MADISON - July 20, 2018 Rick Smirl, executive director of the State of Wisconsin Investment Board, is resigning after six months on the job.

Smirl has accepted a job as chief operating officer at Russell Investments, effective Friday, the SWIB Board of Trustees announced.

“On behalf of the SWIB Board of Trustees, I want to thank Rick for his service and contributions to SWIB and wish him the best as he heads off to Russell Investments to pursue his new opportunity,” board chairman David Stein said.

Rochelle Klaskin, SWIB’s chief legal counsel and assistant director, will serve as acting executive director while the board conducts a search for Smirl’s successor.

Klaskin joined SWIB in 2015. She had been a shareholder at the Godfrey & Kahn law firm and served as the firm’s Madison office managing partner for five years.

SWIB manages more than $118 billion in assets, $107 billion of which consists of the Wisconsin Retirement System’s funds.

“Because SWIB has a reputation as a premier investment organization and the fact that Wisconsin has one of the best funded retirement systems in the country, we are confident that we can attract the best possible candidate to move SWIB forward,” Stein said.

The Wisconsin Retirement System is the ninth-largest public pension fund in the United States, serving more than 600,000 active and retired public employees.