Changes Afoot at Carlyle Venture Partners

Bob Grady is in talks to change roles at The Carlyle Group, where he has overseen venture capital and growth equity investing since 2000. Grady would still be involved with the $1.5 billion Carlyle Venture Partners – including serving on portfolio company boards and assisting with fundraising – but would give up day-to-day operational control. His new role would be to focus on broader issues affecting Carlyle Group as a whole, including regulatory and social responsibility issues.

This is similar to what former RNC chair Ken Mehlman recently agreed to do for KKR, except that Grady would remain based in San Francisco. For example, Grady might become the point man when California legislators draft a revised bill to preclude state pension funds from investing in firms partially owned by certain sovereign wealth funds.

Carlyle does already have a managing director of global government and regulatory affairs – David Marchick – but also has such vast interests that both men could probably work 18-hour days without stepping on each other’s toes.

For context, Grady has a bunch of government contacts, having once served as deputy assistant to President George H.W. Bush and as executive associate director of the Office of Management & Budget between 1991 and 1993. He also was chief speechwriter and senior advisor to the 1998 Bush/Quayle campaign, and has served as chairman of the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA).

Nothing is set in stone yet, but Grady’s transition would be part of a larger personnel shift at Carlyle Venture Partners, which is currently investing out of a $605 million fund raised in 2006. The firm has had a pair of West Coast partners poached over the past year, and has replaced them with Nick Sturiale (formerly with Sevin Rosen Funds) and Greg Rossman (formerly with Pequot Capital). It also has quietly hired Jeb Miller as a principal. For those who don’t remember, Miller was previously a partner with ComVentures, who was ousted as part of the coup that transformed that firm into Velocity Interactive Group.