Rainmaker Cathleen Ellsworth is Lindsay Goldberg’s first woman partner

The former BlackRock exec - named to our inaugural Rainmaker 20 list - will be responsible for fundraising and investor relations.

Lindsay Goldberg took a major step in the direction of gender diversity, recruiting its first-ever female member of the private equity firm’s leadership team.

The firm this week announced the hire of Cathleen Ellsworth as a partner, responsible for fundraising and investor relations. She joins from BlackRock, where for four years she was a managing director, head of fundraising and investor relations, and co-head of global energy and power infrastructure fund co-investments.

Ellsworth was in 2019 named to Infrastructure Investor’s Rainmakers 20 list for her fundraising efforts at BlackRock.

Prior to BlackRock, Ellsworth was a partner, CMO and managing director with First Reserve, according to her LinkedIn profile. She began her career as an executive with Chemical Bank.

Lindsay Goldberg confirmed with sister title Buyouts that Ellsworth is the first woman partner in its 20-year history. She becomes the 10th member of the partnership team, led by CEO Alan Goldberg and chairman Robert Lindsay, the firm’s co-founders.

Women make up only 11.5 percent of all senior-level employees in the global PE industry, and only 9.9 percent of partners, according to Preqin’s 2020 Women in Alternatives report. In the US, female senior employees account for a slightly higher 11.9 percent share.

Buyouts’ March story points to an especially large gender gap at the deal partner level, including on investment committees.

Lindsay Goldberg also this week announced the hire of John Holland as a partner focused on business services investing. He formerly worked for 11 years at Warburg Pincus, most recently as a manager director. Before that, he was an associate with GTCR, his LinkedIn profile shows.

Lindsay Goldberg last year closed a fifth flagship fund at about $3.5 billion. Fund V will maintain a strategy of making control investments in mid-market companies, many of them family- or founder-owned, in business, financial and government services, consumer, healthcare and industrials sectors in North America and Europe.

The portfolio today holds 17 active investments. The latest addition, announced in December, was Pike, an outsourced maintenance and engineering services provider to electric utilities. Lindsay Goldberg in the same month sold Refresh, an outpatient mental health services provider, to Kelso & Company.

Read Buyouts‘ Women in private equity: 10 standouts discuss mentorship, diversity and the future here.