Who We Are

Churchill Asset Management combines a team of highly experienced investment professionals with a strong track record and TIAA’s best-in-class institutional infrastructure to deliver flexible, reliable financing solutions that meet the needs of middle market private equity sponsors and their portfolio companies.


Deep experience in middle market lending with an established senior management team averaging over 25 years of investment experience

Churchill Asset Management executives have an average of 25 years of experience in financing middle market companies. As a team, we focus exclusively on originating, underwriting, and monitoring investments.

Senior Management Team

Ken Kencel

Ken Kencel

President & CEO

212.478.9201 // ken.kencel@churchillam.com

Kenneth J. Kencel serves as President and CEO of Churchill Asset Management. Throughout his over 30-year career Mr. Kencel has a broad range of experience in leading middle market financing businesses. Previously, he was a Managing Director of The Carlyle Group and President and a Director of Carlyle GMS Finance, Inc. and NF Investment Corp. (Carlyle’s two privately-traded business development companies); founded and was President and CEO of Churchill Financial; and served as Head of Leveraged Finance for Royal Bank of Canada as well as Head of Indosuez Capital—a middle market merchant banking and asset management business. Mr. Kencel also helped to found high yield finance businesses at both Chase Securities (now JP Morgan) and SBC Warburg (now UBS). He began his career in the Mergers & Acquisitions Group of Drexel Burnham Lambert.

Mr. Kencel serves on the Board of Advisors and is an Adjunct Professor at the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University. He earned his B.S. in Business Administration, magna cum laude, from Georgetown University and his J.D. from Northwestern University School of Law.

George Kurteson

George Kurteson

Senior Managing Director, Head of Underwriting & Portfolio Management

212.478.9204 // george.kurteson@churchillam.com

 

Overseeing underwriting and portfolio management at Churchill Asset Management, Senior Managing Director George F. Kurteson brings over 30 years of middle market leveraged lending experience to the company. Prior to founding Churchill Asset Management, Mr. Kurteson served as a Managing Director of Carlyle GMS Finance and as a Founder and Senior Managing Director, Head of Origination and Underwriting at Churchill Financial. At GE/Antares (a division of GE Capital), he held the position of Senior Managing Director, Head of the New York office, and he acted as a member of the GE/Antares leadership team. Mr. Kurteson has also served in senior positions at Heller Financial, Fleet Bank, and Maryland National Bank.

Mr. Kurteson received his MBA and his B.S. (honors) in business and economics from Lehigh University.

Randy Schwimmer

Randy Schwimmer

Senior Managing Director, Head of Origination & Capital Markets

212.478.9203 // randy.schwimmer@churchillam.com

 

Senior Managing Director Randy Schwimmer supervises origination and capital markets for Churchill Asset Management. He is widely credited with developing loan syndications for middle market companies. Mr. Schwimmer brings 30 years of experience in middle market finance to Churchill Asset Management, having served as a Senior Managing Director and Head of Capital Markets and Indirect Origination at Churchill Financial. In those positions, he took responsibility for all loan capital markets activities and for managing the firm’s indirect origination platform. Before then, Mr. Schwimmer worked as Managing Director and Head of Leveraged Finance syndication for BNP Paribas. He spent 15 years at JP Morgan Chase in Corporate Banking and Loan Syndications, where he originated, structured, and syndicated leveraged loans.

Mr. Schwimmer graduated cum laude from Trinity College with a B.A. He earned his M.A. from the University of Chicago.

Christopher Cox

Christopher Cox

Senior Managing Director & Chief Risk Officer

212.478.9212 // chris.cox@churchillam.com

Senior Managing Director Christopher Cox serves as Chief Risk Officer of Churchill Asset Management. Previously, he was a Principal of Carlyle GMS Finance and was a Managing Director and Chief Risk Officer for Churchill Financial, which he joined in 2006. In this role, he was responsible for overseeing the company’s risk management infrastructure, including all risk management process and policies. Prior to this, Mr. Cox was a Senior Vice President at GE Commercial Finance (a division of GE Capital) from 1997 to 2006, where he held various risk management roles within the corporate lending group, focusing on middle market transactions. Mr. Cox also worked at Gibbs & Cox, Inc. in New York, NY. Mr.

Cox received his B.S. in civil engineering from Tufts University and his MBA from Fordham University.

David Heilbrunn

David Heilbrunn

Senior Managing Director, Head of Product Development & Capital Raising

212.478.9281 // david.heilbrunn@churchillam.com

David Heilbrunn is a Senior Managing Director of Churchill Asset Management. As the firm’s Head of Product Development & Capital Raising, Mr. Heilbrunn focuses on capital raising activities and strategic initiatives, structuring new products and developing important institutional client relationships. Mr. Heilbrunn also focuses on optimizing the firm’s various financing arrangements and oversees Churchill’s collateralized loan obligation (CLO) platform. Prior to joining the Churchill team in 2017, Mr. Heilbrunn held senior roles at several firms, including Managing Director at Fifth Street Asset Management; Managing Director of The Carlyle Group; Senior Managing Director and Head of Corporate Strategy & Development at Churchill Financial and Managing Director and CDO Group Head at Bear Stearns & Co. and JP Morgan.

Mr. Heilbrunn received an M.B.A., with Distinction, from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan Business School and a B.S. in accounting, magna cum laude, from The State University of New York at Albany in 1987.

Alastair Merrick

Alastair Merrick

Chief Financial Officer & Chief Administrative Officer

212.478.9202 // alastair.merrick@churchillam.com

 

Alastair Merrick serves as Chief Financial Officer & Chief Administrative Officer of Churchill Asset Management. Mr. Merrick brings over 35 years of financial experience to the company. Previously, he was Chief Financial Officer for WhiteHorse Finance, a publicly traded BDC managed by HIG Capital; served as Chief Financial Officer & Chief Administrative Officer for Churchill Financial, where he was a founding member; and worked as Chief Financial Officer for E*TRADE Bank. Before then, he spent 16 years at IBJ Whitehall Financial Group, eventually serving as Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer, and Director of Operations. Mr. Merrick began his career at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP.

Mr. Merrick is a Certified Public Accountant. He received a B.A. in economics from the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom.

TIAA Private Markets

Brian Roelke

Brian Roelke

Managing Director, Head of TIAA Private Capital

Brian Roelke is a Managing Director and Head of TIAA Private Capital. In this capacity he sits on the private markets investment committee and leads a group of investment professionals responsible for originating investment transactions in private asset classes including debt private placements, project finance, credit tenant loans, private ABS, senior leveraged loans, mezzanine, and private equity funds and co-investments. In addition to serving on Churchill Asset Management’s board of directors, he is on the firm’s investment committee.

He previously served as Head of the Debt Private Placements team, and in a number of different positions throughout TIAA’s investment organization. Mr. Roelke has over 20 years of industry experience and joined the TIAA organization in 2002.

Mr. Roelke earned a B.A. in history and economics from Colgate University and an M.B.A. in finance and accounting from New York University, where he was a Stern Scholar, was awarded a Stern Fellowship, and was a member of Beta Gamma Sigma, the international business honor society.

Shai Vichness, CFA

Shai Vichness, CFA

Managing Director, Head of Senior Leveraged Lending, TIAA Investments

Shai Vichness is a Managing Director and Head of Senior Leveraged Lending for TIAA Investment’s private markets team. Mr. Vichness also serves as the Portfolio Manager for middle market loans for TIAA and is a member of Churchill Asset Management’s investment committee. He was previously a member of the distressed investments team, responsible for workouts and direct distressed investments, as well as secondary fixed income and equity trading. Mr. Vichness joined TIAA Global Asset Management in 2005 and has over 10 years of investment experience across multiple asset classes.

Mr. Vichness holds a BBA from Baruch College, CUNY. He is a CFA charterholder and a member of the CFA Institute and the New York Society of Security Analysts (NYSSA).


Churchill Asset Management is a registered investment adviser and majority-owned, indirect subsidiary of Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association of America.

Investment, insurance and annuity products are not FDIC insured, are not bank guaranteed, are not bank deposits, are not insured by any federal government agency, are not a condition to any banking service or activity, and may lose value.

© 2015 Churchill Asset Management LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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