Colorado selects new director of real estate

The $42 billion pension has promoted senior portfolio manager C.H. Meili to the top post in its real estate department.

The Colorado Public Employees’ Retirement Association (PERA) has named C.H. Meili as director of real estate investments. He reports to chief investment officer Jennifer Paquette and succeeds Jim Lavan, who is retiring after more than 10 years at the pension plan.

Meili will manage a team of four and be in charge of PERA’s real estate portfolio, which was valued at $3.15 billion, or 7.92 percent of the pension’s total assets, as of June 30. PERA’s real estate investments primarily are focused on producing stable income and the opportunity for capital appreciation for the pension plan.

The real estate portfolio includes both core assets in markets that have recovered and non-core assets that are in the early stages of a rebound, with a 40 percent target allocation to core. As of June 30, about one-third of the real estate portfolio was invested in apartments, while office, industrial, retail, hotel and other types of commercial real estate accounted for the remainder.

Meili joined PERA in 2006 and most recently served as senior real estate portfolio manager. Prior to joining the pension plan, he worked from 1999 to 2004 for BetaWest, the asset manager for investment firm DLJ Real Estate Capital Partners, in Denver. No decision has yet been made on filling the now-vacant senior real estate portfolio manager positiion.