10 Apr 2018
FI Breakfast Briefing: Cultivating diversity in asset management
Practical steps and data applications to solve the diversity mismatch

Diversity advocates in recent years have pointed to statistics that show corporate diversity’s positive impacts on performance. However, the latest data continues to show that male portfolio managers outnumber their female counterparts at a ratio of nine to one, for example, and female directors still make up less than 25% of all fund board seats, despite major strides in recent years. Other types of diversity still have a long way to go as well.

So what’s the holdup?

Please join Fund Intelligence for a breakfast briefing on May 16 at the Lamb’s Club in New York to discuss some of the innovative ways fund companies are approaching the diversity mismatch in their ranks.

Members and those interested in Fund Directions, Fund Action, Fund Operations, Compliance Reporter, Private Asset Management and Fund Map are invited to attend.

This breakfast briefing will speak to issues impacting both the front and back offices at mutual fund firms, including strategies and case studies for recruiting, retention, boardroom diversity and the intersection of the fund industry and tech.


08:30 Registration & networking breakfast
09:10 Introduction
09:15 Panel discussion
10:00 Questions
10:15 Close

Potential discussion topics include:
• What fund companies can do to recruit and retain candidates
• Data and technology as tools to promote diversity efforts
• Testing diversity initiatives
• Client-facing initiatives

Speakers include:

Lori Schneider, Partner, K&L Gates
Lori has over twenty years of experience in representing investment advisers and investment companies on transactional, regulatory and compliance matters. She also advises the independent directors of investment companies on corporate governance and regulatory matters. She has substantial experience advising clients on issues relating to social media and cybersecurity. She also assists clients in developing and structuring registered products using alternative investment strategies and “manager-of-managers” structures.

George Wilbanks, Managing Partner, Wilbanks Partners
George spent over 26 years building the asset and wealth management practice at Russell Reynolds Associates to an industry leading position before starting his own firm in 2011. Earlier he had worked with a venture capital and family office business Agtek International, and then The Dreyfus Corporation in business development as Assistant to the Chairman. A graduate of Williams College with a degree in Political Philosophy, he subsequently earned his MBA in marketing at New York University’s graduate school of business.

Susan Lerner, PartnerJamesbeck Partners
Susan started her career as an investment banker, working with asset management clients for over 10 years on a broad range of capital raising and advisory transactions. She earned a BA in economics from Washington University in St. Louis, and an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, and is certified as a professional coach. Susan has been a long-time member of the Advisory Board of First Step, a job training program for homeless and low-income women in New York City.

Shaunice Hawkins, Principal, Evolutions Consulting LLC and Adjunct Professor, New York University
Shaunice Hawkins is the principal and chief strategist of business management boutique, Evolutions Consulting LLC.  A former chief Diversity & Multicultural Initiatives officer and U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) mediator, Hawkins has been nationally recognized for leadership over the course of her 25-year, multi-industry career and for achievement in the fields of human capital management, diversity and inclusion, business management, marketing and promotions, branding and reputation management, strategic planning and execution. An adjunct professor and visiting lecturer, Hawkins teaches doctoral, graduate, professional, and entrepreneurial courses at several colleges and universities in the New York Tri-State area (and beyond).

Moderator: Dervedia Thomas, Editor, Fund Action
Dervedia Thomas is the editor of Fund Action. She joined the publication in 2012 as a graduate trainee. Since then she’s reported and edited stories related to mutual fund, exchange-traded fund and closed-end fund product development, marketing and distribution. Dervedia is a 2012 graduate of the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism.