Michael Larson, Bill Gates’ money manager, has been accused of workplace misconduct, including reportedly engaging in bullying and sexual harassment. 

On Wednesday, The New York Times published a report saying that Larson’s alleged inappropriate conduct was brought to Gates’ attention by at least six people. Despite those complaints, Larson, 61, continued to manage Gates’ wealth, The Times reported.

Here’s what you need to know about Larson.

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Larson runs Cascade Investment

Gates’ money-management firm, Cascade Investment, is run by Larson himself, according to The Times. The firm reportedly manages both Gates’ personal wealth and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation endowment.

According to the newspaper, Larson has been managing Gates’ money for almost three decades and has grown Gates’ wealth to almost $130 billion, up from less than $10 billion. 

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FOX Business previously reported that Bill and Melinda Gates hired Larson in 1994 to help them diversify their personal assets. 

Those investments included a stake in AutoNation, the Charles Hotel in Cambridge, Mass., the Four Seasons in San Francisco and upward of 100,000 acres of farmland in various states, according to Land Report, citing a 2014 profile of Larson in The Wall Street Journal

Michael Larson, chief investment officer of Cascade Investment LLC, in 2016. He has managed Bill Gates’ money for 27 years and was recently accused of workplace misconduct. (David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

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He’s been accused of workplace misconduct

According to The Times, Larson has "engaged in a pattern of workplace misconduct" and has created a culture of fear at Cascade.

Former Cascade employees told The Times that Larson made racist and sexist comments, bullied employees, and retaliated against workers when they left the company.

Larson also reportedly shared photos of nude women on his phone with other employees and compared those images to the head of the firm’s human resources department and allegedly asked a female employee if she would strip for money. 

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According to The Times, at least seven people received payments from Cascade regarding Larson’s behavior, as long as they agreed not to speak about the incidents. 

The newspaper also reported that at least six people complained directly to Gates about Larson’s behavior. 

One accusation of sexual harassment was investigated by an outside firm after Larson allegedly harassed an employee of a bike shop. However, during the investigation, Larson was given paid leave and was able to return to his role, The Times reported.

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According to The Times, Larson and his spokesperson, Chris Giglio, denied some of the accusations made against him. 

"During his tenure, Mr. Larson has managed over 380 people, and there have been fewer than five complaints related to him in total," Giglio told The Times. 

"Any complaint was investigated and treated seriously and fully examined, and none merited Mr. Larson’s dismissal," Giglio added.

He has an MBA from the University of Chicago

According to a 1999 report by Fortune Magazine, Larson graduated from Claremont McKenna College with an economics degree after just three years. He then graduated from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business with an MBA when he was just 21.

Source Link:
https://www.foxbusiness.com/markets/what-to-know-michael-larson

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