Harvard Treasurer Succession

Paul J. Finnegan to succeed James F. Rothenberg in senior financial role

Paul J. Finnegan and James F. Rothenberg

The University announced today that Paul J. Finnegan ’75, M.B.A. ’82, a member of the Harvard Corporation since 2012, will succeed James F. Rothenberg ’68, M.B.A. ’70, a member of the Corporation since 2004, as treasurer on July 1. Rothenberg will continue to serve as a Corporation member—presumably through 2016, when he would reach the normal term limit under the governance reforms adopted in 2010.

The treasurer has wide responsibilities for overseeing University finances, and signs the annual financial report with the vice president for finance/chief financial officer.

Finnegan, co-CEO of Madison Dearborn Partners, a Chicago-based private-equity firm, is a past member of the Board of Overseers and past president of the Harvard Alumni Association. He is chair of the Corporation’s committee on finance, and recently became a member of the board of directors of Harvard Management Company (HMC), which invests the endowment. Finnegan is co-chair of The Harvard Campaign’s executive committee; co-chair of the campaign for the Graduate School of Education; and vice chair of the campaign for Harvard Business School.

Rothenberg is chairman of the Capital Group Companies, a Los Angeles-based investment firm that manages mutual funds and other assets. He also chairs the HMC board of directors and is a trustee of the California Institute of Technology. He served on the committee that formulated the 2010 governance reforms, and is also a co-chair of the campaign. A prodigious University fundraiser, he has also made significant gifts, including endowing faculty chairs and helping to underwrite House renewal.

The governance reforms do not make explicit such a transition in the treasurer’s position, and no indication was given that such a change was in the offing when the Senior Fellow and his successor briefed Harvard Magazine on Corporation affairs in early May—nor was any further explanation provided with today’s announcement. Nonetheless, the transfer of responsibilities would seem to effect continuity of oversight in this critical role, while retaining the services of both Finnegan and Rothenberg on the Corporation and in their intensive new capital-campaign roles.


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