Private equity pioneer Fewel to leave post at Oregon

Jay Fewel, who helped guide Oregon’s state Treasury into private equity investments, is retiring, a Treasury spokesperson told peHUB.

Fewel, whose title is senior equity investment officer, announced his retirement to Treasury staff Tuesday. Fewel, 58, has worked at the Oregon State Treasury for 24 years, starting his career in 1989, according to a Treasury spokesperson. He will officially retire on Feb. 1.

No word yet on who will replace Fewel; Treasury will announce the process for identifying a successor at the Oregon Investment Council meeting on January 29.

Prior to Oregon, Fewel was a portfolio manager at Qualivest Capital Management in Portland. At the time he was hired, the Oregon Public Employees’ Retirement System had a value of about $9 billion. As of October 31, the pension system stood at $66.3 billion, and private equity investments represented about 21.3 percent of that total, according to a statement from the system.

Fewel helped move Oregon into alternative investments, particularly private equity. Those alternative investments posted an average annual return of 15.7 percent since the early 1980s, according to a statement from the Treasurer’s office.

“Jay is respected throughout the institutional investment community for his keen insights and consistent ability to cultivate successful investment partnerships, a legacy that will pay handsome dividends for Oregonians now and well into the future,” said John Skjervem, Oregon’s chief investment officer, in a statement.

Luisa Beltran contributed to this report.