NHRS Director of Investments Announces Planned Retirement

Larry Johansen to step down in August 2022

Jan 07, 2022
  • NHRS

For Immediate Release: January 7, 2022
Contact: Marty Karlon, Director of Communications & Legislative Affairs, (603) 410-3594; public_relations@nhrs.org

CONCORD, NH – Larry Johansen, the Director of Investments for the New Hampshire Retirement System (NHRS, the retirement system), has announced plans to retire on September 1 after more than 12 years at NHRS.

As Director of Investments, Johansen is responsible for providing expert investment counsel to the Board of Trustees and Independent Investment Committee (IIC).  He serves as the primary staff liaison on investment matters and directs all aspects of the retirement system’s investments. In his time at NHRS, Johansen oversaw an investment program that consistently ranked in the top quartile of peer public pension funds. 

“Larry’s skill and expertise helped grow the investment portfolio to the benefit of all of our members and retirees,” said Maureen Kelliher, chair of the IIC. “Most importantly, he leaves NHRS in a good position to sustain its investment performance.”

The retirement system realized a 29.4% return on investments in the fiscal year ended June 30, 2021. The three-year, five-year, 10-year, 20-year, and 25-year returns for the periods ended June 30, 2021, were 11.4%, 11.3%, 9.3%, 7.2%, and 7.9%, respectively.  All returns are net of fees. The retirement system’s assumed rate of investment return is 6.75%. 

“We are grateful for Larry’s dedication to the retirement system,” said Tim Lesko, chair of the NHRS Board and a member of the IIC. “His experience and leadership skills have contributed to the growth and diversification of the fund, with a focus on maximizing investment returns while minimizing risk.”

During Johansen’s tenure as Director of Investments, NHRS trust fund assets grew from $4.9 billion on June 30, 2010, to $11.6 billion as of June 30, 2021.

 “Any credit for the retirement system’s investment performance resides with more than any one single individual,” Johansen said. “The Independent Investment Committee (IIC), internal staff, and our investment consultant, Callan, all play a key role in the performance of the investment program, as does the Board of Trustees, which, with input from the IIC, sets the investment policy and hires the investment consultant.”

Johansen has been the NHRS Director of Investments since January 2010, coming to NHRS from the New York State Teachers’ Retirement System (NYSTRS), one of the largest public retirement systems in the country, where he served in senior level investment and actuarial positions.

Johansen holds numerous actuarial credentials and a degree in mathematics and economics from the State University of New York at Buffalo.  He has been a member of the Pension Task Force of the Governmental Accounting and Standards Board, served in multiple leadership roles, including president, for the American Academy of Actuaries, and served on the board of the Conference of Consulting Actuaries.

The NHRS Board of Trustees and IIC will initiate a nationwide search for Johansen’s replacement.

About NHRS

NHRS provides retirement, disability, and death benefits to its eligible members and their beneficiaries.  The State of New Hampshire and more than 460 local government employers participate in NHRS for their employees, teachers, firefighters, and police officers.  NHRS has approximately 48,500 active members and 41,000 benefit recipients. NHRS administers a defined benefit plan qualified as a tax-exempt entity under sections 401(a) and 501(a) of the Internal Revenue Code. 

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