John W. Rogers, Jr.
Chairman, CEO & Chief Investment Officer
Lead Portfolio Manager
Ariel Appreciation Fund, Ariel Small Cap Value, Ariel Small/Mid Cap Value and Ariel Mid Cap Value
John’s passion for investing began at age 12, when his father began buying him stocks as Christmas and birthday gifts. His interest in equities grew at Princeton University, where he majored in economics, and over the two-plus years he worked as a stockbroker for William Blair & Company, LLC. In 1983, John founded Ariel Investments to employ a patient, value strategy in small and medium-size companies. He strongly believes in giving back to Chicago, sitting on the corporate boards of Exelon and McDonald’s, and serving as trustee to the University of Chicago. Nationally, John is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences
, and a director of the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights. In 2008, he was awarded Princeton University’s highest honor, the Woodrow Wilson Award, presented each year to the alumnus whose career embodies a commitment to national service. Following the election of President Barack Obama, John served as co-chair for the Presidential Inaugural Committee 2009, and more recently, he joined the Barack Obama Foundation’s Board of Directors. In 2013, John was featured alongside legendary investors Warren Buffett, Sir John Templeton and Benjamin Graham in the distinguished book: The World’s 99 Greatest Investors
by Magnus Angenfelt. John received an AB in economics from Princeton University, where he was also captain of the varsity basketball team.
Mellody is responsible for firm-wide management and strategic planning, overseeing all operations outside of research and portfolio management. Additionally, she serves 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 contributes 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 is chairman of the board for DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc., as well as director of The Estée Lauder Companies Inc. and Starbucks Corporation. Her 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 a board member of The Chicago Public Education Fund, George Lucas Education Foundation, Lucas Museum of Narrative Art, and Sundance Institute, where she has been appointed emeritus trustee. She is also a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and serves on the executive committee of the Investment Company Institute’s board of governors. In 2015, Mellody was named to Time magazine’s annual list of the one hundred most influential people in the world. Mellody earned her AB from Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of International Relations and Public Policy. She has also received honorary doctorate degrees from Howard University, St. Mary’s College and the University of Southern California.
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