A former managing director of one of America’s largest private equity firms has been selected to lead Fuqua’s new Center for Financial Excellence.

Seth Gardner, Trinity ’89, Law and Fuqua ’94, was appointed executive director of the center Monday, according to a Fuqua School of Business news release.

 The center conducts financial research and helps educate students about finance.

In the release, Fuqua Dean Blair Sheppard said Gardner will “design next-generation financial education and training programs.” Sheppard said the center will draw from the financial crisis in its courses.

Cerberus Capital Management, where Gardner previously worked, purchased a 51 percent stake in GMAC, General Motors’ finance arm, in 2006. In 2008, GMAC received $5 billion in bailout funds.

“Duke understands that our nation’s educational institutions must better prepare students for the consequential responsibilities they’ll ultimately assume in managing our financial institutions,” Gardner said in the release. “I am committed to helping Duke execute this critical undertaking.”

Before joining Cerberus, Gardner specialized in corporate restructuring as a lawyer with a New York firm.