Britt Harris to Leave Role as CEO and President of UTIMCO

Britt Harris will be leaving his post as the CEO and President at the University of Texas/Texas A&M University Investment Management Company (UTIMCO),  the largest public endowment in America.

His last day will be June 30, 2023, according to a press release from the firm. Under Harris’ leadership UTIMCO has been a top-performing investment team in both return generation and professional risk management. Upon Harris’s departure, UTIMCO’s Chief Investment Officer, Rich Hall, will be promoted to CEO and President.

“Britt is a unique and exceptional leader and one of the most talented investment leaders in the country – we have been fortunate to have him at the helm of UTIMCO these last six years,” said UTIMCO Board Chairman Rad Weaver. “We are grateful for Britt’s steadfast, impactful leadership, and his foresight in working with the Board on a succession plan that has fully prepared our talented team of investors to take command of UTIMCO’s important work upon his departure. We look forward to Rich Hall stepping up as UTIMCO’s forthcoming CEO.”

Harris mentored Hall into the chief investment officer position when he transitioned to president and CEO to focus on the larger concepts around the investment corporation. He has more than 30 years’ investment experience leading several of the largest organizations in America known for their success and innovation. He has also mentored a volume of CIOs.

Prior to UTIMCO, he was CIO for the Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS), CEO for Bridgewater Associates, CIO and President for Verizon Investment Management Corporation and a managing director for Asea Brown Boveri in Europe. 

Harris recently was recognized with a Hall of Fame award by this publication, owned by Markets Group, and he and his team have received a volume of achievement awards for their partnerships and performance. He has served on the President’s Working Council on Financial Markets, advised both the NY and Dallas Federal Reserves banks, co-led the San Jacinto Project – an American energy transfer initiative – and advised several countries on the creation of their investment organizations. Harris was also the first institutional investor to fund a fully minority-managed investment strategy while at Verizon in 1996. In addition to his leadership in the institutional investor community, Harris has made significant contributions to academia by teaching simultaneously at his alma mater, Texas A&M University, and the University of Texas at Austin. He has mentored more than 800 aspiring investors through his classes.

“UTIMCO has everything it needs to continue to be a world-class investment team for years to come,” Harris said. “Thank you to the Board of Directors for the opportunity to lead UTIMCO these last six years – I am grateful for all the amazing people that I have worked with and met along the way. Rich Hall and our leadership team are experienced and talented. I have no doubt they will continue to positively move UTIMCO forward.”

Hall joined UTIMCO as Chief Investment Officer in early 2018. He previously served as a managing director, head of private equity, and member of the Executive and Investment Committees at Harvard Management Company. Prior to serving Harvard, Hall worked with Harris as the head of private equity and a member of the Management Committee at the Teacher Retirement System of Texas (TRS). Prior to TRS, Hall had mergers and acquisitions related positions in industry and investment banking and served as an intelligence officer for six years in the U.S. Navy. He earned his master’s in business administration from Northwestern University and received his bachelor’s degree from Harvard.

UTIMCO Board Chairman Rad Weaver continued, “We are ready to initiate a seamless transition. Rich is a proven leader of people and of investment management and is eminently qualified to take the helm of UTIMCO. We look forward to the ongoing success he will accomplish on UTIMCO’s behalf. UTIMCO has an excellent leadership team and will no doubt continue to generate superior long-term investment returns so UT and A&M institutions can continue to deliver the very best education and health care to the people of Texas.”

UTIMCO holds $66 billion in assets under management with an endowment value of $52.9 billion, representing about $134,000 per student. 

Harris did not indicate he will fully retire, however.