Stepping up: CalSTRS hires new chief investment officer from within its ranks

Following a global search, California’s educator-only pension fund has appointed a new chief investment officer from within its ranks.

Scott Chan will lead the California State Teachers’ Retirement System investment strategy beginning July 1, following former CIO Christopher J. Ailmen’s retirement. Chan has worked under Ailmen as deputy CIO since 2018.

“As deputy CIO, Scott has already brought so much value to CalSTRS,” the pension system’s CEO Cassandra Lichnock said. “He is helping lead the alignment of our organizational sustainability goals with our sustainable investing and net zero goals. I look forward to his partnership as we continue to fulfill our promise to California’s teachers.”

Chan played a role in the direction of CalSTRS’ Collaborative Model investment strategy, which brings more assets in-house and leverages external partnerships to help protect and grow the fund. The model has reportedly saved CalSTRS $1.6 billion since 2017, the pension system said in announcing Chan’s appointment.

“I am committed to driving excellence in how we invest, including advancing sustainability practices and promoting diversity across CalSTRS, our portfolio companies, partners and the industry, “ Chan said.

As CIO, Chan will manage $332.5 billion in assets.

Chan’s annual salary will be $540,000 plus an incentive opportunity of 200%, the pension system said.