Lilia Calderon Clemente holds the distinction of being the first Filipino woman in the United States to win international renown as one of the world's most famous global managers. Forbes magazine dubbed her one of "the hottest money global managers," while Fortune hailed her as one of the world's "15 top money managers for high net-worth investors."
Clemente is the chairperson and chief executive officer of Clemente Capital, Inc. (CCI) an investment adviser company she founded in 1979. She took $5 million in start-up capital and multiplied it into an unprecedented $1.7 billion in assets in just ten years. Originally pegged to focus on economic and business consulting, CCI reorganized its business to focus on managing money with a global emphasis.
Clemente first came to the United States at 19 to take her master's in economics at the University of Chicago Graduate School. Her first big break came when she joined the Ford Foundation in 1969. She was appointed director of investment research and assistant treasurer, becoming the first woman officer, and the youngest, in the foundation's history. In 1976, she left the Ford Foundation to start CCI. Her advice to up-and-coming investment managers is simple: "You need three Gs: guts, God up there and grunt work."