Former U.S. Treasury secretary and Harvard University president Lawrence H. Summers will join New York hedge fund firm D.E. Shaw & Co. as a part-time managing director."Larry is an enormously gifted economist and has made major contributions as a researcher, a public servant and an academic leader," David Shaw, chairman of the $25-billion fund manager, said in a statement.

Summers, 51, will work on strategic initiatives, high-level portfolio management activities, and help review the firm's operations, Shaw said in the statement.

Summers stepped down as Harvard president in June after a tumultuous five-year tenure. He repeatedly clashed with faculty from the school's undergraduate college, who passed a no-confidence motion against him in March 2005. The faculty was preparing a second motion in February when he resigned.

Summers joins a spate of former Washington insiders who’ve turned to hedge fund groups as their next employers. Most recently, former Treasury Secretary Paul H. O'Neill joined New York-based buyout firm Blackstone Group as an advisor.

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