Managing Director Virtanen departs New York State Teachers’ Retirement System

  • Virtanen worked for NYSTRS for 38 years
  • Took over the private equity portfolio in 2013
  • Previously led the pension’s real estate portfolio

Virtanen, who was a managing director, took over the private equity portfolio in 2013, two years after Dhvani Shah left the retirement system for a position at the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund, Pensions & Investments reported. A 38-year veteran of the retirement system, Virtanen joined New York State Teachers’ staff in 1977 and led its real estate team from 2005 until 2013.

Virtanen’s departure likely signals his retirement, though he could not be reached for comment as of press time.

With Virtanen’s departure, New York State Teachers’ Manager Gerald Yahoudy and Assistant Manager Laura Hotaling will oversee the pension’s $8 billion private equity portfolio moving forward, Cardillo said. The retirement system planned to announce its long-term plans for the portfolio’s management some time in August.

New York State Teachers’ was a very active LP in during the second quarter of 2015, allocating more than $500 million across six private equity funds during the period. The portfolio has netted a 12 percent internal rate of return and 1.55x multiple on invested capital since its inception in 1984.