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Fort Washington and Western & Southern Name Shipley New Co-CIO

Western & Southern Financial Group •
Chris Shipley photo
Western & Southern Financial Group announced that Christopher D. Shipley will succeed James J. Vance as senior vice president and co-chief investment officer of Fort Washington Investment Advisors, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Western & Southern, effective immediately. Vance has shared his intention to retire from the company after more than 30 years of service to Western & Southern and Fort Washington.

Until his official retirement later this year, Vance will remain to support a smooth transition. He will also continue his responsibilities, as senior vice president at Western & Southern, overseeing corporate development and strategic venture capital investment activity.

“Jim has played a critical role over his career at Western & Southern and, most recently, at Fort Washington, a recognized industry leader in the asset management industry,” said John F. Barrett, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Western & Southern. “His leadership and team-oriented drive for excellence and best practices have yielded exceptional results for our clients and policyholders. The strong foundation he was so instrumental in creating will leave a legacy with impact for years to come. We wish him many happy years in retirement.” 

Reporting to Barrett, Shipley will co-lead the company’s investment activities along with Brendan M. White, senior vice president and co-chief investment officer, who oversees fixed income investment functions. Shipley will oversee the development and oversight of all equity investments, with a primary focus on setting equity investment policy and directing equity portfolio management, research, trading and risk management functions. He and White will work together to ensure a coordinated and aligned strategic approach for the organization’s investment activity. 

“Chris brings a wealth of expertise and knowledge to Fort Washington,” said Maribeth Rahe, Fort Washington’s president and chief executive officer. “He is an astute executive, and his breadth and depth of knowledge of the financial services industry and strong active management background will help bolster our existing strategies and take our platform to the next level.”

Shipley held senior leadership positions at Northern Trust Asset Management in Chicago for the past 23 years. Most recently, he was chief investment strategist for North America, where he chaired the Tactical Asset Allocation Committee. Prior, he served as senior vice president, head of Fundamental Equities, and senior portfolio manager, where he oversaw fundamental portfolio management and equity research.

Shipley earned a bachelor’s in finance from Northern Illinois University and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Notre Dame. 

Vance’s retirement will conclude an exemplary run that began in 1994, when he left Eastman Kodak Company in Rochester, N.Y., to join Western & Southern as director of financial research. By 1997, he was named treasurer, a position he held – with multiple promotions and increasing levels of responsibility – until 2020, when he joined Fort Washington. Vance’s contributions in Cincinnati over the years extend well beyond his work at Western & Southern and Fort Washington to involvement with numerous professional and civic organizations. Among many other leadership roles, he has served on the Federal Home Loan Bank of Cincinnati board of directors as vice chair and on the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center board of trustees as chairman of the finance committee.