Lewis & Clark Eyes Alternatives

Jun 30 2006 | 3:25pm ET

Lewis & Clark College, which has a $20 million endowment, is in the midst of an asset study conducted by newly hired consultant Cambridge Associates, according to Denis Ransmeier, vice president for business and finance at the Portland, Ore., school.

The endowment currently has 95% of its assets in a combination of domestic and international equities and 5% in cash.

"I think [Cambridge] will come up with some recommendations and if they begin to look at other allocations, then they will have to do some (manager) searches," Ransmeier said.

He anticipates the recommendations will be for fixed-income and alternatives, including hedge funds, private equity and real estate.

"There is nothing in the bylaws that prohibits us from investing in these assets."

Cambridge was hired to replace R.V. Kuhns & Associates last month.

Cambridge started the asset study because the endowment is overweight in equities, which have been hit hard over the last two months. The consulting firm will meet with the board to present a preliminary draft of the study next week, however, Ransmeier, who was hired in 2005, will not be included in those discussions because he resigned from his post last month. He cited family reasons for his resignation, and his last day will be July 31. The endowment has tapped Carl Vance to replace him. Calls to the school to reach Vance were unsuccessful.

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