National Association of State Retirement Administrators

Position Information

Chief Investment Officer
The Public Employee Retirement System of Idaho (“PERSI” or “the System”) is the administrator of seven fiduciary funds. This includes three defined benefit retirement plans, the Public Employee Retirement Fund Base Plan (PERSI Base Plan) the Firefighters’ Retirement Fund (FRF) and the Judges’ Retirement Plan (JRF); two defined contribution plans, the Public Employee Retirement Fund Choice Plan 401(k) and 414(k) (PERSI Choice Plans); and two Sick Leave Insurance Reserve Trust Funds – one for state employers and one for school district employers. PERSI assets under management total approximately $23 billion.
The Retirement Board (“Board”) consists of five members, each appointed by the Governor to fulfill a five-year term. The Board meets monthly to conduct System business, usually on the third Tuesday of each month at PERSI’s headquarters office in downtown Boise. Due to the five-year terms, the Board has not had significant turnover. This stability has allowed the Board to operate in a collegial manner and consensus decision-making approach.
The majority of the System’s 69 staff members work in the headquarters office located in Boise. There are two staff members in the Coeur d’Alene office, and two in the Pocatello office. The System staff oversees the investment of the trust corpus and new contributions with professional investment managers and funding agents. The Board maintains fiduciary responsibility for investment policy, asset allocation, and the selection of individual investment managers. Under the leadership of the Executive Director, the overall culture is described as collaborative and team oriented.
The Investment Program
The next Chief Investment Officer will replace a long-serving investment leader who has announced his retirement effective September 2022.  The Chief Investment Officer will be assisted by a Deputy Chief Investment Officer. This two-person team will manage the investment program. These two individuals will operate as a team and will be involved in all aspects in managing the various portfolios. They will collaborate with and present to the Board, which also serves as the Investment Committee.
As one of the best-funded and better-performing defined benefit retirement plans in the world, PERSI has benefited from a “simple, transparent, and focused” investment philosophy for the past 30 years.  The asset allocation is 55/15/30.  The successful candidate will be a skilled operator who can help the Board manage risks associated with the current approach, but also evaluate opportunities as part of ongoing due diligence.
The Trustees may delegate certain responsibilities to the CIO differently for each of the Funds under its control. The following is an overview of the CIO’s responsibilities: 
  1. Management of Investment Portfolios
    1. Present to the Board and implement the investment philosophy and policy for each Fund under management including specific goals and objectives.  
    2. Coordinate with the Executive Director to ensure that the portfolios are implemented effectively and efficiently.
    3. Inform the Board of challenges that may impact the operations of the investment program.
    4. Oversee Deputy Chief Investment Officer, investment staff advisors, and coordinate with the Board’s investment consultant. 
  2. Communication
    1. Apprise the Board in a timely fashion of significant matters relating to the investment program.
    2. Serve as the central resource to the Board and others, as appropriate, for information related to PERSI’s investment program.  
  3. Policy Matters
    1. Make recommendations to the Board on policy matters pertaining to or having a potential impact on the investment program.
    2. Develop and maintain the Board’s investment policy statement documentation for each Fund.  
  4. Leadership
    1. Lead by example: setting an ethical, professional and high-performance organizational culture for PERSI.
    2. Stay abreast of best practices in institutional investments and emerging trends and policy implications. 
  5. Investment Staff Development
    1. Manage a stable and competent investment staff consistent with the needs of the PERSI investment program.
    2. Promote and support on-going education consistent with PERSI’s stated investment philosophy. 
  6. Defined Benefit & Sick Leave Plan Duties
    1. Supervise, monitor, and evaluate the performance of the investment managers and other investment agents hired by the Board to assure compliance with investment policy and individual guidelines.
    2. Recommend to the Board adjustments to the investment policy, including reviewing and modifying the asset allocation as conditions warrant.
    3. Research current market conditions, evaluate new products, and seek out new approaches to improve portfolio return, reduce risk, and reduce costs and fees.
    4. Work with consultants, custodians, investment managers, and other agents in the performance of their assigned duties.
    5. Assist the Board with education and other efforts to promote good decision making.
    6. Hire and manage investment staff/personnel and outside staff investment advisors.
    7. Coordinate with Executive Director and other staff to implement investment actions/decisions and reporting needs.
    8. Allocate new net contributions to or withdraw net distributions from the System among investment managers in accordance with the long-term and strategic ranges established in the investment policy statement. Report to the Board regularly on the allocation of new net contributions or the withdrawal of net distributions.
    9. Shift assets among managers (including between passive and active managers) as long as the asset allocation is maintained within the stated ranges. 
  7. PERSI Choice 401(k) Plan Duties
    1. Provide opinions and advice on the selection, retention, ongoing monitoring of managers/product for each option, including use and number of internal and external products.
    2. Provide opinions and advice on the selection of investment related service providers such as Investment Consultants, Record Keeper, Custodian, Attorneys and Tax Advisors; and
    3. Provide opinions and advice on the investment fees benchmarking for the investment options.
Position: Chief Investment Officer
Organization: Public Employee Retirement System of Idaho (PERSI)
Location: Boise,  ID 
United States
Posting Start Date: 6/3/2022
Date Posted: 6/3/2022
     Minimum Qualifications
  • 10+ years of experience in the investment of trust assets
  Preferred Qualifications
  • Institutional investment management experience
  • Experience in sourcing and monitoring external managers
  • CFA or MBA preferred
Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
  • Comprehensive knowledge of investments and modern portfolio theory
  • Considerable knowledge of purposes, principles, and theories of asset management
  • Ability to prepare and present investment material to Board
  • Strong interpersonal skills with the ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with external advisors as well as PERSI staff at all levels
  • Ability to position the investment team as part of the overall PERSI organization
  • Ability to act professionally and appropriately with tact and discretion
  • Ability to exercise initiative and independent judgment
  • Ability to quickly acquire and apply a detailed understanding of the PERSI portfolio
  • Collaborative and able to work effectively with multiple constituencies, internal (Executive Director and Board) and external (investment consultants, investment managers, etc.) “Plays well with others”
  • Positive, results-oriented style, evidenced by listening, motivating, delegating, influencing, and monitoring the work being done
  • Ability to communicate effectively to other investment organizations in Idaho; contribute to a sense of community within the State
  • Great intellectual curiosity and the desire to adhere to best practices
  • Establishes immediate credibility among his/her staff; a professional who engenders respect
  • Bright mind, strategic and detailed, whose presence will advance the intellectual capital of the organization
Status: This listing expires on: 8/2/2022
Apply Apply for this Position
Send to a Friend  Send to Friend
   Print Job
Return to Job Search  Return to Job Search
Post a Position  Post a Position
Organization Information
Public Employee Retirement System of Idaho (PERSI)

Boise,  ID 83720
United States
Michael Kennedy