Phoenix Duff & Phelps Corp., a Hartford, Conn.-based investment manager, has expanded its regional sales force and promoted two of its investment strategists to portfolio manager positions.

The company, a unit of Phoenix Home Life, named Kenneth L. Ward as vice president for retail sales in the Southwest, a new position. He will oversee sales in Texas, Oklahoma, and Louisiana of Phoenix's mutual funds, managed accounts, employee benefit plans, and variable annuities.

Mr. Ward joins Phoenix from Lord Abbett & Co., a New York-based mutual fund company, where he worked for 12 years. Most recently, he was responsible for mutual fund sales in the Southwest. Mr. Ward reports to John F. Sharry, senior vice president.

The company - which manages $36 billion in investments, including $9 billion in mutual funds - recently began marketing its wares through banks.

In related news, Phoenix named Van Harissis portfolio manager of the $2.4 billion Phoenix Growth Fund. Previously, he was an associate portfolio manager for the Phoenix Small Cap Fund. He succeeds William Newman, who now concentrates on managing two other equity funds.

Also, Timothy Heaney was named co-manager of both the Phoenix Tax-Exempt Bond and California Tax-Exempt Bond portfolios. They have a combined $274 million under management.

Mr. Heaney joined Phoenix as an investment analyst in 1992, and became manager of its municipal bond sector the following year.

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