MacDonald Leaves Harvard to Run Money of Fidelity’s Johnsons

Feb 12, 2014 12:37 pm ET

(Updates with endowment results in last paragraph.)

Feb. 12 (Bloomberg) --- Lane MacDonald, who oversaw private-equity investments for Harvard University’s endowment, has left the school to manage money for the Johnson family, owners of Fidelity Investments.

MacDonald will become president of Crosby Company of New Hampshire, the family office for the Johnson family, Vincent Loporchio, a spokesman for Fidelity in Boston, wrote in an e- mail today. The office is based in Salem, New Hampshire.

MacDonald joined Harvard Management in 2008 and was named head of the endowment’s private-equity investments in October last year. Harvard $32.7 billion endowment makes it the world’s wealthiest university. The school helped redefine endowment investing by pushing into alternative assets such as private- equity funds.

Fidelity, which managed $1.9 trillion as of Dec. 31, is the second-largest U.S. mutual fund company, trailing only Vanguard Group Inc. in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania. The Johnson family owns 49 percent of FMR LLC, Fidelity’s holding company, according to regulatory filings.

Edward C. Johnson III, Fidelity’s chairman and chief executive officer, is worth $6.3 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. His daughter Abigail P. Johnson, president of Fidelity, has an estimated fortune of $9.1 billion.

MacDonald played for the U.S. hockey team at the Winter Olympics in 1988 and was captain of Harvard’s hockey team when it won the NCAA championship in 1989.

Kevin Galvin, a spokesman for Harvard University, declined to comment on MacDonald’s move, which was reported earlier today by the Boston Globe.

Harvard’s endowment said in September it had an 11.3 percent gain in the year ended June 30, 2013, fueled by domestic and foreign stock markets. The Cambridge, Massachusetts-based university said that while private-equity investments generated a return of 11 percent in 2013, over the previous decade they failed to outperform public equities.

--Editors: Christian Baumgaertel, Josh Friedman