A $10B Fund Firm's Co-Founder Will Retire Soon
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Monday, September 30, 2019

A $10B Fund Firm's Co-Founder Will Retire Soon

A 26-year-old alternative asset manager's co-founder is passing the reins and preparing to retire.

Mark Kiyoshi Okada
Highland Capital Management, L.P.
Mark Okada, co-founder and co-chief investment officer at Dallas-based Highland Capital Management, L.P. will retire from his full time position at the end of 2019. As part of the transition, he has taken on a senior advisory role until the end of the year. And Okada will keep his ownership stake in Highland Capital after he retires.

After Okada's retirement, Highland president James Dondero will take over Okada's responsibilities as co-CIO. Okada and Dondero founded Highland Capital in 1993 with about $750 million in assets. Now the firm manages $10 billion and has 125 employees.

"While all major responsibilities have been transitioned to the appropriate individuals and teams, Mark [Okada] will stay on through the end of the year to identify and support any remaining transition activities," states Lucy Bannon, a Highland spokeswoman.

Okada's move comes five months after the promotion of Joe Sowin to co-CIO, alongside Okada.

"We are grateful to Mark for his service, his performance, his leadership, and his personality," Dondero stated. "Over our 30-year partnership, we built a lasting business that has been tested by multiple credit cycles. Mark helped shape Highland and position the firm for future growth."

In addition to his work at Highland, Okada is on the board of directors at NexBank Capital, Inc. and currently serves as the chairman of the board of directors at Education is Freedom. Prior to founding Highland, Okada was manager of fixed income at Protective Life. He earned his B.A. in economics and psychology at the University of California, Los Angeles.

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