Pasadena, Calif.-based Western Asset Management, the fixed income affiliate of Legg Mason Inc., has appointed three senior professionals to both broaden the firm’s lines of business and deepen its professional staff.
Louis DiFranco is head of insurance services, with responsibility for leading and expanding its insurance business, which manages $52 billion for insurance clients. He joins the company from BNY Mellon, where he worked for 11 years, most recently as an executive vice president responsible for the insurance, investment management and alternative-fund client practices. Prior to BNY Mellon, he worked with JP Morgan & Co. as the credit officer responsible for the insurance industry and at Deloitte & Touche as a senior auditor.
Powell Thurston is head of advisory services to formalize the company’s advisory business by building a dedicated effort to provide customized solutions for institutions in addressing complex issues related to fixed income instruments and derivatives. He ahs spent more than a decade at PIMCO, where he built the firm’s advisory business. Prior to that, he was responsible for building the CDO and structured products business lines. Prior to PIMCO, he was an economist focused on antitrust economics at Glass Oliver Economic Consultants. He began his investment management career in client relations at Vanguard.
Christopher Orndorff is a senior portfolio manager on the company’s generalist team, focusing on multi-sector and core/core full discretion portfolios. He will also be a member of the U.S. Broad Markets Committee, which is responsible for setting macroeconomic strategies across U.S. portfolios. He spent almost two decades at Payden & Rygel, where he was a managing principal and a member of the executive committee. Prior to Payden & Rygel, he was with the Northern Trust Co. 1985 to 1990.
James W. Hirschmann, CEO of Western Asset, commented, “Expanding our business with the insurance industry as a client segment is a top strategic priority for us.”