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Virtual Event

2021 Virtual Diversity Summit

November 17, 2021 - 12:00 PM - November 19, 2021 - 4:00 PM

2021 Diversity Summit Sessions

The 4th Annual Diversity Summit — held November 17-18, 2021 — focused on actionable solutions to advance diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) in the financial planning profession. The theme of the summit was Metrics that Matter, highlighting qualitative and quantitative metrics for firms’ workforce and culture by experts and practitioners. In order to continue to leverage the great discussions and ideas presented over the two-day event, recordings of available sessions can be accessed below for you to view.

Diversity Summit Videos


Welcome: Kevin Keller, CAE, Chief Executive Officer, CFP Board, D.A. Abrams, CAE, Managing Director, CFP Board Center for Financial Planning

Opening Remarks: U.S. Representative Joyce Beatty (OH-3), Chair, House Committee on Financial Services Diversity and Inclusion Subcommittee; Chair, Congressional Black Caucus

Opening Keynote

Introduction: Cy Richardson, Senior Vice President for Programs, National Urban League; Chair, CFP Board Center for Financial Planning Advisory Group

Speaker: Andy Sieg, President, Merrill Lynch Wealth Management

The authors of the 2021 Center for Financial Planning thought leadership paper discuss their articles on due diligence, leading and lagging metrics, and scaling up diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts.


Moderator: Maureen Thompson, Vice President of Public Policy, CFP Board

Panelists: Stefanie Johnson, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Management, Leeds School of Business, University of Colorado Boulder; Ella J. Bell Smith, Ph.D., Professor, Business Administration, Tuck School of Business, Dartmouth College; Rachel Robasciotti, Founder and CEO, Adasina Social Capital; Crystal Cox, CFP®, CRPC®, MBA, Vice President, Wealthspire Advisors; Emily Thomas, CFA®, Executive Director and Senior Impact Strategist, Morgan Stanley Wealth Management


During a “TED Talk” like presentation, professionals of color share their career experiences and describe the challenges and opportunities they experience as a person of color in the profession.


Introduction:Gerty Simon, Assistant Vice President of Wealth Management, Regional Diversity Officer, Morgan Stanley Wealth Management

Speaker: Reshell Smith, CFP®, MBA, Founder and President, AMES Financial Solutions, LLC

Financial planners at various stages in their careers discuss the importance of diverse financial planners, and the benefits of the career to clients, their communities, and the industry.


Moderator: Jocelyn D. Wright, CFP®, RICP®, MBA, Founder and CEO, Ascension Wealth Management LLC

Panelists: Cait Howerton, CFP®, AFC®, MBA, Lead Planner, Facet Wealth; Marguerita Cheng, CFP®, CRPC, RICP®, CSRIC®, Chief Executive Officer, Blue Ocean Global Wealth; Akeiva Ellis, CFP®, CPA/PFS, ChSNC®, Financial Education Specialist, Ballentine Partners; Ed Gonzalez, CFA®, Senior Vice President, Capital Group Private Client Services

A discussion on the CFP Board Center for Financial Planning’s guides, "Financial Planning Career Paths: Building More Sustainable and Successful Businesses," and “Guide to Careers in Financial Planning,” and how firms recruit, onboard, and retain the next generation of financial planners.


Introduction: Eddy Demirovic, Director of Talent Pipeline, CFP Board Center for Financial Planning

Moderator: Mark Tibergien, Independent Director, Pathstone; Chair, CFP Board Center for Financial Planning Workforce Development Committee

Panelists: Ronald J. Adams, Vice President, Field Diversity & Inclusion, Northwestern Mutual; Michelle Balatero, CFP®, Assistant Vice President, Advisor Diversity & Inclusion, LPL Financial ; JoDee Klinker, Director of Talent Acquisition, Carson Group; Danielle Swancey, CFP®, Manager, Financial Advisor Development Program, Vanguard

Senior executives share best practices discussed during the CFP Board Center for Financial Planning’s first-of-its-kind convenings for diversity and inclusion (D&I) practitioners within and outside of the financial services industry.


Moderator: Dawn Harris, Director, Diversity & Inclusion, CFP Board Center for Financial Planning

Panelists: Raymone Jackson, CLU, Global Head of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, T. Rowe Price; Esu Ma’at, Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer, Orlando Magic; Crystal Hardie-Langston, MBA, Principal and Chief Diversity Officer, Human Resources, Vanguard

Day One Final Thoughts & Recap
Cristina Santos, Senior Vice President, Diversity Equity & Inclusion, Capital Group

A welcome to day two of the Summit followed by the opening keynote, a presentation on “TWO AMERICAN FINANCIAL PLANS: The Next 50 Years of the Racial Wealth Gap and What You Can Do About It,” including key financial planning interventions that can eliminate the racial wealth gap.


Introduction:Welcome: Doug King, CFP®, Chair, CFP Board

Opening Keynote: Two American Financial Plans
Introduction: Joseph V. Maugeri, CFP®, Managing Director of Corporate Relations, CFP Board
Speakers: Kamila Elliott, CFP®, President, GRID 202 Partners, Chair-Elect, CFP Board ; Brent Kessel, Co-Founder and CEO, Abacus Wealth Partners

During a “TED Talk” like presentation, professionals of color share their career experiences and describe the challenges and opportunities they experience as a person of color in the profession.


Introduction: Diana Cheung, MSF, Wealth Planning Associate, Ballentine Partners

Speaker: Marcus P. Malonson, CFP®, CIMA®, C(k)P®, CPFA, CRPC®, Senior Vice President, Wealth Management Advisor, Merrill Lynch Wealth Management

A workshop for CFP Board Registered Program faculty and staff on recruiting and developing a diverse pipeline of students for these programs.


Danny Harvey, Finance Instructor and Director of Financial Planning Program, College of Business, Prairie View A&M University

Presented by Ballentine Partners. A panel discussion on how various professionals, including CFP® professionals, can help Black consumers begin and progress in their wealth journey.


Moderator: Coventry Edwards-Pitt, CFP®, CFA®, Partner and Chief Creative Officer, Ballentine Partners

Panelists: Akeiva Ellis, MSFP, CPA/PFS, CFP®, ChSNC®, Financial Education Specialist, Ballentine Partners; Lori Anne Douglass, Esq., Founding Partner, Douglass Rademacher LLP; Robin L. Washington, CPA, Board Member, Alphabet, Inc., Honeywell International, Inc., and; Wesley V. Thompson, President and Chief Executive Officer, M Financial Group

Presented by Vanguard. A panel discussion that will highlight the elements of how to measure inclusive culture, the unique role and responsibility that managers have to ensure culture is inclusive, and how firms can hold managers accountable.


Moderator: George Centeno, CFP®, Regional Director, Vanguard Personal Advisor Services

Panelists: Matt Aaron, CFP®, RICP®, ChFC®, Founder & CEO, Lux Wealth Planning, Northwestern Mutual; Johnathan Shaw, CFP®, Executive Director of Wealth Management, Sub Complex Manager, Morgan Stanley Wealth Management; Emily Millsap, CFP®, Senior Director of Financial Planning, Facet Wealth

A discussion on the launch of the new Financial Literacy Institute (FLi), a partnership between Delaware State University and Charles Schwab Foundation, and how financial literacy can positively impact a community and function as a precursor to a more educated consumer base.


Introduction: Mary Kay Svedberg, Director of Education, CFP Board

Speaker: Nandita Das, Ph.D., CFA®, CFP®, EA, RICP®, CFP-Board Registered Program Director and Professor of Finance, Delaware State University; Founder-Owner, Das Financial Health, LLC

A panel on best practices at RIAs for attracting, sourcing, onboarding, developing, and retaining diverse talent.


Moderator: Leslie Y. Tabor, Director, Advisor Services Business Consulting & Education, Charles Schwab & Co. Inc.

Panelists: Jill O’Connell, Senior Vice President, Head of Talent, Edelman Financial Engines; Marianela Collado, CFP®, CPA/PFS, Co-Owner and Senior Wealth Advisor, Tobias Financial Advisors; Craig S. Jones, JD, MBA, CPWA®, Senior Wealth Advisor and Managing Director, Rocky Mountain Region, The Colony Group

Presented by Merrill Lynch Wealth Management. Merrill’s first-of-its-kind research, titled Diverse Viewpoints: Understanding Affluence in the U.S., aims to better understand how individuals in diverse communities achieve success and grow their wealth, including their goals, motivations, and financial mindsets. Join a panel of Merrill executives to learn more about the research findings and additional efforts to prioritize diversity and inclusion.


Moderator:Jennifer Auerbach Managing Director, Head of Acquisition, Strategic Growth and Retention, Merrill Lynch Wealth Management

Panelists: Lindsay Hans, Division Executive for the Mid Atlantic Division, Merrill Lynch Wealth Management; Kenneth Correa, CFP®, Managing Director, Merrill Lynch Wealth Management; Adrienne D. Hughes, National Client Experience Executive, Merrill Lynch Wealth Management

A workshop on how to practice racial and gender equity allyship and more at your firm.

Speakers: Rickie Taylor, Regional Director, Retirement Plan Consultants; Association of African American Financial Advisors (Quad A); Elissa Ellis Sangster, MBA, CEO, Forté Foundation; Whitney Tome, Principal and Head of Beyond Diversity Strategies, The Raben Group