Michael R. Eisenson

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Michael R. Eisenson
Alma materWilliams College
Yale University
OccupationPrivate equity investor
EmployerCharlesbank Capital Partners

Michael R. Eisenson is a managing director and co-chairman of Charlesbank Capital Partners, LLC, a private equity investment firm based in Boston and New York. Eisenson co-founded the firm in 1998 and served as its CEO until 2017.[citation needed] Charlesbank raised its most recent fund, Charlesbank Equity Fund IX, in 2017, with $2.75 billion of investor commitments.[1]

Early life[edit]

Eisenson earned a BA in economics summa cum laude from Williams College, where he now serves as chairman of the Board of Trustees, and a JD/MBA (1981) from Yale University.[2]


Eisenson previously managed certain assets of Harvard Management Company, where he worked from 1986 until the founding of Charlesbank, ultimately rising to managing director.[3][4] From 1986 to 1988, Eisenson worked with a branch of Harvard Management Company, Harvard Private Capital Group, Inc., which solely managed the investment portfolio of Harvard University.[5] Prior to his tenure at Harvard Management Company, Eisenson was with the management consulting firm, Boston Consulting Group.[6]

While at Harvard Management Company, Eisenson was the Harvard representative on the Board of Harken Energy when Harken purchased Spectrum VII, the oil company venture founded by George W. Bush.[7][8][9] Harvard ultimately made a small profit on the transaction.[10]

A private equity firm, Charlesbank focuses on leveraged buyouts involving middle-market companies, companies with enterprise values of between $150 million and $1.5 billion.[11] The firm has more than $5 billion in total assets. Charlesbank invests on behalf of pension funds, foundations, and endowments.[12] Eisenson has said that he knows he is not always investing in the most glamorous industries, but said, "What we’re looking for are businesses that are undervalued by other people. Our hope is to find the $20 bill that looks like $5 to other people." Eisenson has also said that he will not make money "off misery and poor people," by investing in things like collections agencies.[13]

The name of the firm, Charlesbank, refers both to the Charles River that flows through Boston as well as the firm's history and connection to Harvard University, situated on the Charles. When the company was Harvard Management Company, the group managed a portfolio only for Harvard. Today, the firm has offices in New York City as well as Boston.[14]

Personal life[edit]

Eisenson serves on the Board of Directors of Penske Auto Group and StoneCastle Partners. In 2017, he received the Myra H. Kraft Award for Non-Profit Leadership from the National Association for Corporate Directors. In 2011, he was recognized by the Outstanding Directors Exchange for his significant boardroom contributions.[15] Eisenson is a trustee of The Boston Foundation, chairman of the Board of Williams College,[16] trustee of the Dana–Farber Cancer Institute and Vice Chairman of the Board of Berklee College of Music.[17] He is also a founding director of Horizons for Homeless Children [18] and was the 2013 recipient of the James J. Pallotta Award, given by Big Brothers Big Sisters of Massachusetts Bay in recognition of his significant contributions to help at-risk children.[19]

Eisenson and his wife Barbara live in Boston and have four grown children.[20]

Eisenson has contributed to the political campaigns of Barack Obama, Martha Coakley, John Kerry, and Mitt Romney, among others.[21]

He enjoys skiing, travel, tennis, and music.[22]


  1. ^ Charlesbank racks up $2.75 bln for ninth fund, pehub.com, 24 October 2017
  2. ^ "Yale SOM Alumni Stories, October 25, 2010". Archived from the original on April 5, 2012. Retrieved October 12, 2011.
  3. ^ Strom, Stephanie. Harvard's Invisible Fund-Raising. New York Times, July 25, 2004.
  4. ^ Harvard's endowment fund cuts reliance on bonds International Herald Tribune, December 15, 2006
  5. ^ "Executive Profile Michael Richard Eisenson J.D." Bloomberg News. Retrieved 6 January 2015.
  6. ^ "Michael R. Eisenson - Berklee College of Music". Retrieved 20 November 2014.
  7. ^ Kranish, Michael. "Harvard fund poured millions into Bush-connected oil firm: Family connection raised as factor Archived 2007-10-28 at archive.today". The Boston Globe, July 18, 2002, p. A12
  8. ^ Harvard Stock Under Scrutiny The Harvard Crimson, July 19, 2002.
  9. ^ Conason, Joe. Did those "boutique" liberals bail out Bush? Archived 2008-03-07 at the Wayback Machine (Salon.com, July 11, 2002)
  10. ^ Harvard Investors Call Harken Deal Clean The Harvard Crimson, November 21, 2002
  11. ^ [1] Alumni Stories
  12. ^ [2] Archived 2016-02-07 at the Wayback Machine The Boston Foundation: Michael Eisenson
  13. ^ [3] Alumni Stories
  14. ^ "Charlesbank - OUR HISTORY". Retrieved 6 January 2015.
  15. ^ [4][permanent dead link] The ODX 2011 Outstanding Director Snapshot, 2011
  16. ^ Williams College Office of the President - Trustees Archived 2008-04-22 at the Wayback Machine
  17. ^ Berklee Board of Trustees
  18. ^ [5] Horizons for Homeless Children website
  19. ^ "Big Brothers Big Sisters of Massachusetts Bay Presents: Big Night 2013" http://www.bbbsmb.org/site/apps/nlnet/content2.aspx?c=9gKMJZMxF7LUG&b=8453301&ct=12747017&notoc=1 Archived 2014-10-20 at the Wayback Machine.
  20. ^ "Charlesbank" http://www.charlesbank.com/people/investment/michael-r-eisenson/.
  21. ^ "Michael R Eisenson" http://littlesis.org/person/3648/Michael_R_Eisenson.
  22. ^ "Michael R Eisenson" https://www.berklee.edu/people/michael-r-eisenson

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