Working at Commonfund | Glassdoor

Commonfund Overview

Wilton, CT
51 to 200 employees
1971
Nonprofit Organization
Investment Banking & Asset Management
$25 to $50 million (USD) per year
Commonfund was founded in 1971 as an independent nonprofit asset management firm with a grant from the Ford Foundation. Together with or through its affiliates, Commonfund today manages customized investment programs for endowments, foundations and public pension funds. Among ... Read more

Mission: Our core mission is to enhance the financial resources of our clients and to help them improve investment management practices. As a private, nonprofit organization, we are beholden to our clients, not to shareholders or outside owners. This enables us to align our interests ... Read more

Commonfund – Why Work For Us?


About Us

Commonfund is an asset management firm founded in 1971 with a two-part mission. First, to create investment solutions for nonprofits that previously did not have the scale and access to the best managers and strategies. As importantly, our charter was to also create educational programs that would bring current best practices to institutional investors of all sizes and segments. Our insights have helped to advance asset management practices and grow portfolios through ever-changing investment environments. Commonfund too, has changed and grown dramatically over the years–expanding both our investment solution offerings and the client segments we serve. Yet, our mission has remained the same: to enhance the financial resources and improve the investment management practices of our clients. Our only business is asset management and we are active in all sectors of the global capital markets – in both public and private markets.

Our Mission

Our core mission is to enhance the financial resources of our clients and to help them improve investment management practices. As a private, nonprofit organization, we are beholden to our clients, not to shareholders or outside owners. This enables us to align our interests with those of our clients and lets us focus our undivided attention on institutional asset management. 

How we execute our mission is the key difference that sets us apart, with three mutually supportive components grounded in a strong financial foundation.

Performance
Investment programs that seek to generate superior risk-adjusted, long-term investment performance net of fees²

Service
Support based on an in-depth understanding of client needs

Insight 
Knowledge sharing, educational programs and research that promote best practices among institutional investors

Our strong financial resources serve as the underpinning that enables us to implement our mission. It is this strong base that permits us to hire, grow and retain talented people; invest in information technology and other client support assets; and consistently deliver a broad range of educational programs specifically for institutional investors.

Our clients are different than other institutional investors. They serve a higher mission. Their operations and principles are held to a higher standard. They want to invest with advisors who first and foremost pursue exceptional performance, but who also share their mission and understand how they work.

Nonprofit Institutional Investors

We were founded to focus exclusively on the asset management needs of nonprofit investors and have maintained that focus for over 40 years. Today, we serve all types of nonprofits:

Educational Endowments

  • Private colleges and universities
  • Public colleges and universities and their supporting foundations.
  • Community colleges
  • K-12 Independent schools

Foundations and Philanthropic Organizations

  • Private and Family Foundations
  • Community Foundations
  • Public Foundations and Charities
  • Cultural Organizations (e.g., museums, symphonies, ballets)
  • Religious Organizations
  • Social Services Organizations

Hospitals and Healthcare Organizations

  • Operating fund pools
  • Insurance and funded depreciation reserves
  • Endowment and foundation assets
  • Defined benefit pension plans


Family Offices & Trusts

Often, the management and oversight of private and family foundations' are closely linked with affiliated family offices and trusts.  These organizations have a need for professional asset management, yet they may find that traditional providers of investment services typically lack institutional rigor in their approach and sophisticated alternative asset management. Commonfund partners with family offices to provide our unique skills and institutional quality solutions to their nonprofit clients.


Pension Plans & Plan Sponsors

Since the 1990’s Commonfund has managed pension assets affiliated with U.S. and (later,) Canadian nonprofit organizations, including hospitals, colleges and universities.

Recently we broadened our plan sponsor universe beyond this nonprofit community to include public defined benefit plans.

Careers

Our employees drive the success of our company and with that in mind, we strive to create and provide an environment that offers challenging, stimulating and rewarding opportunities.

Opportunities

We are looking for dynamic team players who value innovation and collaboration. We believe that creating a diverse mix of people, ideas and talents will enhance our business performance and allow us to meet our client’s objectives.

Our Culture & Values

Commonfund fosters a culture that embraces and promotes principles of good business and professional ethics.  This approach is woven into our values and guides the day-to-day actions of every Commonfund employee.

We have a global network of professionals dedicated to delivering competitive performance for our clients. Commonfund fosters collaboration, which means our people at all levels are accessible to each other, and share ideas and best practices.

All employees have opportunities to be key contributors to our business and are part of a healthy, challenging work environment.

Commonfund Reviews

3.6
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Mark J.P. Anson, PhD
2 Ratings
  • "Great company but I admit I'm biased"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Managing Director in Wilton, CT
    Current Employee - Managing Director in Wilton, CT
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Commonfund full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Commonfund is a mission based organization that is a nice blend of not-for-profit focus yet competitive pay and ample resources. Commonfund has access to the best investment managers and a long tradition of providing value to its clients. I'm a long term managing director so definitely biased but I can honestly say that we have a great senior management team and a lot of optimism about the direction of our company these days.

    Cons

    Commonfund has had some considerable turnover among our senior executives in recent years, including the recent departure of our former CEO Catherine Keating. Catherine was a strong leader and was great with clients so we were all disappointed to see her go, but the good news is that our CIO Mark Anson has stepped up to the CEO role and is another fantastic leader for our firm. I guess that doesn't sound like much of a con, so I'll say that the investment management business is tough these days with a lot of intense competition and pressure on fees, so we run lean and mean and everyone has to work hard around here. But it's interesting work and our clients are mostly endowments and foundations funding worthy institutions and causes so we all feel good about what we are doing.

    Advice to Management

    It's nice to see some more employee events lately and having a little fun so I hope that continues.

See All 38 Reviews

Commonfund Photos

Commonfund photo of: Elaine Mizner and George Suttles recruiting at Howard University
Commonfund photo of: Keith Luke, Tim Yates and Tony Ialeggio gather at the holiday party
Commonfund photo of: Corporate 5K Team
Commonfund photo of: Audley Mackel at Atlanta Career Fair
Commonfund photo of: Staff at the opening of the New York office
Commonfund photo of: Jim Bowles meets up with board member Dr. William Trueheart
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