Patricia (Pat) Cloherty is an American businesswoman, company director, and private equity financier. She was the chairman and CEO of Delta Private Equity Partners. Cloherty served as manager of the U.S. Russia Investment Fund and Delta Russia Fund, two venture capital funds which operated in Russia. In 2004, Cloherty was named Businessperson of the Year by the American Chamber of Commerce in Russia. In 2007, Crain's New York Business named her one of the Most Powerful Women in New York. In 2008, Cloherty received the Order of Friendship from Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Cloherty earned a bachelor's degree in 1963 from the San Francisco College for Women (now part of the University of San Francisco) and two master's degrees from Columbia University. After graduation, Cloherty spent two years in Brazil from 1963 through 1965 as a member of the newly created Peace Corps.
Cloherty began her career in venture capital at Patricof & Co. Ventures, which she joined in 1969. She was named a partner and later would become president and co-chair of the firm, along with founder Alan Patricof. After she left the firm, Patricof & Co. (now known as Apax Partners), became one of the largest private equity firms globally. In an interview with "Private Equity International" magazine, Cloherty stated that her track record in Russia included 14 write-offs and a return of 1.2 times capital invested.
After she left the firm to start 53rd Street Ventures, she was associated with the INSLAW affair of which she was a major shareholder. In 1977, Cloherty was appointed Deputy Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration by President Jimmy Carter. In 1979, she founded and ran Tessler & Cloherty with her husband Daniel Tessler, which specialized in small businesses. In 1991, U.S. President George H.W. Bush appointed Ms. Cloherty as chairman of an Investment Advisory Council to revamp the Small Business Investment Company program of the U.S. Small Business Administration.
In 1995 President Clinton appointed Cloherty as a board member of the U.S. Russia Investment Fund with $440 million of investment capital. In 1998 she assumed the role of chairman, and in 2004 she became chairman and chief executive officer of the US Russia Investment Fund's general partner: Delta Private Equity Partners. The funds made direct equity investments in Russian companies in the financial services sector, consumer-related industries, and in the media, telecommunications, semiconductor and biotechnology fields.
On 17 March 2008 Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree awarding Cloherty the Order of Friendship for her contribution to the development of Russian business and for strengthening friendship and cooperation between the Russian Federation and the United States of America.
In April 2009, Private Equity International magazine reported that Delta Private Equity Partners was collaborating with UFG Private Equity, one of its limited partners, and was considering a merger with them.
Ms. Cloherty was a director of NYSE Euronext. She is a trustee of International House of New York, Teachers College, Columbia University and the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Cloherty is a former president and chairman of the National Venture Capital Association, the national advocacy group for venture capital firms in the U.S. Cloherty served on the board of directors of Accion International from 1982 to 1986.
- Crain's Most Powerful Women in New York 2007: Patricia Cloherty, Delta Private Equity Partners by Judith Messina (Crain's New York Business, 16 September 2007)
- Promoting the Development of Entrepreneurship in Russia by Маya Berdnikova (Vedomosti, 28 April 2008 - reprinted by the Center for Entrepreneurship)
- Patricia M. Cloherty spent two years in Brazil as a Peace Corps volunteer advising youths living on small farms (PeaceCorpOnline.org, Winter 2000/01)
- Profile: Patricia Cloherty (Bloomberg Businessweek)
- Business People; Venture Capitalist Back, But She Is Nearer to Top by Alison Leigh Cowan (New York Times, 29 February 1988)
- Porcelain And Portals by Kerry A. Dolan (Forbes, 16 April 2001)
- Moscow Mission by Judy Kuan (Private Equity International, January 2006 - Issue 41).
- 2007 Forbes Midas List: #63 Patricia Cloherty
- Russian private equity firms may merge by Toby Mitchenall (Private Equity International, 21 April 2009)
- NYSE Euronext - Board Committees
- International House website