Edmund M. Burke, pioneer in pension fund consulting, died Sunday in Palos Hills, Ill., of complications from a stroke, said Howard H. Pohl, principal at Becker Burke Associates. He was 84.
Mr. Burke was working as an executive at Borg-Warner Co. when he was introduced to executives of A.G. Becker & Co., and together they saw the need for evaluation of pension fund performance.
Mr. Burke joined A.G. Becker, an investment banking and brokerage firm and commercial paper dealer, and helped start its Funds Evaluation Group, which was a pioneer in pension fund performance evaluation at corporate funds and later at public funds, Taft-Hartley funds and endowments and foundations. FEG also provided analysis of money managers, recommending hiring and firing to clients.
The A.G. Becker Funds Evaluation Group, where Mr. Burke was a senior vice president, became the largest pension fund consulting firm in the 1960s and 1970s, having one-half of the pension fund market, Mr. Pohl said. It devised the performance evaluation metric that became the pension fund consulting industry convention, ranking performance by percentile, placing the first percentile as highest, Mr. Pohl said.
Mr. Burke joined SEI Corp. in 1983 when it bought the Funds Evaluation Group from Becker. In 1985, Mr. Burke founded Becker Burke Associates Inc., adding the name of his former employer as a tribute to its pioneering effort.
Last year, he stepped away from day-to-day management but continued with his client relationship activity, and sold his interest in the firm to principals of Becker Burke, Mr. Pohl said.
Visitation will be from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. CDT Friday at Zimmerman and Sandeman-Orland Funeral Home, 9900 W. 143rd St., Orland Park, Ill. The funeral Mass will be 10 a.m. CDT Saturday at St. Francis of Assisi Church, Orland Park, followed by burial at Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Worth.
Donations may be made to Misericordia, 6300 N. Ridge Ave., Chicago, IL 60660.