Real Desrochers was named senior investment officer for CalPERS' $49 billion alternative investment management program, spokesman Clark McKinley confirmed Tuesday.
Mr. Desrochers was the investment officer in charge of the $155.4 billion West Sacramento-based California State Teachers' Retirement System's private equity program; he left in 2009. Most recently, he had worked as chief investment officer of the Saudi Arabian Investment Co.
Since leaving CalSTRS, he has also advised Blackstone Capital, J.H. Whitney, Texas Pacific Group, Permira, and China Renaissance Industries.
“I'm extremely confident in Real Desrochers and his skills leading our team of investment professionals,” Joseph Dear, CIO of the $235.2 billion California Public Employees' Retirement System, Sacramento, said in a statement.
Mr. Desrochers replaces Leon Shahinian who resigned in August 2010. Mr. Shahinian was put on administrative leave in May 2010 by CalPERS senior management. This followed his name surfacing in a state civil fraud lawsuit against former CalPERS CEO Fred Buenrostro and Alfred Villalobos, a placement agent and former CalPERS board member.
Mr. Shaninian was not charged in the lawsuit.
Mr. McKinley said Mr. Dear had been interim head of the private equity program during the search for a replacement. He said a start date for Mr. Desrochers has not yet been determined.
Mr. McKinley said $33 billion of the $49 billion committed in the CalPERS program has been deployed with general partners.