Calvert Funds founder John Guffey prepares to retire from board

Board adds two indies to replace retiring 41-year trustee Richard Baird and Guffey, a pioneer of responsible investing, who co-founded Calvert in 1976

The Calvert Funds have appointed two new independent trustees in anticipation of retirements by a pair of trustees who have held their seats since 1982.

The board appointed portfolio management specialists Karen Fang, 65, and Eddie Ramos, 56, to open-ended terms that began Oct. 30 as it prepares for the departures at the end of the year of Richard L. Baird, Jr. and John G. Guffey, Jr, who have both reached the board’s mandatory retirement age of 75.

Baird has served as a volunteer and then regional disaster recovery lead for the American Red Cross since 2015. He retired in 2014 as president and CEO of western-Pennsylvania women’s-health company Adagio Health Inc.

Guffey co-founded Calvert Group, Ltd. with impact-investing pioneer Wayne Silby in 1976. It grew into a $15bn mutual-fund company focused on socially responsible investing.

In 1982 the company launched the Calvert Social Investment Fund (CSIF) – which helped pioneer socially responsible investing by, among other choices, opposing investment in apartheid-era South Africa and championing re-investment after the country’s democratization in 1994.

Guffey retired from the company in 1987 to focus on non-profit organizations and socially responsible investing, but remained on the board throughout a history that saw the creation in 2000 of the Calvert Social Index to measure the performance of sustainable U.S.-based businesses, and the 1998 pursuit of a query to the U.S. Dept. of Labor that resulted in a statement confirming that the DoL considered sustainable investment options to be consistent with fiduciary standards for defined contribution plans.

In 2017 Calvert Investment Management was bought by Eaton Vance, which renamed it Calvert Research and Management. In 2021, Morgan Stanley bought Eaton Vance for $7bn.

In 1989 Guffey co-founded Calvert Impact Capital, a non-profit community development lender with more than $300m in assets on whose board he served until 2018, when he transitioned to become director emeritus of the company.

The company reports a total of $34.7bn under management as of Sept. 30, 2023, divided into a mix of mutual funds, ETFs, separately managed accounts and other products.

Since 1997 Guffey has been president of Santa Fe, N.M.-based alternative-medicine and metaphysics publisher Aurora Press, Inc.

New trustee Karen Fang has worked in investment management, capital markets and derivatives for more than 30 years, most recently as managing director of Gamco Asset Management, Inc., though she spent most of her career at Fiduciary Trust Company International, which she left as managing director in 2019.

Ramos is a specialist in ESG-driven and social-impact investing with experience in mutual-fund investment management at companies including Franklin Templeton Investments and Morgan Stanley Investment Management. He served as head of external advisors/diversity portfolio management for the New Jersey Division of Investment and was CIO and lead portfolio manager for the global fundamental equities at Cornerstone Capital Management. He sits on the board of Macquarie Optimum Funds, the Latino Corporate Directors Association, and the board of Lehigh University.

The departures of Guffey and Baird will return the size of the board from its current 10 members to its usual eight – seven independent trustees plus interested director Theodore H. Eliopoulos, 59, president and CEO of Calvert Research and management, who has held a seat on the board since he was hired in 2022.

The other independent trustees include Alice Gresham Bullock, 73, Cari M. Dominguez, 74, Miles D. Harper, III, 61, Joy V. Jones, 73, and Anthony A. Williams, 72.

During the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, 2022, total compensation ranged between $245,117 and $275,885 for trustees responsible for oversight of 43 funds.

Compensation levels were increased after Jan. 1 for the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, 2023. Independent directors now receive an annual fee of $214,000 plus an annual committee fee of between $8,500 and $16,500, with additional payments of $15,000 for committee chairs, $40,000 for the board chair.

The board maintains two committees – an audit committee that includes all independent trustees, and a governance committee whose functions include those of a nominating committee and takes primary responsibility for communications between the board and shareholders. The audit committee met eight times during fiscal 2022; the governance committee met four times. The funds’ chief compliance officer is Hope. L. Brown, 50, who has served in that role since 2014.

Karen Fang

• Managing director, Gamco Asset Management, 2020 – 2023
• Managing director, Fiduciary Trust Company International 1993 – 2019

Eddie Ramos

• Private investor, 2014 – 2018
• Head of external advisors/diversity portfolio management, New Jersey Division of Investment, 2020 – 2022
• Chief investment officer, lead portfolio manager, Cornerstone Capital Management 2011 – 2017
• Lead portfolio manager, global & intnl. equities, Morgan Stanley Investment Mgmt. 2005 – 2010
• Lead portfolio manager, intnl. equities, Brown Capital Management 1998 – 2005
• Portfolio mgr/research analyst, Franklin Templeton Investments, 1993 – 1998