Harvard Business dean joins Blackstone board

Jay Light, former professor to Steve Schwarzman and a director of university endowment Harvard Management Company, has joined Blackstone’s board of directors. Separately, Blackstone has been named as an advisor in the $85bn bailout of AIG.

Harvard Business School (HBS) dean Jay Light has joined The Blackstone Group’s board of directors.

Light joined the faculty of HBS in 1970, since which time he has taught students in the MBA, doctoral and executive education programs. He was named dean in 2006 after being appointed acting dean the previous year.

His previous roles at HBS included chair of the finance unit, director of faculty planning and director of planning and development.

Light’s areas of expertise include the capital markets and institutional asset management, including the management of pension funds and endowments, as well as on the entrepreneurial management of technology companies.

His relationship with Blackstone chief executive Stephen Schwarzman date backs to 1970, when Schwarzman was a first-year student in Light’s decision theory class.

Light is also a director of the Harvard Management Company, which oversees the investment of the university's $35 billion  endowment.

On Blackstone’s board, Light is joining three other independent directors: Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette founder Richard Jenrette, former Canadian prime minister Brian Mulroney and former Deloitte & Touche senior partner William Parrett. 

Last month, Blackstone president and chief operating officer Tony James said the firm was in the “final stages” of closing its latest European real estate fund, Blackstone Real Estate Partners Europe III, on $3 billion. In April, the firm closed Blackstone Real Estate Partners VI on $10.9 billion – the largest amount ever raised for a dedicated real estate vehicle.

In separate news, Blackstone’s advisory group has won the role of advisor on the $85 billion rescue of insurer AIG by the US government.