental, social, and governance (ESG) portfolio of more than $4 billion. She will also head CalSTRS’s engagement with companies its holds in its $122 billion global equity portfolio. CalSTRS is one of the most active ESG investors among public pension plans in the US.

“Kirsty is the ideal person to lead CalSTRS’ ESG investment policies into the future,” said CalSTRS Chief Investment Officer Christopher J. Ailman in a statement. “It is a high-performing team forged by her predecessor, Anne Sheehan, and I’m confident Kirsty is poised to lead our ESG efforts as we grow, adapt and change to meet the investment challenges ahead.”

Jenkinson was not immediately available for an interview. On Twitter she stated: “I fully support CalSTRS’ mission and vision as a long-term institutional investor, and I’m looking forward to collaborating with the talented investments team and the plethora of portfolio companies to shape the future of ESG investing and positively contribute to the financial futures of California educators.”

At Wespath, Jenkinson directed the organization’s ESG investment strategies as well as its corporate engagement and proxy voting activities.

Jenkinson’s resume includes a stint as director of the markets and enterprise program at the World Resources Institute, a Washington, D.C.-based global research organization. She also worked as a director of governance and sustainable investment at F&C Asset Management (now BMO Global Asset Management).


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