Chief Operating Investment Officer

Michael Cohen was appointed chief operating investment officer in December, 2023, where he’s responsible for overseeing investment office administration, talent management, and culture. He brings more than 25 years of experience in government, with expertise in executive and financial leadership to his position. In this role, he serves as the Chief of Staff to the Chief Investment Officer. As a member of the executive leadership team, he also provides expert consultation and advice to the CalPERS Board.

He initially joined CalPERS as the chief financial officer in October 2018. In that capacity, he was responsible for managing all of CalPERS' financial processes, including budgeting, accounting, cash management, financial planning and analysis, and risk management projects. 

Prior to joining CalPERS, Michael served as director at the California Department of Finance, where he managed the state budget on behalf of Gov. Jerry Brown.

Earlier, he spent 13 years at the nonpartisan Legislative Analyst's Office providing advice to the Legislature on fiscal and policy issues. 

In August 2018 Gov. Jerry Brown appointed Michael to the University of California Board of Regents, the governing board of the University system, to a term through 2030.

Michael earned a master's degree in public affairs from the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas, and a bachelor's degree in urban studies from Stanford University.