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The endowment guru

David Swensen, who runs Yale University's US$25.4b investment fund, is one of the US's most influential money managers.

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LEGENDARY PIONEER: Mr Swensen with Mr Takahashi at Yale's campus in New Haven, Connecticut. For decades, Mr Swensen has convened his staff, including his cadre of apprentices, for weekly meetings to debate investment ideas in a forum that has served as a crucible for money managers now scattered through the US non-profit world.

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SHOW OF ESTEEM: A portrait of Mr Swensen (left) hanging in a residence recently renamed in his honour (right) at Yale University. For the fiscal year ended June 30 - when the average endowment fell 2.7 per cent, according to Cambridge Associates - Yale's rose 3.4 per cent.

AS he has done for decades, once a week David Swensen convenes his staff - including his cadre of apprentices - for a morning-long meet-ing among the Gothic revival flourishes and crenelations of the Yale University campus to debate investment ideas.

Mr Swensen, 62, runs the school's US$

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