Ross Cockrell, a venture partner with Austin Ventures, has teamed up with ex-banker Tony Schell to form a new late-stage structured financing fund. Schell recently resigned as head of the technology and life sciences unit of Comerica Bank in Austin, Texas, to join forces with Cockrell. The Austin Business Journal reported that a third partner, a Jim Ellison of Palo Alto, Calif., would also join the fund. The fund will have offices in Austin and Silicon Valley. Speculation is that the new fund will focus on subordinated debt financing, although its size or what type of sectors it will pursue is still unknown.

Bret Pearlman plans to leave his senior managing director post with The Blackstone Group, the Wall Street Journal reported last week. Pearlman will become a partner with Elevation Partners, a private equity firm formed earlier this year by Roger McNamee ? founder of Integral Capital Partners and Silver Lake Capital ? and former Electronic Arts Inc. president John Riccitiello. The Journal also cites sources that say that Elevation Partners is seeking to raise upwards of $1 billion for its inaugural fund.

Nicholas Hofgren has joined The Brunswick Group as a managing director. He most recently served as a senior advisor at a privately held commodities trading business in the Caspian region.

Eric Henry has been named executive director of the Pennsylvania State Employees? Retirement System. He currently runs the state pension system in New Hampshire, and replaces Charles Brosius, who is retiring.

Christian Rochat has agreed to join Clayton, Dubilier & Rice Inc. as a London-based partner, effective in mid-June. He most recently served as a managing director with Morgan Stanley Capital Partners.

Jeri Harman has joined Allied Capital Corp. as a managing director, and head of the New York-based firm?s new Los Angeles office. She was managing director of American Capital Strategies.

Ned Villers joined Summit Partners as a Palo Alto, Calif.-based vice president focused on health care. He was a vice president with One Equity Partners.

John Lancaster, a managing director with Carlyle/Riverstone Global Energy & Power Fund, has joined the board of Magellan Midstream Partners LP.

Highland Capital Partners has promoted principals Jon Auerbach and Fergal Mullen to general partners. Auerbach joined Highland in 2000 to focus on the communications sector; he is a former business journalist for both The Wall Street Journal and Boston Globe. Mullen focuses on software and services companies in North America and in Europe; he previously served as founding partner of RSA Ventures.

Jan Barker, a principal with MedVenture Associates, has been appointed chairwoman of MedVenture portfolio company Sleep Solutions Inc.

Kenneth Kelley has joined the board of directors of Halozyme Therapeutics Inc., a San Diego-based drug company focused on recombinant human enzymes. Kelley has founded IntraBiotics Pharmaceuticals Inc., served as a GP with Latterell Venture Partners and been an associate with Institutional Venture Partners.

Thomas Foley, founder and chairman of The NTC Group, has been named co-chair of President Bush?s reelection campaign in Connecticut. Foley is a longtime supporter of President Bush and had been put in charge of private-sector development in Iraq, under the Coalition Provisional Authority.

Ann Hanham, a managing director with Burrill & Co., and Marc Ostro, a managing director of TL Ventures, have resigned from the board of Immunicon Corp. The resignations were planned, as the company went public last month and is no longer a VC-backed company. ?A.G./D.P.