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Executive moves, week of Nov. 23, 2009

Braemar Energy promotes Ma to partner

Braemar Energy Ventures has promoted Jiong Ma to the position of partner. She joined Braemar’s Boston-based office in 2007, and she has worked on such deals as Laser Light Engines, Convey Computer and Powervation.

Rhee heads to GB Merchant

James Rhee

has joined GB Merchant Partners as a managing director of the 1903 Equity Fund, which invests in middle-market retail and consumer products companies. He previously was with J.W. Childs Associates.

Altira Group boosts staff

Altira Group has promoted both Sean Ebert and Cory Steffek from senior associates to principals. Ebert joined the energy-focused firm in March 2008 from Booz Allen Hamilton. Steffek joined in April 2008 after receiving his MBA from the Kellogg School of Management.

Advent adds Sachinis

Harry Sachinis has joined Advent International as an operating partner, with a particular focus on the publishing and information services sectors. He previously was president of The McGraw-Hill Companies’ business information group.

Catalyst Investors hires Bihler

Susan Bihler has joined growth equity firm Catalyst Investors as an analyst. She previously was an analyst in CIT Group’s communications, media and entertainment group.

Liber lands Friedman

Art Friedman, former president and CEO of Gold Coast Distributors, has joined Liber Capital as a managing director. Liber is a New York-based private equity firm focused on the beverage industry.

Hassan joins Warburg Pincus

Fred Hassan

has joined Warburg Pincus as a senior advisor, focused on the health care sector. He had served as chairman and CEO of Schering-Plough Corp. from 2003 until it was acquired earlier this month by Merck & Co.

Alternative Investment Management hires Harrison

Susan Potok Harrison has joined Alternative Investment Management as director of investor relations. She previously was director of investor relations with Quinlan Private, a European real estate private equity firm. Harrison will work closely with endowments, foundations and high net worth individuals, helping manage the firm’s investor relations and overall communications with its partners.

Jacobs named CEO of Lazard, succeeds Wassertein

Lazard Ltd. has named Kenneth Jacobs as its new CEO, succeeding the late Bruce Wasserstein. Jacobs has been with the firm for more than two decades, becoming deputy chairman in 2002. Wasserstein died in October at the age of 60.

Wellington woos Speer

Eric Speer has joined specialty finance company Wellington Financial, as head of transaction sourcing and business development activities in the Western United States. He previously was with venture debt lender Vencore Capital.