Thompson's Guggenheim Fellowship
Fred Thompson is, of course, very well known for his career in Hollywood and for his tenure in the U.S. Senate.
More opaque, though, have been Thompson's other ventures. Yesterday, with the release of Thompson's personal financial disclosure, comes the revelation that in addition to lobbying work he has done for a British firm and some dabbling in Tennessee real estate, he has also been serving on the board of Guggenheim Advisors a New York-based financial management firm that serves a select group of the nation's well-to-do elite. Thompson is paid between $100,000 and $1 million a year by Guggenheim.
The firm was founded in 2002, by the Guggenheim family -- yes, those Guggenheims -- and according to press accounts, its offices are lined with photos of the architectural masterpieces that bear the fabled family name.
Institutional Investor reports that the firm has put about $3 billion into a variety of hedge funds for four dozen clients. Advising the firm on its investments is Lawrence Lindsey, a former assistant to President George W. Bush for economic policy and ex-director of the National Economic Council. Other members include former ambassadors Stephen Bosworth and Ed Gabriel.
The firm has already been helpful to Thompson as he set out to launch his presidential bid. In May, the firm hosted an event for Thompson at the St. Regis Hotel in New York where he and Lindsey were to deliver an economic policy and national security briefing to a select audience -- press was not allowed inside. And over the summer, Guggenheim executives donated $12,500 to Thompson's nascent presidential bid, making the firm one of his 10 largest sources of funds.
Thompson's campaign declined a request to comment on his financial disclosure form. So it remains unclear whether he will continue to hold his position with the firm as he seeks the White House.
Posted at 10:16 AM ET on Oct 11, 2007
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