The White House announced its intent on Aug. 3 to nominate Duke Buchan III ’85 as Ambassador to the Kingdom of Spain and the Principality of Andorra.
Buchan, a Henderson, N.C., native who graduated from Carolina with a B.A. in Economics and Spanish (from the Romance languages department) in 1985, is the highly successful founder and CEO of Hunter Global Investors L.P., a private investment management firm with multiple funds investing in a range of assets globally, including real estate. Since its inception, Buchan’s flagship fund, which has a long-term focus, has cumulative returns over 7.0 times the Hedge Fund Index and 2.3 times the S&P 500.
Prior to starting Hunter, Buchan worked at several large financial and Wall Street firms, beginning his investment banking career in the 1990s at Merrill Lynch, where he worked in corporate finance and mergers and acquisitions in Latin America, Europe and the United States. He received an MBA from Harvard Business School in 1991, and has studied at La Universidad de Valencia and La Universidad de Sevilla in Spain. He speaks Spanish, and has a working knowledge of Catalan.
Buchan has been a longtime University supporter, currently serving on the Arts and Sciences Foundation Board of Directors, most recently as vice chair, and on the Chancellor’s Philanthropic Council. He previously served on the University’s Campaign Planning Cabinet.
Buchan’s philanthropic impact on the University has been most felt in his support for its Spanish programs. In 2011, his family established the Buchan Excellence Fund, which the University called “the largest single endowment at Carolina dedicated to support faculty, graduate students and undergraduates working in Spanish languages, literature and culture.” The fund has supported research by students and professors in Spanish culture and linguistics, enabled travel to Spain and Spanish-speaking countries, and a video exchange program between American and Spanish schoolchildren, among other work.
As Carolina Connections wrote in 2012:
“Carolina students taking Spanish can thank Duke Buchan III ’85 and his early obsession with the World Book Encyclopedia for innovative learning experiences that make the language more relevant than ever.”
Buchan’s family also provided the funding to purchase the old Chapel Hill Public Library as the new home of the University’s Arts and Sciences Foundation, which was named the Buchan House for the family’s generosity.
Buchan and his wife, Hannah, have three children and live in Palm Beach, Florida, and New York City. The family also owns and manages farms that grow more than 100 varieties of heirloom vegetables and raise horses.