There has been rapid growth in women’s labour force participation over recent decades and the industries projected to experience the greatest employment growth in coming decades are female-dominated. In addition it is well documented that companies with women in senior decision making positions perform better. Despite these gains, the COVID-19 pandemic disproportionately hit women workers, increasing the need to adopt a gender lens in investment. Taking strong action to create and sustain high quality jobs for women will be critical in the recovery and create a more inclusive economic recovery. This session looks at the gender gap and the tools and processes available to improve the gender lens for investors both organisationally and for the companies they invest in.
Lenox Park Solutions is a FinTech company providing collaborative software and data aggregation tools in financial services. The firm’s mission is to remove systemic bias and inefficient costs relating to capital access. Before Lenox Park, Lamin worked in the New York and London offices of Merrill Lynch, in mergers & acquisitions and structured credit derivatives.
Graduating from the University of Texas at Austin with a B.A. in Economics, Lamin remains active at his alma mater, serving on boards for the departments of economics and black studies. He was honored to deliver the Liberal Arts Commencement Address for 2017 University of Texas graduates, where he spoke about the importance of diversity and inclusion. He is an active member of the United Nations Private Sector Forum, and in 2008 founded Nyawa Funding Group, a not-for-profit organisation with a mission to improve living standards in Sierra Leone.
Helena Morrissey has over three decades’ experience in financial services, including 15 years as chief executive of Newton Investment Management. While at Legal & General she spearheaded the launch of the UK’s first gender-lens equity fund for retail investors. Helena is lead NED at the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office and on the board of Green Park, an executive search firm specialising in diverse appointments. She is chair of the global ESG practice at Edelman, the communications consultancy.
Morrissey is well known for her work on inclusion and diversity. In 2010, she founded the 30% Club, a campaign for better gender-balanced boards. Since then, the representation of women on FTSE350 boards has risen from less than 10% to over 30%. There are now seventeen 30% Clubs throughout the world. Morrissey chairs the Diversity Project, aimed at improving diversity across all dimensions in the investment industry.
She entered the House of Lords in September 2020 and was appointed a Dame in 2017. Her first book, A Good Time To Be A Girl, was described by Forbes magazine as one of the five most empowering books for women in 2018. She posts daily career dressing advice on Instagram and is one of LinkedIn’s ‘Top Voices’.
Morrissey is married with nine children.
David Neal is IFM Investors’ chief executive, responsible for executing the firm’s strategy and delivering strong results for IFM Investors’ clients, shareholders and staff. He leads IFM’s global business, with nine offices and four investment teams: infrastructure, debt investments, listed equities and private equity.
Neal joined IFM Investors from the Future Fund, Australia’s sovereign wealth fund, which he joined in 2007 as its inaugural chief investment officer before becoming the chief executive in 2014. At the Future Fund, he established the investment team and built and designed the fund’s investment model. Prior to joining the Future Fund, he spent 15 years with Willis Towers Watson, where he started his career in the UK. He went on to establish and lead the firm’s investment consulting business in Australia. As head of investment consulting at Willis Towers Watson Australia, Neal led the team providing advisory services to the Future Fund when it was established in 2006.
White is responsible for the content across all Conexus Financial’s institutional media and events. She is responsible for directing the bi-annual Fiduciary Investors Symposium which challenges global investors on investment best practice and aims to place the responsibilities of investors in wider societal, and political contexts, as well as promote the long-term stability of markets and sustainable retirement incomes. She is the editor of conexust1f.flywheelstaging.com, the online news and analysis site for the world’s largest institutional investors. White has been an investment journalist for more than 20 years and has edited industry journals including Investment & Technology, Investor Weekly and MasterFunds Quarterly. She was previously editorial director of InvestorInfo and has worked as a freelance journalist for the Australian Financial Review, CFO, Asset and Asia Asset Management. She has a Bachelor of Economics from Sydney University and a Master of Arts in Journalism from the University of Technology, Sydney. She was previously a columnist for the Canadian publication, Corporate Knights, which is distributed by the Globe and Mail and The Washington Post. White is currently a fellow in the Finance Leaders Fellowship at the Aspen Institute. The two-year program consists of 22 fellows and seeks to develop the next generation of responsible, community-spirited leaders in the global finance industry.