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Investment Office | Staff

Dr. Philip Zecher
Chief Investment Officer

Dr. Philip Zecher became MSU’s first Chief Investment Officer in 2016.  With over two decades of experience in the alternative investments industry, Dr. Zecher is a recognized expert in financial risk analytics.  In 1998, he left Deloitte Consulting to develop a proprietary risk system for a closely-held hedge fund. In 1999, this system became the core product for a new company, Investor Analytics, LLC (“IA”), that he founded with two other colleagues. The web-based risk-analytics product was a pioneer in delivering advanced analytics through a web-based application and the product grew to handle many billions of dollars of hedge fund assets.  He sold IA in 2006 before becoming a partner and chief risk officer of EQA Partners, a Stamford Connecticut based currency and global macro hedge fund. Prior to starting his finance career at Deloitte Consulting, Phil earned a Ph.D. in nuclear physics at Michigan State University and a BS in Physics at Ohio University. He is widely published in both academic journals and the financial press.  Previously Dr. Zecher served on the MSU Foundation Board of Directors and the College of Natural Science Dean’s Advisory Board, and is a past member of the President’s Leadership Advisory Committee for Winning Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB).

Cornelia Elisabeth (Beth) Forbes

Chief Operating Officer

Beth Forbes is the Chief Operating Officer for MSU’s Investment Office. She brings over 20 years of financial, operations, strategy and program management experience managing multi-disciplinary teams to reshape critical aspects of businesses undergoing significant restructuring, growth and/or transformation.  Her broad experience combines deep operational business understanding with an extensive foundation in tax, accounting, finance, operational risk management, internal controls and systems integration.  Prior to joining MSU, she was with JP Morgan for seven years where she was responsible for leading the strategy and execution of several of the firm’s most high profile regulatory, control, and risk mitigation programs under strict compressed deadlines.  She began her career in big 4 public accounting and her industry experience includes Wireless / Telecom, Technology, and Alternative Investments (Hedge Fund, Private Equity, and Real Estate from both an investment management and portfolio company perspective). Beth holds an MBA from Southern Methodist University, a Masters in Taxation from Georgia State University and a BBA in Accounting from Stetson University.  In addition, she is a Certified Public Accountant and a Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst.

Allen Huang

Director of Investments

Allen Huang is a Director of Investments for MSU. Prior to joining MSU, he was the Director of Fixed Income at the Indiana Public Retirement System (INPRS). His key responsibilities included asset allocation, investment manager selection, and portfolio management. Prior to joining INPRS in 2011, he worked at Barclays Capital and GE Capital. Allen holds an MBA from the University of Southern California and a bachelor’s degree in finance from Northeastern University.

Philip Douthit

Director of Investments

As Director of Investments for MSU, Philip Douthit applies over 35 years of experience in asset management and financial services to the Investment Office’s investment policy and strategy, portfolio management, and investment management.  Before joining MSU, he was Portfolio Manager & Head of Quantitative Analytics at Wells Fargo Portfolio Risk Advisors managing systematic option strategies for institutional investors, Portfolio Manager and Risk Manager at Tower Capital with funds of funds specializing in long-short equity strategies, and Director of Research and Product Development at Ferrell Capital managing funds of hedge funds blending multiple asset classes and styles.  Prior experience centered on developing proprietary trading systems for Liberty Brokerage, ABN Amro, IBM, BoA, and Clifford Drake.  Philip has a BS in Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering from Webb Institute.

Karina Akopov

Manager of Investments

Cheryl Brooks

Investment Analyst

Valarie Montgomery

Senior Investment Analyst

Patrick LaFontaine

Investment Analyst