Michael Walden-Newman is the State Investment Officer for the Nebraska Investment Council in Lincoln. The Council manages $27 billion across 34 investment programs. The funds are spread among over 70 investment firms and over 150 investments. The assets include state and local government pensions, state operating funds, and other endowments and trusts. Michael was appointed SIO in December 2014. He came to the Council after 10 years as chief investment officer for the State of Wyoming in Cheyenne, where he managed $19 billion in state non-pension permanent funds. Michael earned his BA at the University of Oregon; and his MPA from Louisiana State University. Michael was named 2005 Alumnus of the Year by the Public Administration Institute at LSU's E. J. Ourso College of Business. Michael served as a Peace Corps Volunteer for 3 1/2 years in Senegal, West Africa in the mid-1970s. He returned to Senegal in 1981 to work four more years as a State Department contractor. He speaks French and Diola, the language of southwest Senegal.