Morningstar has recognized Mary Ellen Stanek, the president of Baird Funds and co-chief investment officer of Baird Advisors, with its Outstanding Portfolio Manager Award for 2022.
“I’m humbled to be recognized for a career focused on stewarding our clients’ assets and controlling risk,” Stanek said. “I remain grateful for our team and how they continually support our investors with our all-weather approach. We’re proud to do this work and serve our investors year after year.”
The award is given to one person annually and is based on an in-depth qualitative analysis by Morningstar’s manager research analysts. Nominees are selected based on the research and then the analysts vote on a winner.
Chicago-based Morningstar’s nomination of Stanek praised her for leading “a nimble, tight-knit team that plays to its strengths.” It also noted the funds Stanek leads have attracted strong flows and generated “impressive absolute and risk-adjusted returns” since she joined the firm in October 2000.
“Stanek has an investors-first mentality,” the nomination said. “Long before it was the industry norm, Stanek and her team launched strategies with some of the lowest fees available among actively managed peers; the managers don't have to take on more risk to clear their price hurdles and beat their respective benchmarks. Stanek and her team also produce comprehensive educational content on fixed-income markets for investors and own large stakes in the funds they run.”
Steve Booth, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Milwaukee-based Baird, called the recognition of Stanek “extraordinarily well deserved.”
“Mary Ellen and her outstanding team have a proven approach that has helped their clients navigate all types of markets,” Booth said. “The team’s dedication to clients and consistency for more than 20 years at Baird and many years before that have been key to their long-term success.”