Retirement Industry People Moves

Northwestern Mutual-Puget Sound selects managing partner; chief product officer joins OneDigital; Northern Trust announces hiring of new CIO; and more.

Art by Subin Yang

Northwestern Mutual-Puget Sound Selects Managing Partner

Northwestern Mutual has appointed Steven Trujillo to serve as managing partner of its Puget Sound Network Office, including its district offices in Seattle; Tacoma, Washington; Bellevue, Washington; Bellingham, Washington; and Alaska, effective in January.

As managing partner, Trujillo will oversee the overall market development of the Puget Sound Network Office.

“I am excited to take on this leadership role and continue to drive the network office’s long-term growth,” Trujillo says. “I’m honored to have the opportunity to further empower our financial adviser teams to provide the highest level of client experience and advocate for the continued advancement of diverse leaders.”

Trujillo joined Northwestern Mutual in 2009. He became a field director in 2012, then started as the managing director of the New Mexico/West Texas District in Albuquerque, New Mexico, beginning in 2015. He relocated to Seattle in March 2020 to help grow and lead the Puget Sound Network Office.

Trujillo holds a Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU) professional designation from the American College of Financial Services. He is a longtime member, and previous board member, of the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (NAIFA).

Chief Product Officer Joins OneDigital

OneDigital has hired Vinay Gidwaney as chief product officer.

In this new role, Gidwaney will focus on building talent and resources in OneDigital’s technology team to drive digital solutions, agile technology, and new products and solutions for OneDigital’s customers and the industry.

“We’re thrilled to have Vinay on board as a critical member of the team, working to add talent and resources to our strong team of current technology experts and developers,” says Adam Bruckman, CEO of OneDigital. “His vision of creating stability for families through our integrated offerings and driving change through the broker lens will push OneDigital forward in developing products and solutions that better the customer experience.”

Gidwaney is a veteran to the employee benefits and insurance space, having founded Maxwell Health, which was later acquired by Sun Life Financial, a financial services organization offering a wide range of insurance and investment products.

Most recently, Gidwaney was the head of technology at Boston-based CIC Health, working to scale up operations for COVID-19 testing and mass vaccination sites across Massachusetts. In addition to his role at OneDigital, Gidwaney is also a board member at the education and social justice nonprofit Design for Change USA, and he sits on the advisory boards of several startups in the insurtech, life sciences and health care industries.

OneDigital says Gidwaney’s appointment signals an important investment into the firm’s technology initiatives.

Northern Trust Announces Hiring of New CIO

Northern Trust Asset Management has named Angelo Manioudakis as the firm’s new chief investment officer (CIO). He will assume the position on September 27.

Manioudakis has served in senior roles at other global financial firms during his 32-year career in financial services, most recently as a managing partner with Lantern Harbor Investment Partners, a Boston-based global alternative investment firm that he co-founded.

Prior to Lantern Harbor, he served as CIO of Fidelity’s Global Asset Allocation division. While at Fidelity, Manioudakis oversaw improvement in investment performance across approximately $500 billion in assets and achieved significant growth in the firm’s outsourced chief investment officer (OCIO) business.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in finance from Bentley College in Boston and a master’s in business administration from Harvard Business School. He is a trustee of the American College of Greece, where he also oversees its endowment as chair of its investment committee.

Manioudakis will be reporting to Northern Trust Asset Management President Shundrawn Thomas, who says, Angelo has a proven track record of leadership in the investment management industry spanning three decades. His experience is ideally aligned with our investment philosophy centered on compensating investors for the risk they take in all market environments.”

Among Manioudakis’ responsibilities will be investment performance, process and philosophy for all Northern Trust Asset Management products. He will chair the firm’s Investment Policy Committee, which sets investment policy for all Northern Trust groups in all asset classes.

Morgan Stanley Partners With Empower

Morgan Stanley at Work has announced a strategic partnership with Empower Retirement.

“We are pleased to continue to strengthen our relationship with Empower and to reimagine the retirement space—giving employers the services they need under one roof, while also helping employees to achieve the best possible outcomes for their financial futures,” says Brian McDonald, co-head of Morgan Stanley at Work. “Morgan Stanley at Work and Empower currently have thousands of mutual clients, and we expect that number to grow significantly through this expanded partnership.”

The Empower partnership will expand Morgan Stanley at Work’s ability to serve adviser-sold plans under $50 million in assets with comprehensive retirement solutions to attract and retain talent. The partnership with Empower comes shortly after Morgan Stanley at Work announced a business partnership and strategic investment with Vestwell to serve small retirement plans.

IRIC Appoints Executive Director

The Institutional Retirement Income Council (IRIC) has appointed Michelle Richter as executive director, effective October 1.

Richter, a 20-year retirement industry veteran, becomes IRIC’s second executive director and will succeed Robert Melia, who is retiring at the end of September.

“The board is thrilled to have Michelle lead IRIC at a time when plan sponsors are searching for innovative and effective ways to provide their employees with retirement income security,” says William Charyk, IRIC’s board chairman. “Michelle brings a unique combination of experience, knowledge and proven track record in the wealth management, insurance and retirement industries, and we look forward to her energy and thought leadership. On behalf of the board, we want to thank Bob for his many contributions and wish him well in his future endeavors.” 

Richter is the founder of Fiduciary Insurance Services LLC, a strategic consultancy and registered investment adviser (RIA) and will continue in that role.

She has 20 years of experience inventing, deploying, advocating for and scaling innovative products and programs at the intersection between insurance and wealth management. Richter serves in both retail and institutional channels, advising insurers, financial institutions and academics on new product and program design, strategic planning, launch execution, industry advocacy, marketing and competitive intelligence. 

She holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from Wesleyan University and a master’s degree in both management and finance from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business.

“I am honored and incredibly excited to work with IRIC’s membership, as well as with other industry organizations that share IRIC’s mission and goals,” Richter says. “Our nation is at a critical junction to foster connections between retirement plan participants, and efficient income sources and strategies for reliable and secure retirement income. I am grateful for the opportunity to lead IRIC and offer my experience to our members at this pivotal moment.”

Melia was appointed IRIC’s first executive director in 2017. His retirement is effective September 30. He will remain actively involved with the organization through the end of the year to help ensure a smooth leadership transition.

Allianz Life Hires Chief D&I Officer

Sophia Khan joined Allianz Life Insurance Co. of North America as its new chief diversity and inclusion (D&A) officer starting on September 13.

Khan is responsible for building upon and advancing the company’s internal and external D&I strategy. She reports directly to Allianz Life President and CEO Jasmine Jirele.

Khan brings more than 25 years of experience as a global D&I executive focused on driving organizational change aligned to business strategies. Before coming to Allianz Life, she was the vice president, head of global diversity, equity and inclusion at Thomson Reuters, where she built and deployed a D&I global strategy in collaboration with human resources (HR) and business segment and region leaders. Prior to that, Khan was senior director, head of global inclusion, diversity and engagement at Medtronic. She has held various leadership roles in D&I and HR at Wells Fargo, 3M and PepsiAmericas Inc.

“Sophia is recognized as a strategic leader who has driven impactful and data-driven D&I programs with measurable results,” Jirele says. “Increasing diversity in our business and supporting equity in our communities is not only core to our values, but also critical to our success. Her expertise will help us continue to advance and accelerate our diversity, equity and inclusion strategy so that we can be even more effective in our efforts in the years to come.”

Khan is also an adjunct master’s in business administration professor and guest lecturer on inclusive leadership and HR at University of St. Thomas, OPUS School of Business (Minnesota). She holds a master’s degree in human resource development from the University of St. Thomas and a bachelor’s degree in American studies with an emphasis in economics and cultural pluralism from the University of Minnesota.

Crossmark Global Investments Adds Managing Director of Platform Development & Strategic Relationships

Crossmark Global Investments has appointed Heather Lindsey as managing director of platform development and strategic relationships.

In this newly created role, Lindsey will be responsible for developing engagement strategies to strengthen client relationships, overseeing business strategy for all aspects of distribution partnerships with wealth management platforms, and effectively positioning Crossmark’s investment strategies, overall mission and core values.

“We are thrilled to have Heather on board with us and believe she will be instrumental to our firm’s growth,” says Mike Kern, president and CEO of Crossmark. “She possesses personal and professional values that establish a strong foundation for effective leadership, strategic thinking and a deep understanding of client needs.”

Prior to joining Crossmark, Lindsey spent 24 years at Invesco, where she held multiple significant roles, including two years as senior vice president, head of strategic accounts; 10 years as senior director, retirement and insurance platforms; and six years as vice president, senior national account manager.

“I’m honored to be joining a firm that prioritizes client partnerships and leads with a values-first approach,” Lindsey says. “Crossmark’s dedication to its team and determination to provide the best possible client experience is unique, and I look forward to being a part of such an admirable culture.”

Crossmark says its addition of this new role aligns with the firm’s long-standing core mission to meet client needs with a values-based approach. Lindsey will report directly to Kern and will be the newest member of the firm’s executive team.

Her hiring comes shortly after the hiring of Bob Doll as chief investment officer (CIO) in June. The firm says these two industry veterans have been added to expand and accelerate its asset growth, product line, and sales and distribution relationships.