Women have historically been underrepresented in the financial services industry, particularly in leadership roles. We saw an opportunity for our organization to bring together men and women from across the industry to address this issue and identify ways to attract the next generation of women leaders and financial advisors.
In 2017, we hosted our first Advancing Women in Leadership Workshop as a pre-conference event during our Annual Conference. In 2019, we hosted our first standalone, in-person workshop in Washington, D.C., bringing together female executives and female financial advisors. In addition to networking and conversations, attendees met with members of the House Financial Services Committee’s Subcommittee on Diversity and Inclusion on Capitol Hill. Together, they discussed the industry’s and subcommittee’s efforts to promote diversity in the financial services industry and ensuring minority communities have access to the financial advice and services needed to achieve their financial goals.
Over the past four years, we have hosted seven workshops, totaling 621 attendees. These workshops have brought together both women and men from across the U.S. for networking, leadership development, and mentorship opportunities. In addition to the workshops, we have been making a concerted effort to ensure female representation on panels, and our OneVoice 2019 conference featured an all-women CEO panel.
The American Dream is for each and every American, regardless of race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, or background. At the Financial Services Institute (FSI), our mission is to ensure ALL Americans have access to the affordable, professional financial advice they need to achieve their dreams. We will continue to champion efforts that drive diversity, equity, and inclusion in the financial services industry and beyond.
In order to be successful in this mission, we must all be part of the solution. I am committed to learning, listening, and finding meaningful ways to achieve justice for all.