Our Voices

Action-packed RFK Compass Investors Conference draws to a close Wednesday

Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights’ three-day Compass Investors Summer Conference drew to a close Wednesday, another action-packed day, that included a fireside chat on navigating economic and political risks and featuring Saker Nusseibeh, CEO of Federated Hermes, and U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for Global Affairs, Beth Van Schaack.

“We face extraordinary challenges at this moment, Kennedy said as she introduced the panel. “A worldwide pandemic, economic displacement, possible worldwide recession, terrorism, global warming, and a technological revolution that can be used for good or evil, all this in the context of a world that’s teetering between Democracy and Autocracy.

“Yet, we know that all of those decisions are going to be made within that context. If autocracy wins, we’re finished. If democracy wins, we have a fighting chance for our generation, as well as our children and our grandchildren. And that, in a nutshell, is what the war in Ukraine is all about and why we need to do more than simply read and opine about the headlines.”

She called Van Schaack someone capable of holding Russian President Vladimir Putin accountable, handpicked by President Biden for that reason.

Guests also heard panels on the impact of interest rates and inflation on private equity.

“The companies that make it through are going to be the ones that manage their margins,” panelist Jeff Krasnoff, Chief Executive Officer at Rialto Capital Management said.

Wednesday afternoon also brought a keynote address from Yup S. Kim, head of investments at CalPERS Private Equity, and David Gurtz, deputy chief investment officer, Pension Reserves Investments Board of Massachusetts.

The conclusion of the conference also brought with it an opportunity for some fun – sailing with various members of the Kennedy family and a tour of the John F. Kennedy Museum in Hyannis Port, as well as a closing dinner.

This week’s event marked the first time Compass Investors have convened for a conference in person since 2019. Another fall conference is planned for Oct. 2-4 in Miami.