Putnam hires ESG leader from BofA

Jackie VanderBrug will help expand the company's sustainability efforts

Putnam Investments has hired a sustainable investment leader from Bank of America and Merrill Lynch for a new high-level role at the firm.

Jackie VanderBrug has been appointed Putnam’s head of sustainability strategy, reporting to CEO Robert Reynolds, the company announced today. Most recently, VanderBrug was head of sustainable and impact investment strategy in the chief investment office at Merrill and Bank of America Private Bank, a position she has held since 2018.

VanderBrug is on the company’s operating committee and “will lead a host of key ESG-focused business functions, such as stewardship, engagement and partnerships, and ESG strategy and integration,” Putnam stated. She will work alongside the company’s other sustainability-focused leaders: Katherine Collins, head of sustainable investing; and Catherine Saunders, head of corporate sustainability.

VanderBrug “will play an integral role in further expanding our firm’s focus in the critical realm of sustainability,” Reynolds added in the announcement. “At a time when ESG-related questions are rising in complexity and intensity, we are focused on further strengthening our investment-centric approach to these issues.”

Like other fund providers, Putnam has been expanding the ESG-themed products in its lineup.

This year, the firm has prepped or launched several ESG ETFs, and next year it plans to repackage its existing RetirementReady target-date series as the Putnam Sustainable Retirement Funds.