Chief Investment Officer Nicole Musicco will step down on Sept. 29, the California Public Employees’ Retirement System announced on Friday.
Musicco said the decision was to attend to the immediate needs of family in her native home of Toronto. She took on the CIO role in February 2022 and only the second female CIO in the $463 billion pension fund’s history. She has been in recent weeks shuttling between Toronto and Sacramento to help handlers of her large, multigenerational family.
“Leading the CalPERS investment office has been an honor, and I am proud of the work my team has done to fulfill the retirement promises made to the 2 million Californians who have spent their lives in public service,” Musicco said. “However, at this time I need to prioritize those who need me the most, my family and children.”
With guidance from the board and chief executive officer, CalPERS officials will soon launch a global search to identify candidates for the position.
CalPERS Deputy CIO Dan Bienvenue will serve as interim CIO. Bienvenue joined CalPERS in 2004 and has held several leadership roles with the investment office. Prior to joining CalPERS, he was a principal and senior portfolio manager with Barclays Global Investors, leading an international equity portfolio management team responsible for $55 billion across developed and emerging markets.
Officials point to Musicco’s tenure being one focused on private market investing, including new co-investing opportunities. Recently, it was disclosed that the system allocated $11 billion to alts in the first quarter.
She is also said to have championed a $1 billion commitment last year to identifying and supporting next generation of emerging and diverse investor entrepreneurs in private markets.