Nuveen drives global ESG capabilities
BY ELIZA BAVIN
Nuveen has appointed a new head of sustainability for one of its subsidiaries that works to acquire and manage agricultural real estate assets.
Westchester Group Investment Management, a TIAA and Nuveen company, has appointed Cristina Hastings Newsome as head of sustainability.
Hastings Newsome will aim to drive Westchester's global sustainability efforts, supporting the team's approach to sensitively managing farmland investments.
Based in London, she will support Westchester's response to rising investor demand for carbon neutral portfolios, providing scalable, natural solutions to counter climate change through farmland investments.
Hastings Newsome will also support Westchester's ESG committee to lead innovation and implementation on a broader range of ESG themes across the farmland portfolio, including providing supportive working conditions and resource efficiency.
Hastings Newsome brings more than 18 years' experience, joining from Louis Dreyfus Company (LDC) in Switzerland where she was global sustainability lead.
She has also previously held roles at AstraZeneca, Proteus and Accenture.
Originally from the UK, Cristina has significant international experience in sustainable agricultural production systems across Europe, the US, Latam and Asia Pacific regions.
Westchester chief executive Martin Davies said the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of agriculture to everyday societies, with food essential to a growing population.
"The FAO estimate that $350 billion of investment is needed annually by agriculture and the supply chain to develop sustainable food production systems," Davies said.
"With a limited land resource base and focus on more efficient resource use stable supply-demand dynamics for agricultural produce are critical for a sustainable future."
Davies said Westchester is committed to reducing the environmental impact of agricultural production whilst partnering with local communities to drive ESG improvements.
"Cristina brings with her a wealth of experience that will be integral to support sustainability efforts across our farmland portfolio," he said.
"We continue to evolve our approach to ESG to meet our commitment to drive positive change and client demand, and Cristina's appointment is testament to this."