Women Leaders

Maribeth S. Rahe, Fort Washington Investment Advisors, Inc.

Maribeth S. Rahe

Built on Performance

Editors’ Note

Prior to joining Fort Washington, Maribeth Rahe was President and a board member of the United States Trust Company of New York. Additionally, she has served as Vice Chair of the board of The Harris Bank in Chicago and has held various positions at JPMorgan in London and New York. A native of Chicago, Rahe is a graduate of Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio, where she recently received an honorary Ph.D. in Business. She was also a Ph.D. candidate at The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio, and earned her Master of Business Administration in International Management with honors from Thunderbird School of Global Management in Glendale, Arizona.

Company Brief

With a heritage dating to 1888, Western & Southern Financial Group (westernsouthern.com) is a Cincinnati-based Fortune 500 diversified family of financial services companies. Western & Southern maintains very strong financial strength ratings from independent rating agencies.

When you look at the heritage and history of Fort Washington Investment Advisors, how has the business evolved?

Fort Washington was created as an SEC-registered investment advisor in 1990. Prior to that, it was the investment management division of parent company Western & Southern Financial Group. It managed money for Western & Southern and its affiliates. When our current Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer took the helm, he spun out the investment management division into a separate company to create Fort Washington Investment Advisors.

The purpose was to ensure that what we did, we did well. He knew if we were able to create a firm to manage money for third-party clients as well as the parent company and its affiliates, and be competitive, we would have better investment results for the parent company and its affiliates. That was the whole intent, and here we are 26 years later. It has worked.

What is the scope of the company today?

Fort Washington has over $46 billion of assets under management. Today, we are now not only strong locally but we are one of the largest money managers in the region. Over 50 percent of our clients are now national, and we now have international clients as well. We manage over $11 billion for third parties.

How hard is it to differentiate in this field?

We built this firm based on what we believe are our competencies, and we are always trying to build extensions of what we do well; we are not trying to be all things to all people. We also try to pick investment strategies that are distinguished and differentiated because there is no shortage of competition in the world of investment management, and performance is key.

Western & Southern has been the initial investor in most of Fort Washington’s strategies. Once we build a track record in a new strategy for three years, we often take those strategies to our third-party clients. That is how we have built the business over the years.

What are the advantages of being based in Cincinnati?

I’ve always worked in big money centers, and I’ll admit I was worried about coming to Cincinnati because of recruiting of talent but I’ve been pleasantly surprised.

One of the great things about Cincinnati is that people move here or live here because they want to. We are still home to many major multinational corporations, which attract talent, and we are always looking to recruit great talent.