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Institutional Client & Investor Relations
Mellody Hobson

Mellody Hobson

Co-CEO & President
As Co-CEO, Mellody is responsible for all firm-wide management, including strategic planning and growth as well as every aspect of Ariel’s business beyond research and portfolio management. Prior to her formal appointment to Co-CEO, Mellody served as Ariel’s President for nearly two decades and functions as chairman of the board of trustees for Ariel Investment Trust. Beyond her work at Ariel, Mellody has become a nationally recognized voice on financial literacy and investor education. She is a regular contributor and analyst on finance, the markets and economic trends for CBS News. She also extends weekly money tips on the Tom Joyner Morning Show and pens a column for Black Enterprise magazine. As a passionate advocate for investor education, she is a spokesperson for the Ariel/Hewitt Study: 401(k) Plans in Living Color and the Ariel Black Investor Survey, both of which examine investing patterns among minorities. Mellody’s leadership has not only been invaluable to Ariel but to corporate boardrooms as well. Specifically, she is vice chair of the Board of Starbucks Corporation, a director of JPMorgan Chase, and a director of Quibi, a short-form video content company. Previously, she was a long-standing board member of the Estée Lauder Companies and also held the position of Chairman of the Board of DreamWorks Animation until which time she facilitated its sale to Comcast. Mellody’s community outreach includes serving as chairman of After School Matters, a non-profit that provides Chicago teens with high-quality, out-of-school time programs. She is vice chair of World Business Chicago’s board of directors, co-chair of the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art, a board member of the George Lucas Education Foundation and LACMA, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. She is also a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, The Rockefeller Foundation Board of Trustees, and serves on the executive committee of the Investment Company Institute’s board of governors. Mellody earned her AB from Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of International Relations and Public Policy. In 2019, Mellody was awarded Princeton’s highest honor, the Woodrow Wilson Award, presented each year to the alumnus or alumna whose career embodies a commitment to national service. She has also received honorary doctorate degrees from Howard University, St. Mary’s College, University of Southern California and Johns Hopkins University.
   
Natalie Baker

Natalie Baker

Vice President, Senior Investment Writer
Natalie functions as Ariel’s dedicated writer and is charged with maintaining the firm’s voice consistently throughout all marketing and related materials. Prior to joining, Natalie served as an investment writer at Breckinridge Capital Advisors. She started her career as a sell-side fixed income analyst before transitioning to financial journalism and investment writing. Natalie holds a BA in Economics and a certificate in cognitive studies from Princeton University. She obtained an MBA in International Business and Econometrics from the University of Chicago. Beyond Ariel, Natalie is secretary of the board for the Princeton Association of New England and a council member for the Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra.
M. Andrew Barnes

M. Andrew Barnes

Senior Manager, Institutional Marketing
Andrew joined Ariel in 2017 to focus on institutional business development and client services with a special focus on financial intermediaries. Prior to joining Ariel, Andrew spent more than twelve years in private credit and investment banking, including roles at Barings Asset Management, Madison Capital Funding, a subsidiary of New York Life Insurance Company, and TCF Capital Funding, a subsidiary of TCF Financial. Andrew received his BSBA from the University of Denver.
Jennifer DiGrazia

Jennifer DiGrazia

Senior Vice President, Head of Institutional Client & Investor Relations
Jenn serves as head of Ariel’s Institutional Client and Investor Relations group, which handles all aspects of client communications, reporting and onboarding, as well as board reports, marketing materials and press relations. In addition to serving as a client liaison for our institutional portfolios, Jenn is a member of Ariel’s investment committee and works closely with our portfolio managers on client relationships. Jenn rejoined the firm in 2019, after serving as Head of Investor Relations for DreamWorks Animation and subsequently MGM Studios. In these roles, Jenn developed relationships with key stakeholders in the investment community, including institutional investors, portfolio managers and investment research analysts. She was also responsible for articulating the companies’ strategic priorities while fostering confidence and credibility among the investment community. Before DreamWorks, Jenn held senior positions at DIRECTV and various roles in Corporate Finance and Strategic Planning at Time Warner Cable and MTV Networks. Beyond Ariel, Jenn serves on the Board of Directors for Communities In Schools Los Angeles and the Los Angeles chapter of the National Investor Relations Institute. Jenn graduated summa cum laude with a BS in Business Administration from the University of Connecticut.
Martin C. Gawne

Martin C. Gawne

Vice President, External Communications
Martin is responsible for managing public and media relations for Ariel’s domestic and global investment teams and executive leadership. In this capacity, he creates awareness for Ariel’s deep investment expertise and capabilities. He also supports internal and external marketing communications and brand initiatives. He joined Ariel with more than three decades of experience in the asset management industry. His prior experience includes senior positions with Adams Street Partners, Aviva Investors Americas, and William Blair & Company, where he was the first Marketing Director for the William Blair Funds. Martin started his career as a financial reporter for Knight-Ridder Financial News and is a graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a BS in Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences.
Valerie King

Valerie King

Senior Vice President, Investor Relations

Valerie joined Ariel in 2018 and focuses on institutional business development and client services. Previously, she spent 17 years as director of sales and marketing for Holland Capital Management. Prior to that, Valerie was vice president of marketing for T. Rowe Price Group, Inc. Outside of Ariel, Valerie is a member of the Illinois Arts Council Board, the Chicago Urban League, Chicago United’s Leaders Council, and the Steering Committee for the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago’s Financial Services Pipeline. Valerie earned a Bachelor in Architecture from the Illinois Institute of Technology and an MBA from Clark Atlanta University.
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Malik T. Murray

Senior Vice President, Institutional Marketing

Malik joined Ariel in 2004 and focuses on institutional business development and client services. Previously, he spent eight years with Bank One Brokerage, most recently serving as the lead broker on the European shift for its international exchange-traded products group. Outside of Ariel, Malik is a member of the board of trustees of St. Ignatius College Prep and serves on the school board of Ariel Community Academy. He is also a director for the National Association of Securities Professionals (NASP), the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce and a member of the DePaul University Department of Finance Advisory Board.
Bonnie E. Orlowski

Bonnie E. Orlowski, CAIA

Senior Vice President, Head of Consultant Relations & Financial Intermediaries
Bonnie is responsible for institutional business development and client services with a special focus on investment consultants and financial intermediaries. She joined Ariel in 2016 after spending eighteen years with AllianceBernstein L.P., most recently as senior vice president and head of North America consultant relations. In this capacity, Bonnie cultivated relationships with key global consulting firms. Prior to that, she held various roles including global business development, vice president of public fund marketing, and client service. Beyond Ariel, Bonnie is chair of the investment committee of The New York Junior League. Bonnie graduated from Bucknell University with a BA in international relations. She is also a CAIA Charter Holder.
Patrice Bailey

Patrice L. Scelzo

Vice President, Institutional Client & Investor Relations
Patrice plays an integral role on our institutional client service team. Her primary responsibilities include overseeing reporting and presentation materials as well as responding to day-to-day client and third party requests. Prior to joining the firm in 1999, she worked as a quality service assistant for Northwest Airlines. Patrice is an associate board member of Gilda's Club Chicago and earned a BA in international business-Spanish intensive from the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota.
Melissa Smith

Melissa Smith

Vice President, Consultant Relations
Melissa is responsible for cultivating and managing Ariel’s consultant relationships. Prior to joining the firm, Melissa was vice president of consultant relations for Deutsche Bank. In this capacity, she managed business development and client services for investment consultants. Previously, she was associate director of consultant relations for Calamos Investments. Beyond Ariel, Melissa is a member of several professional organizations including the Association of Investment Management Sales Executives, Women Investment Professionals, and 100 Women in Hedge Funds. Melissa earned her BA in finance from Illinois State University.
Ian M. Webber

Ian M. Webber

Senior Vice President, Head of Asia Pacific & MENA
Ian joined Ariel Investments in March 2015 and is responsible for institutional business development and client services for the Asia Pacific, Middle East and North African regions. He has more than 20 years of experience in the funds management industry, having worked at firms such as J.P. Morgan Investment Management, Salomon Smith Barney/Citigroup Asset Management and AXA Rosenberg. Prior to joining Ariel, Ian held the title of country head and director of sales, Asia Pacific for Artio Global Investors (formerly Julius Baer Asset Management in the United States). Ian spent the first 10 years of his career initially as a financial market economist at Westpac Banking Corporation, and then as an economist and asset consultant for Ipac Securities. He has a Bachelor of Economics from the University of Newcastle, where he majored in economics and econometrics, and he has a Postgraduate Diploma in applied finance and investments from the Securities Institute of Australia.
Amy Yong

Amy Yong

Vice President, Institutional Marketing
Amy joined Ariel in 2019 to focus on institutional business development and client services and will be based in our New York office. Prior to joining Ariel, Amy spent more than 11 years with Macquarie Capital (USA) on the company’s sell side equity research team, covering the telecom services, media and technology stocks, and where she was named a “Rising Star” by Institutional Investor magazine three years in a row. Fluent in Mandarin Chinese, her experience at Macquarie began as a research analyst on Chinese telecommunications, media and technology stocks. Previously she held equity research positions at Caylon Securities and Merrill Lynch. Amy earned a BA in economics with an international relations concentration from Cornell University, where she is also a mentor for the Society of Women in Business and co-chair of Cornell Alumni Events. Additionally, Amy is a graduate of the Aaron Copland School of Music, with 15 years of classical piano experience.
 
 
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