WSR Continues 2023 Pathfinders Series By Honoring Outstanding Women Executives, Professionals And An Organization For Women’s History Month
For the second year, WSR is celebrating Women’s History Month by honoring top women executives and professionals – as well as an industry organization that has led the way in women’s advancement – with recognition as the Top Women Industry Leaders of 2023. The list includes women leaders and rising stars from a broad range of backgrounds and industry spaces.
As with all WSR Pathfinder Awards, this month’s awards for individuals recognize professionals who have consistently demonstrated excellence and commitment to the wealth management industry, gained wide recognition as industry leaders and can serve as role models for others already working in or considering a career in wealth management. For organizational winners, WSR considered the organization’s initiative and progress in advancing DEI in wealth management.
The invitation-only awards also serve the purpose of generating discussion at the individual, firm and industry level on DEI issues by providing a platform for winners to speak to the industry. Today, three top women leaders share their experiences, thoughts and advice on women’s issues in separate, concurrently published articles.
Please join us in congratulating the winners:
Women’s History Month Organization of the Year
Founded in 2011, The American College Center for Women in Financial Services is part of The American College of Financial Services, the largest accredited institution for the financial services profession.
The Center for Women promotes women’s advancement in financial services through education, research and awareness, including an annual event in New York on March 8, International Women’s Day, that celebrates accomplishments and provides a forum for discussion of strategies to advance gender diversity in financial services.
The Center for Women also maintains a library of resources to promote awareness including an accountability pledge, a digital workbook, a financial literacy advocacy template that users may send to state legislators and the Women Working in Wealth Podcast.
Woman Investment Platform Leader of the Year
With 29 years of experience, Anderson joined ProEquities in 2016 as Vice President and Managing Director of Advisory and Planning, rising to President in July 2020. When ProEquities became Concourse Financial Group Securities, part of Concourse Financial Group, in 2021, Anderson’s role with ProEquities transformed into her current role at Concourse.
Prior to ProEquities, Anderson served as a Director at Edward Jones, leading the firm’s launch of it first fee-based, advisor-directed program, CEO of Sterne Agee Asset Management, an advisor with Merrill Lynch and Regional Vice President with AmSouth Investment Services and Pioneer Investment Advisors.
Anderson serves on the boards of the Investments & Wealth Institute, The Freshwater Land Trust, which builds trails and conserves land for the health and benefit of Alabama communities, and Magic Moments, an organization granting wishes to children in Alabama with chronic illnesses.
Woman Media Professional of the Year
With 16 years of experience in journalism, Britton arrived at WealthManagement.com, a publication of Informa, in 2010, where she is also Managing Editor of the print publication, WealthManagement magazine.
In her role, Britton manages content editing, development and approval while writing and reporting on stories relevant to the industry with a focus on asset management and independent broker-dealers, as well as hosting a monthly podcast, “The Healthy Advisor,” focused on advisor health and well-being.
Prior to her current role, Britton served as Managing Editor for Heavy Duty Trucking and in other roles with Institutional Investor, The Hollywood Reporter and The Daily Breeze.
Britton has been nominated for three Jesse H. Neal awards, by which the Software & Information Industry Association recognizes B2B journalists, and an Honorable Mention in the 2020 Trade Association Business Publications International (TABPI) awards.
Woman HR Leader of the Year
Leading the human capital strategy at Docupace for almost seven years, Cavalli reinforces the firm’s culture for employees, acquired talent and engagement programs, and implements reward and talent management strategies to support the firm’s growth and achievement.
With over 20 years of experience in human resources, Cavalli served previously as HR Director at XPRIZE Foundation and other roles at Kforce and Ultimate Staffing Services, including Ultimate Staffing’s Senior On Premise Manager for 20th Century Fox.
Cavalli is a member of the Society of Human Resource Management and holds the designation of Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP) and certification as a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) through the Human Resource Certification Institute.
Woman Recruiting Leader of the Year
Diamond, who founded Diamond Consultants in 1998, has developed her firm into a name known across the wealth management space, and one of WSR’s Top 5 FA Recruiting Firms of 2023.
Diamond counsels her clients to achieve the “Best Business Life,” which focuses on an advisor or firm reaching its full potential, including providing the best service to clients and living in sync with their values and beliefs.
Diamond frequently speaks at industry conferences and hosts a podcast – “Mindy Diamond on Independence” – for FAs and independent business owners providing knowledge and resources, insights on the recruitment landscape and conversations with advisors and experts.
She participates in webinars and keynotes at many industry events, such as RIA Institute Forums, Pershing INSITE, Schwab IMPACT, Fidelity Executive Forum, InvestmentNews Roundtable, Fidelity Investments Practice Management and Recruiters Summit, MarketCounsel Summit, InvestinWomen and Women Advisors Forum.
Diamond also serves on the board of the Invest in Others Charitable Foundation and enjoys quality time with her family, golf, reading, travel and exercise.
Woman Advisor Growth Leader of the Year
With three decades of industry experience, Ford leads Advisor Group’s advisor engagement efforts for over 10,000 professionals across the firm’s six wealth management subsidiaries, focusing on consistency, accountability and a drive toward desired metrics. As part of her role, she oversees the firm’s business coaching, consulting, wealth management marketing and National Advisory Board.
Ford previously served for almost three years as President and CEO of KMS Financial Services, which is now an Advisor Group subsidiary. Prior to KMS, she served as President of Cetera Advisors and Chief Marketing Officer of Pacific West Financial Group.
Ford is involved in empowering women in the workplace, having spoken at events for young women on topics of career, leadership, a positive mindset and discovering and using your natural strengths.
Woman Financial Planner of the Year
With almost 30 years of experience in financial services, Friedman mentors women through difficult life events and circumstances, including divorce, for which she is known as an author, speaker and industry leader, serving on the Board of the Association of Divorce Financial Planners, for which she hosts a monthly support and development call to educate financial planners specializing in divorce, who are mostly women.
Friedman co-founded The Center for Integrated Divorce, an Austin, Texas-based network of divorce mediators and related professionals, authored two books on financial issues that occur during divorce, and frequently mentors women professionals at Robertson Stephens and former students of the McCombs Business School.
She also serves as the title sponsor for the Town Hall of Impact Austin, a women’s collective giving organization that funds nonprofits in the Austin region, and is involved in various other charitable projects including the Austin Humane Society, the Paramount Theater and Friends of the Children Austin.
Woman Wealthtech Executive of the Year
Fritz co-founded F2 Strategy in 2017 with her husband, Doug Fritz, the firm’s CEO. In her role as Chief Commercial Officer, she leads the firm’s digital marketing, social media, content, public relations and brand strategy. Her passions include creating a company culture of well-being, supporting women in fintech and wealthtech, creating an inclusive work environment and enhancing DEI in the workplace.
With almost 20 years of experience, Fritz previously served in leadership roles in marketing and communications for various firms, including Wells Fargo Private Bank, U.S. Bank, BNP Paribas and Abbott Downing.
She is also a member of Chief, an organization that elevates women into positions of power by helping senior women leaders strengthen their leadership, affect change in organizations from leadership positions and cross-pollinate ideas in different industries.
Woman Rising Star of the Year
Gen Z professional Hagisufi has served at Prudential Financial in San Diego for almost five years, working with women clients experiencing major life changes, such as divorce or the death of a spouse. Her clients have grown 50% from year to year since 2018, and she has received numerous awards at her firm.
Prior to Prudential, she spent almost three years as a Financial Advisor for Edward Jones Investments, and two years as a teacher at Riverview Gardens School District.
A descendant of first generation Somali immigrants, Hagisufi speaks Somali and French. She received a Master’s in Secondary Education from the University of Missouri-Saint Louis and a B.A. in Economics from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Woman Consulting Executive of the Year
Herbers founded Herbers & Company over 20 years ago, consulting financial advisory firms on succession planning, operations management, client and digital client experience, human capital, marketing and sales. The firm conducts copious research to integrate into its consulting and training programs.
She led her firm to launch the Herbers & Company Academy over five years ago, a digital training platform that teaches and equips professionals on many of the same topics for which the firm provides consulting.
Herbers has received numerous awards by industry media outlets and participated for over 13 years in the faculty for CFP-registered undergraduate, graduate and doctoral programs at her alma mater, Kansas State University, where she studied personal financial planning, business, family studies and human services.
Woman Financial Advisor of the Year
Kim spent her entire three-decade career at SEIA. She is the first, and at current the only, woman to achieve a partnership at the firm. She aims her efforts at underserved niches, including the Korean American community in the Los Angeles area.
Kim has received numerous accolades, including being the seventh woman inducted into the John Hancock Hall of Fame, multiple Women Achievement Awards from the Century City Chamber of Commerce and many Advisor of the Year awards.
When not working, Kim actively engages in community service. She is President of the Harvard Westlake Korean Parent Association and a member of the St. James Episcopal School Parent Association and the Hancock Park NGA, which supports shelters for survivors of domestic violence and other needy women and children. She also serves on the Boards of the Century City Chamber of Commerce and Aviva Children’s Services.
Woman Business Development Executive of the Year
Stack joined Avantax over four years ago, managing the firm’s planning and execution of business development initiatives. In addition, she is the Head of the firm’s Women’s Advisor Forum, which works with the firm’s other DEI programs to enhance support for underrepresented communities in the industry. Approximately 24% of the firm’s financial professionals are women, compared with the industry average of 18%.
With over three decades of industry experience, Stack previously served as Director of Business Development at The Wealth Consulting Group, SVP, Head of Relationship Management at Cetera Advisors and multiple roles at LPL Financial.
Stack currently serves on the Securities Insurance Licensing Association Council and FINRA’s Licensing and Registration Council. Previously, she served other industry associations including the Insured Retirement Institute’s Government Affairs and Broker Dealer Committees.
Woman Agency Executive of the Year
Swift founded her firm three decades ago, growing it into a leading marketing communications firm focused solely on the financial services industry. Swift maintains a blog, Best Practices in the Financial Services Industry, a podcast, Swift Chats, and hosts the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors’ (NAPFA) Mindset Mastery podcast, now known as the NAPFA Nation Podcast.
Swift also contributes to the industry through articles in many media platforms including Forbes, Barron’s and The Wall Street Journal, has received numerous industry awards and speaks regularly at industry conferences and events.
Prior to joining the wealth management industry, Swift was a caterer and gourmet cook. She enjoys fine dining, family outings, travel and spending time with family, including her first grandchild.
Woman Media Entrepreneur of the Year
With 25 years of experience as a digital and print media executive and additional experience in sales and marketing, Taylor co-founded Digital Wealth News in October 2020. She also co-founded marketing and media consulting firm Fintegration 12 years ago, which focuses on the fintech and wealthtech spaces. She has consulted with hedge funds, wealthtech companies and RIAs.
Prior to founding Digital Wealth News, Taylor co-founded FintekNews, which was acquired by Charter Financial Publishing Network, the parent corporation of Financial Advisor magazine in 2018, where she continued to serve for almost three years. She also served as VP Sales and Marketing at Futures Magazine and Associate Publisher for Hemispheres Magazine, the in-flight magazine for United Airlines.
In 2002, Taylor founded TLC Media, a firm representing over 30 city, regional and international lifestyle magazines, and served as its President until 2010.
Woman Alternative Investments Leader of the Year
As a Partner, Teeple leads consulting firm Alliance 160’s project management team. Currently she is building the managing broker-dealer and distribution platform at CoastalOne, serving as the firm’s SVP, Managing Broker Dealer.
Her over two decades of experience in alternative investments includes both the asset manager and broker-dealer sides of the business, planning and implementing growth strategies, investment and operations due diligence, expanding markets for existing products, launching new products and strategies and assisting startups in bringing over $3 billion in alternative investments to market.
She previously served as Senior Managing Director at Forum Investment Group, Managing Director at Timbrel Capital, Managing Director at Evolv Capital Partners and Vice President, Due Diligence Officer at Triad Advisors.
Woman Asset Manager of the Year
Joining GeoWealth one and a half years ago, Wing is responsible for meeting the investment needs of the firm’s clients, ensuring its platform offers access, investment expertise and flexibility.
Prior to GeoWealth, Wing served in various roles at JP Morgan over 13 years, including Head of Investment Content and Digital Product, U.S. Wealth Management, and in roles covering product strategy, sustainable investing, thematic model portfolios and wealth management.
Wing earned her MBA at The Wharton School after studying finance and business at Penn State University. She holds a Project Management Certification as well as Series 63, 65 and 7 licenses.
Janeesa Hollingshead, Executive Editor at Wealth Solutions Report, can be reached at email@example.com