Daily News: February 11, 2016

PICO Holdings Names Brownstein, Marino II as New Directors


PICO Holdings, a diversified holding company, appointed Howard Brod Brownstein and Raymond V. Marino II as independent directors on its board.

Brownstein will replace Kristina M. Leslie, who chose to step down from the PICO board, as a Class II director . Marino will replace Robert G. Deuster, who chose to step down from the PICO board, as a Class I director .

“Howard and Ray are outstanding additions to the PICO board and we are confident that the extensive experience each of them brings to the PICO board will benefit PICO and our shareholders as we continue to move forward with our previously announced new business plan that contemplates, as assets are monetized, we would return capital back to shareholders through stock repurchases or through other means such as special dividends,” said John Hart, PICO’s chief executive officer. “Over the past few months, we have had the chance to seek input from many of our largest shareholders and we believe that the addition to the PICO board of high quality independent directors with the extensive experience and backgrounds that Howard and Ray bring to the PICO board is responsive to the input we have received from our shareholders, particularly given that Ray was recommended as a potential director by one of our institutional shareholders, Robotti & Company.”

Brownstein brings a broad financial and management consulting background, including extensive experience in finance, restructurings and turnarounds, strategic planning, valuing and selling businesses and corporate governance, as well as public company board experience. Brownstein is a turnaround and crisis management professional and currently serves as the president of The Brownstein Corporation, which provides turnaround management and advisory services to companies and their stakeholders, as well as investment banking services, fiduciary services and litigation consulting, investigations and valuation services. Since 2010, Brownstein has served on the board of directors of P&F Industries, a publicly-held manufacturer/importer of air-powered tools and various residential hardware products, and joined that board of directors after being recommended by a significant shareholder of P&F.

Marino brings extensive experience in real estate, investment management, executive­ level management, risk oversight, strategic planning, financial reporting and corporate governance, as well as public company board experience. For more than a decade, Marino served as the president and chief operating officer and a member of the board of directors of Mission West Properties, a publicly traded real estate investment trust involved in the development, investment and management of a portfolio that exceeded nine million square feet.

La Jolla, CA-based PICO Holdings includes investments in water resources and water storage operations, real estate operations and corporate and discontinued agribusiness operations.