Q1 2023
Women Investing in Women
President's Letter
So much in store for 2023!

We are beyond excited about all we have in store for you in the coming year! We should start by thanking you – our members, our sponsors, our volunteers, our friends, our community – for making 2022 another successful year for Women Investment Professionals. We recognize that our success depends on your passion and commitment. 

Read our President's Letter.
Upcoming Events
Join WIP to take advantage of member pricing
11:30 AM CT - February 9
Location: The Dalcy
Connect with colleagues and prepare for the year ahead by attending our annual Economic Outlook Luncheon.
Register here.
10:00 AM CT - First Friday of the month
Location: Zoom
20 minutes of randomized, casual, one-on-one networking with other WIP members.
Register once, then visit the WIP Café as often as you wish.
A Coffee Roulette Success Story
Defined Contribution Specialist,
T. Rowe Price
I met WIP Board Vice President Fran Skinner during Coffee Roulette in February 2022. We formed an instant connection, as Fran, with her extensive public speaking and leadership experience, was able to provide me with tangible advice for a presentation I was giving at the St. Louis CFA Society Annual Dinner the following week. We stayed in touch as Fran also seemed interested in hearing my perspectives on leadership and ideas for the overall WIP organization.
At Coffee Roulette in March 2022, I also met Lauren Durfey, an Investment Consultant at Aon. Lauren was volunteering on the WIP Strategy Committee and was spearheading a new initiative called the Partners Program, a forum for WIP members to develop supportive and long-term relationships on equal footing by sharing mutual wisdom and experience (more to come in 2023)! I shared some best practices I had learned from volunteering with other industry organizations such as AIMSE and STLWIN, and Lauren planted the seed for me to join the team. As the year continued, I was approached by Fran to Chair the WIP Innovation Committee (formerly known as the Strategy Committee) and to spearhead the new WIP University program.
I love deepening my involvement with WIP because I think we have a great responsibility within the institutional investment community to help shape what retirement security will look like for generations to come. I’m so excited to see the important role that women, and minorities more broadly, will play in that transformation, and I want to do everything I can to support women in the way that so many have supported me along my journey. I’m also honored to join the WIP Board as of January 2023. 

Please reach out to Beth if you'd like to learn more.
Volunteers Wanted!

Women Investment Professionals has benefited greatly from the continued support and involvement of a diverse group of volunteers.

WIP hosts approximately 15 – 20 in-person and virtual events for its 400+ members. These events are planned, organized, and executed by the Events Committee (the “EC”). WIP is seeking a Chair (or Co-Chairs) to lead the EC. The ideal candidate(s) is a skilled project manager with experience in event execution and management. She is enthusiastic, organized, and creative. The EC Chair will work closely with the WIP Board of Directors as well.

The Membership Committee is focused on providing a compelling member value proposition via organizational growth and meeting the varied needs of WIP’s members. This is accomplished through a targeted campaign of membership events, input from members by surveys and feedback forms, as well as various quarterly communications. You are invited to join us in helping manage the lifeblood of our organization.

Learn more about WIP Committees and get involved.
Welcome, New and Renewing Members!
WIP warmly welcomes members who joined or renewed in Q4 2022!
  • Betty Salanic, Accelerate Investors
  • Foram Thakkar, Aegon
  • Geeta Vemuri, Agent Capital
  • Thi Nguyen, Aon
  • Joanna Martinez, Ariel Investments
  • Carmen DeRose, Ariel Investments
  • Natalie Ullman, Artisan Partners
  • Christine Calderon, BNY Mellon Wealth Management
  • Rosa E. Moreno, Digital Alpha Advisors LLC
  • Elizabeth Haynes, Fox Swibel Levin & Carroll LLP
  • Gabrielle Freeman, Harbor Capital Advisors
  • Ashley DeMarte, Jackson
  • Jade Mestdagh, Jackson
  • Alexandra Peponis, Jackson
  • Samantha Fukushima, Jackson
  • Lori Scott, Lafayette Square
  • Wai Yee Cheng, Lafayette Square 
  • Magda Pecyna, LGIM America
  • Ivy Lung, MacArthur Foundation
  • Sweena Kahn, Madison Dearborn
  • Gabriela Arroyo, Mercer
  • Colleen Fearn, Mercer
  • Colleen Callahan, N/A
  • Thomas Obaseki, Neuberger Berman
  • Nicole Johnson-Barnes, Northern Trust
  • Jen Hoffenkamp, Northern Trust
  • Kirsten Janes, Northern Trust
  • Elizabeth Walker, Northern Trust
  • Ashley Allison, Northern Trust
  • Erica Fermin, PPM America
  • Charlotte Cusan, Red Arts Capital
  • Catherine Mazza, Schroders
  • Maureen McCoy-Schafer, Segal Marco
  • Michelle Hill, TorreBlanc, Ltd.
  • Asha Olasa, Wolverine Asset Management
Not currently a member or need to renew? Visit our membership page.
Member Benefits
Take advantage of the full range of benefits available:
WIP Jobs Board

Did you know that the WIP jobs board constantly offers new jobs posted from various investment organizations? Our LinkedIn series will continue to highlight positions on a weekly basis.

You can submit a no-charge, 30-day job posting by emailing info@wipchicago.org.
Interview with a Gold Sponsor: Mercer
Partner, Endowment & Foundation Segment Leader, Not-For-Profit Consulting Team
  • How has your career evolved and what have been some notable successes and challenges?
I have been with the same organization (through some name and ownership changes) for over 22 years which I think is an anomaly in this day and age of more frequent movements in one’s career. Somehow, I found a career that I was quickly passionate about and also provided the ability to evolve as I evolved as well. From the early days of wearing multiple hats with roles on the manager research and across client consulting teams to now an exclusive focus on partnering with not-for profit clients to meld their mission with their investments and leading the firm’s endowments and foundations practice, I have been able to choose my own path based on what I was excited about but what was also equally challenging and rewarding. 
Successes in my career have been numerous and I would be remiss to not say that there have been some huge client wins that I have been extremely proud of. But what has meant the most to me are the success stories and witnessing the real life impact through new programs, cutting edge advances in healthcare and technology, new facilities, etc. that not-for-profits have been able to deliver as a result of my (supported by a tremendous about of resources, of course) involvement with their organization. I don’t think it gets much better than that!
Challenges are also numerous and come in varying ways but that is also what keeps me motivated each day to overcome those obstacles and figure out solutions to problems.
  • How important is corporate culture as it relates to women within the finance industry and what are some observations within your field/area of expertise? 
Corporate culture is extremely important in order for women to be more represented in the finance industry and it’s a business imperative. I have been very lucky in that early on in my career, I had many strong female leaders that not only set a precedent but were also tremendous mentors for me and established a strong culture base. I also had some amazingly, supportive male allies that served in the same capacity which is a critical component to re-enforcing a successful culture that allows females to bring their whole self to work, feel supported and thrive. I think that all colleagues, regardless of gender, have a role to play in promoting a positive culture and evoking change. 
  • What are your priorities for 2023 and beyond?
On the personal front, after a 10 year hiatus, I am training for another half marathon this year. As an added benefit to not only completing the race and physical fitness, I have chosen to run the Napa to Sonoma event for the views and of course, post-race wine!
I have no shortage of career priories for this year and beyond. Over the last handful of years, I have become immersed in all things DEI related. I believe that diversity must be a part of what we do internally, how we show outside of our organization within the industry, and how we align with our diverse clients. I am committed, feel challenged and invigorated as I continue to develop best practices, keep everyone accountable, and be an accelerator. Accelerators push the envelope in investment program implementation, engagement and advocacy to set the standard for future best practices and I feel honored to be one of those individuals at Mercer that is leading the way.
  • What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? How can the WIP community help? 
Spare time, ha, what spare time?! I have two very active boys, so if I am not running around to sporting activities, you will find me working out (yes, I got a Peloton bike during the pandemic and have since doubled down and got the Peloton tread too) to compensate for the great food and wine that I like to enjoy with my friends and family. 
I think of the WIP community as a fantastic brain trust of so much priceless information. From tips and tricks for efficiency and advancing your career to intellectual capital and even book recommendations, it is so exhilarating to be around a group of like-minded, strong women that are providing so much transparency, ideas, and recommendations to collectively further support one another regardless of what firm we work for. The industry is small and this community truly has embraced one another and is driving the change and I feel honored to be a part of it!
UNDIVERSIFIED: The Big Gender Short in Investment Management, authored by Ellen Carr and Katrina Dudley, two investment industry role models.

Recommended by Adela Ghinet, WIP Board Member and Communications Committee Chair, this book digs deep into the psycho-cultural causes of the lack of diversity in our industry and provides real multi-faceted, actionable solutions for recruiting, retaining, and promoting women. Purchase it on Amazon.

Have a book you'd recommend? Email us.
Thank You to Our Sponsors!
We are grateful for our valued sponsors who support diversity initiatives promoting the advancement, recruitment, and retention of women in the investment industry and related fields. Click here for a list of all WIP sponsors.
WIP Platinum Sponsors:
Women Investment Professionals