John Howard Hobbs, a co-founder of Jennison Associates, died Jan. 3 of natural causes at his home in Charlemont, Mass. He was 73.
Mr. Hobbs and Spiros “Sig” Segalas founded Jennison, one of the first independent institutional money management firms, in 1969. Prudential Insurance Co. of America (now Prudential Financial), Newark, N.J., acquired Jennison Associates in 1985, although it continues to operate under the Jennison name from its base in New York and managed about $90 billion as of Dec. 31.
Mr. Hobbs became Jennison's president and CEO in 1976 and also became chairman in 1994. In 1996, he added the role of president of Prudential's institutional asset management unit.
In 2000, Prudential moved all actively managed public equities into the Jennison unit. In that year, Mr. Hobbs assumed oversight of all of Prudential's equity asset management activities, including those of its subsidiary Quantitative Management Associates.
Mr. Hobbs was named Jennison's vice chairman in late 2002 and retired in 2003.
“John was the definition of magnanimous,” said Mr. Segalas in an obituary prepared by Mr. Hobbs' family.
“His work ethic was second to none as he was often found working at the office over the weekends. His humor was infectious, his laughter ever present and his eyes always had a twinkle. He will be deeply missed by his many friends at Jennison,” Mr. Segalas, Jennison's current president and chief investment officer, said in the family's statement.
In an interview, Dennis M. Kass, Jennison's chairman, who replaced Mr. Hobbs as Jennison's CEO, said, “John and Sig built an investment firm of incomparable quality and integrity. John's vision continues to be a sustaining force for the company today. It was a privilege to work with him closely during my own transition. I will always be grateful for his friendship, advice and counsel.”
Most recently, Mr. Hobbs was vice chairman of Madison Asset Management Group LLC, Washington, a global infrastructure investment specialist.
Mr. Hobbs is survived by his two daughters, Margaret M. Hobbs and Kate H. Hobbs, and his son George C. Hobbs.
A memorial service will be held at the Harvard Club of New York City, 35 W. 44th St., New York, at 11 a.m. EST on Jan. 15, immediately followed by a reception from noon to 1 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorials be made to the Harvard Graduate School of Education Hobbs Fellowship, 13 Appian Way, Cambridge, MA 02138; Wesleyan University, c/o University Relations, 318 High St., Middletown, CT 06459; the Foundation for Child Development, 295 Madison Ave., 40th Floor, New York, NY 10017; and The Academy at Charlemont, 1359 Route 2, Charlemont, MA 01339.