A long-time Vanguard portfolio manager is calling it quits after some 38 years in the business. Edward Owens, portfolio manager of Vanguard Health Care Fund, plans to retire on December 31, according to the firm.

Owens, a senior vice president and partner of Wellington Management Company, has managed the Health Care Fund since its inception in 1984 and is Vanguard’s longest-tenured external portfolio manager. The fund is the largest fund in the global health/biotech category with $22.4 billion in assets and the second largest sector fund in the mutual fund industry behind the $27.3 billion Vanguard REIT Index Fund, according to Lipper.

Associate portfolio manager Jean Hynes, will assume managerial responsibility of the fund upon Owens’ retirement. Hynes, senior vice president and partner at Wellington Management, joined the firm in 1991 and has served on the Health Care Fund management team for nearly 20 years.

“While I still have great passion for research and investing, I believe it is time to pass the reins to the next generation of management,” stated Owens.

“Ed’s long-term track record of excellent returns puts him in very select company in the investment management business,” stated Vanguard CEO Bill McNabb. “We are indebted to him for his decades of distinguished service to our clients.”

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