Jess Ravich, one of the most senior Wall Street executives to have been publicly accused of sexual harassment, has departed TCW, the giant bond-fund manager where he was one of the top officials, according to a TCW spokesman.
Mr. Ravich, as head of the firm’s alternative-products group, oversaw TCW’s investments in areas like lending to companies and commercial real estate. He also served briefly as a board member at the Los Angeles-based firm, which manages about $200 billion.
TCW didn’t say why Mr. Ravich was leaving. He and the firm declined to comment on the reasons for his departure. A spokeswoman for his accuser, former TCW employee Sara Tirschwell, said that her lawsuit spoke for itself.
Ms. Tirschwell filed her suit against TCW, Mr. Ravich and the firm’s chief executive, David Lippman, in January 2018. A former TCW fund manager, Ms. Tirschwell claimed that Mr. Ravich had pressured her into sex. After she stopped having sex with him, Ms. Tirschwell alleged, Mr. Ravich no longer supported the fund she had been hired to manage, making it impossible for her to succeed. She was fired late in 2017, around the time that Mr. Ravich joined TCW’s board of directors. He stepped down from the board less than a year later.
As part of her suit, Ms. Tirschwell alleged a textbook case of sexual harassment, in which a powerful man coerced a woman to perform sexual favors in return for professional advancement. Mr. Ravich has denied having sex with Ms. Tirschwell or otherwise acting inappropriately.
Mr. Ravich’s departure from TCW was earlier reported by Reuters.
Ms. Tirschwell was hired at TCW through her connection to Mr. Ravich, who she first met in the 1990s and briefly dated in the early 2010s.
In 2016, TCW hired her to manage her own bond fund. That spring, Ms. Tirschwell claimed, Mr. Ravich summoned her to his New York City apartment for a series of breakfast meetings, during which they had sex. She believed that if she rebuffed her superior, Mr. Ravich would not help her fund get off the ground. Over the months that followed, the situation recurred, she said, with Mr. Ravich often answering the door to his apartment for planned business meetings in a white terry cloth bathrobe.
Eventually, Ms. Tirschwell alleged, she stopped having sex with Mr. Ravich. At that point, she said, he stopped supporting her fund, depriving her of resources and introductions to potential investors. Her fund’s performance suffered, and in December 2017 Ms. Tirschwell was fired. The following month, she sued TCW, Mr. Ravich and Mr. Lippman for gender discrimination, retaliation and wrongful termination.
The lawsuit, filed in New York State court, represented perhaps the highest-profile allegation against a top finance executive since the #MeToo era got underway in 2017.
TCW has denied Ms. Tirschwell’s claims, arguing that she was fired for violating company policies, not as an act of retaliation. The suit is pending in New York State court.