The Business Case and Opportunity for Diversity in Institutional Investing
While most areas of business have recognized the opportunity and joined the movement towards social justice and racial equity, the asset management industry lags far behind. This is particularly troubling given the outsized amount of power and influence investment management organizations have in our society. In addition to providing individuals access to some of the most lucrative careers, these organizations are also able to enact change through the investment choices they make, the entities to which they allocate capital, and through their ongoing influence as debt holders and shareholders. In short, the investment community can create, or stifle, a business environment that provides opportunities for talent of all persuasions. Unfortunately, according to a report by FundFire from 2017, over 80% of portfolio managers and executives at money management firms were white and male. Less than 2% of investment industry roles are held by Blacks.
Questions to be addressed:
– Beyond the moral imperative, what is the business case for a more diverse, equitable and inclusive institutional investment industry?
– What examples of successful pathways for the industry exist (addressed by institutional asset owners and asset managers)?
– How can we measure progress and impact? What would success look like for the industry over the next 5 to 10 years?
– Is there a role for change through federal policy?
This will be a virtual event with opportunity for participants to participate in the discussion through their questions to the panelists.
Participants must register by NOON on February 16th to receive details on joining the discussion. The Zoom link will be sent out 24 hours before the event.
Please note that no refunds will be issued.
CEO, Northern Trust Asset Management
Shundrawn A. Thomas serves as President of Northern Trust Asset Management where his responsibilities include developing long-term strategy, executing operating plans, cultivating client relationships, managing vendor relationships and developing talented professionals. He also serves as a member of the Management Group for Northern Trust Corporation.
Previously, Shundrawn served as Executive Vice President, Head of Funds and Managed Accounts. In this capacity he oversaw the development, management and distribution of Northern Funds, Northern Institutional Funds, FlexShares Exchange Traded Funds as well as the Managed Accounts practice which provides investment advisory solutions to clients. Shundrawn also served as President and Chief Executive of Northern Trust Securities, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Northern Trust Corporation. Prior to joining the asset management executive team, Shundrawn served as Head of Corporate Strategy for Northern Trust Corporation. As a direct report to the Chief Executive Officer, he supported executive management with key strategic planning initiatives. Prior to joining Northern Trust, Shundrawn served as a Vice President of Goldman Sachs and held positions in sales, trading and research with Morgan Stanley.
Shundrawn received a B.S. degree in accounting from Florida A&M University and an MBA degree from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He has also completed executive education programs in corporate strategy at Chicago Booth School of Business and corporate governance at University of Notre Dame Mendoza School of Business. Shundrawn currently holds FINRA series 7 and 63 securities licenses. Shundrawn currently serves as a trustee for Wheaton College, IL and as a board director Museum of Science & Industry, Chicago. Shundrawn is a member of the Economic Club of Chicago. His civic involvement has afforded him the opportunity to present and lecture nationally on topics including leadership, strategy, investment management and professional development.
Chair Emeritus, Cambridge Associates
Sandra A. Urie is Chairman Emeritus and formally served in the roles of CEO, Chairman, and COO of Cambridge Associates. Prior to her management positions, Ms. Urie was a member of the firm’s investment team. Before joining Cambridge Associates, she held a number of positions at Phillips Academy (Andover), including faculty member (Russian Language), Associate Secretary of the Academy in the development office, and member of the admissions office staff.
Ms. Urie was a member and Vice-Chair of the Investors’ Committee of the U.S. President’s Working Group on Financial Markets (2007-2010), focusing on defining best practices in alternative assets. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of Stanford Management Company, Social Finance, Inc., The Crane Institute of Sustainability, the Plymouth Rock Company, and the Board of Advisors at the Boston Symphony Orchestra. She formerly served on boards of the Global Board of 100 Women in Finance as Vice-Chair (formerly 100 Women in Hedge Funds), Homesite Group Incorporated, Yale School of Management, Boston Lyric Opera, Phillips Academy, Belmont Day School, and Buckingham Browne & Nichols School. She was awarded the 2015 Investor Lifetime Achievement Award from Institutional Investor.
EDUCATION and professional designations:
BA, Stanford University
MPPM, Yale School of Organization and Management
Chartered Financial Analyst
Managing Director, Sustainable Investing and Chief Compliance Officer, Harvard Management Company
Kate Murtagh is Managing Director for sustainable investing and the Chief Compliance Officer of Harvard Management Company, Inc. (HMC). Ms. Murtagh joined HMC in 2006.
As Managing Director, Ms. Murtagh is responsible for designing and implementing HMC’s sustainable investing program across all asset classes. Ms. Murtagh developed HMC’s first sustainable investing policy and worked closely with Harvard University in its decision to become the first US endowment signatory to the United Nations-supported Principles for Responsible Investment, as well as its recent commitment to make the endowment portfolio net zero of greenhouse gases by 2050.
As Chief Compliance Officer, Ms. Murtagh is responsible for regulatory and legal matters relating to HMC’s investment activities. In this capacity, Ms. Murtagh has extensive expertise in the structuring and implementation of various investment strategies including co-mingled funds, separately managed accounts, joint ventures, private REITS, and direct asset ownership.
Prior to HMC, Ms. Murtagh was a partner in the Business Law department of Goodwin Procter LLP, a national law firm based in Boston, MA. Ms. Murtagh was named a 2017 “Leader in the Law” by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly for her innovative work in sustainable investing and a 2018 “Top Mind” by Compliance Week.
Ms. Murtagh earned a BS in management from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and a JD from Cornell Law School, where she served as managing editor of the Cornell Law Review.
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