The firm is also clearing the way for a new unit to be managed by Manish Mehta, its former head of human resources. Mehta will run the BlackRock Global Markets Group, overseeing trading, lending and other functions around the firm's relationship with Wall Street. Mr. Mehta stepped into the human resources role in a moment of crisis for the department when an earlier HR chief was fired for violating company policy following an office romance.
Wednesday's changes come at a pivotal time for BlackRock, which remains in political crossfire over its sustainability-minded investment products. Republican lawmakers and governors have retaliated against ESG efforts, and Democratic leaders and pundits have chastised the $8 trillion asset manager for holding large stakes in companies that pollute and manufacture guns.
"The actions we announced today and in October will deepen our connections with clients, further strengthen our investment platform and promote BlackRock's next generation of leaders," Chief Executive Officer Larry Fink and President Rob Kapito wrote in the memo.
Joud Abdel Majeid, previously deputy chief financial officer, will succeed Ms. Boss as head of investment stewardship, a position that's increasingly visible as sustainability issues foment in Washington.
In other changes to the client group, Armando Senra will take over BlackRock's institutional business in the Americas. Dominik Rohe will replace Mr. Senra as head of the Americas iShares and index business.
BlackRock also altered its global executive committee.
Several women were added to the senior group. Ms. Majeid and Caroline Heller, who's replacing Mr. Mehta atop the human resources department, will both join the group, along with deputy head of Asia-Pacific Susan Chan, and chief investment officer of ETF & index investments Samara Cohen. Two senior investment officials, Rick Rieder and Raffaele Savi, will also join.
Some leaders will step away from the global executive committee — potentially pointing to changes to who's in the running to succeed Fink, 70, in the event of his retirement. Gary Shedlin and Mark McCombe — both in transition to vice chairmen roles — will step down from the group that steers key decisions at the firm, as will existing Vice Chairman Rob Fairbairn.