Power Broker: Ashton S. McFadden

Ashton S. McFadden

Managing director and founder, Jamesbeck Global Partners LLC, New York

On a stormy Sunday evening 14 years ago, portfolio manager Ashton McFadden got a call from a recruiter about another money management job. The call turned into a surprising offer to work at the headhunting firm, which he accepted.

That background makes Mr. McFadden stand out as headhunter.

“Other recruiters just don't "get' our industry. They're generalists. The reason I like Ashton is that he and the partners that back him up are industry professionals. They've worked in some of these jobs,” said Tracy McHale Stuart, chief executive officer of Corbin Capital Partners LLC, New York.

In 2001, Mr. McFadden and five colleagues from a larger search firm formed Jamesbeck.

Among the clients that have used Mr. McFadden are Barclays Global Investors, BlackRock (BLK) Inc. (BLK), Blackstone Alternative Asset Management LP, Capital Group Cos., Fortress Investment Group, Julius Baer Investment Management, Man Investments, The Rockefeller Foundation and Schroders PLC.

Hans Danielsson, head of equities at AIG Investments, New York, has used Mr. McFadden's services at Jamesbeck and predecessor firms for about 10 years. Over that period, the money handled for external clients by the asset management subsidiary of American International Group Inc. grew to $130 billion from zero.

Mr. Danielsson recently invited Mr. McFadden to lunch and Mr. McFadden assumed there was a search coming up. “But Hans just wanted to say thank you for all the years we'd worked together. I was really touched. It was such a verification of what I try to do in the job,” Mr. McFadden said.

Final words: “Honestly, I've found that I often know more about asset management firms than people who have worked at them for many years. There's much more than monetary satisfaction for me in helping a client and watching them grow over a long time period,” Mr. McFadden said.