The past, the present & the possibilities

05-05-2017

The past, the present & the possibilities

Willowdale Photography

With new co-chairs, a new brand and a new name, the Cayman location of the organisation now known as 100 Women in Finance is celebrating a very successful past year and looking forward to an even more successful 2017, says Michelle Morgan, chair of the Communications Committee of the 100WF Cayman location.

In December 2016, the organisation previously known as 100 Women in Hedge Funds formally changed its name to 100 Women in Finance (100WF).

The move, applicable to all locations of the organisation globally, was made to recognise the way the body has changed over the years and also the more diverse role of women in many areas of finance.

This change recognised “our growth over 15 years to a global membership of 15,000 professionals across the finance and alternatives industries,” said Sonia Gardner, global chair of the 100WF board, in her annual letter to 100WF members. “The name change was supported by a brand refresh and redesign of our website, www.100women.org, a makeover that has infused our organisation with a new energy.”

This new energy has been felt during the monthly meetings of the Cayman Main Committee which was recently infused with volunteers who previously contributed on various subcommittees. This 14-person strong team now consist of members from firms such as Deloitte, DMS Governance, Harbour, Highwater, Intertrust, MaplesFS, Mourant Ozannes, MUFG Alternative Funds Services (Cayman) and Titan Technology, as well as various family offices.

New blood

This has not been the only significant change of late at the organisation. The Cayman location has also appointed new co-chairs.

Jo Cunningham, a partner at Maples Cayman, and Odette Samson, a partner at Deloitte & Touche Cayman, have been co-chairs of the Main Committee since 2013 when the Cayman location was established. They handed over their duties effective February 1, 2017 to Lise Baril, a director of Deloitte & Touche Cayman, and Monette Windsor, managing director of MUFG Alternative Funds Services (Cayman).

Amanda Pullinger, CEO of the global organisation, says: “The tremendous growth of our Cayman location since its founding in 2013 is thanks to the unsurpassed energy and teamwork of Lise Baril, Christina Bodden, Jo Cunningham, Nadia Hardie, and Nicola Stradling.

“We are grateful to Jo and Odette who jumped feet-first into their launch and built the location into what it is today, and have every confidence that the organisation will continue to thrive under Lise and Monette, whose involvement in the committee since its formation has been invaluable.”

Baril has served on the Main Committee of the 100WF Cayman location since its inception in 2013 and recently served as co-chair of the Cayman Philanthropy Committee.

“It’s an exciting time for 100WF in Cayman as we further the organisation’s global mission in looking to continue to strengthen opportunities for peer engagement, philanthropic and educational initiatives for professional women across the finance and alternative investments industries,” she says.

“It is an honour to be part of such an inspiring and energised organisation and I look forward to working with our committees on continuing to foster key initiatives within our community.”

Windsor has also served on the Main Committee of the 100WF Cayman location since its inception in 2013, as well as serving as co-chair of the Cayman Peer Engagement Committee since 2014.

“It’s been a great experience to date, working with all the women on the Main Committee to help launch and grow the location,” she says. “From the leadership, right down to the newest members, I’ve been inspired by their willingness to roll up their sleeves and really make an impact in the Cayman Islands.

“The past two years I’ve been focused on developing the Peer Engagement Committee, bringing women together to share knowledge and network. I really look forward to the coming year and co-chairing with Lise.”

Investing in the future

100WF has continued to deliver a full schedule of activities and programmes on Cayman designed to help and enhance the career prospects of its members and women in finance more generally.

One of these, NextGen Groups, was launched in 2016 in Cayman and a number of well attended events designed to build a talent pipeline of women who will become the future leadership of the industry have been held.

100WF NextGen Cayman hosts educational speaker events and more intimate gatherings in hopes of developing a community of strong young women who will ultimately guide each other through the progression of their careers. The main membership of 100WF Cayman facilitates the mentoring element of 100WF NextGen Cayman. Another initiative, the Investing in the Next Generation Initiative, aims to reach, inspire, and support young women at high school, university and business school who will become a talent pipeline for the future leadership of the industry.

In the UK, 100WF has partnered on philanthropic efforts with the Charities Forum of TRH The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry.

"100WF is proud to support the BCF to advance the work they do to help women and their families in our community." Leanne Golding

In 2016, HRH The Countess of Wessex visited the Cayman Islands as part of her role as Global Ambassador, 100WF’s Next Generation initiatives. Several 100WF members were lucky enough to lunch with her and hear her views on inspiring and mentoring young women looking to start their careers in finance and investments.

100WF isn’t just a resource for women beginning their careers—the organisation attracts women at the most senior levels of leadership, including Angels. Angels are financial supporters of the organisation who enjoy benefits including invitations to exclusive events, early access to registration for upcoming events, and other benefits. 100WF Cayman was happy to be able to increase membership in the Global Angels Program in 2016 and encourages all those considering such membership to participate in this worthwhile programme.

The Advisory Council also continued its good work last year. Created in 2012, this works to enhance global opportunities for our operating committees, share best practices and access to speakers, and create a forum for global conversation around industry topics. In January 2016, Christina Bodden was appointed to serve as a member of the Council out of the Cayman location.

Philanthropy

The Cayman location continued its work in philanthropy in 2016. Since its formation in 2013, the location has raised a total of $155,000 for local charities including the Cayman Islands Crisis Centre, Literacy is for Everyone, and its 2016 beneficiary, Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS).

“100WF brings a game-changing level of engagement to the organisations they support. The funds raised allow organisations to scale and deepen their community impact,” says Pilar Bush, chair of BBBS.

“2016 was an amazing year for BBBS in large part thanks to being the beneficiary of the generosity of 100WF,” adds Craig Smith, deputy chair of BBBS.

The Cayman group is now looking forward to supporting its 2017 beneficiary, the Breast Cancer Foundation (BCF).

Established in 2009, BCF is a local charity that provides support for breast cancer patients and survivors in the Cayman Islands. 100WF will be the official sponsor of BCF’s Wellness Program, which provides support and services that may otherwise be unavailable or financially out of reach to breast cancer patients and their families.

“The BCF is honoured to be selected as 100WF’s 2017 Cayman beneficiary. We are confident that the work of BCF and our flagship Wellness Initiative fully resonates with the 100WF brand and their 2017 theme of Women’s and Family Health,” says the BCF board of directors.

“We are looking forward to working closely with the 100WF Cayman location to implement this exciting opportunity and leverage the tremendous professional resources that 100WF provides.”
Leanne Golding, co-chair of the Cayman Philanthropy Committee, adds: “100WF is proud to support the BCF to advance the work they do to help women and their families in our community. We look forward to many successful fundraising events and activities together in 2017.”

The Barefoot Beach Gala, the Cayman Philanthropy Committee’s main fundraising event, took place on March 25 under the stars at the Royal Palms Beach Club. By popular demand, the Philanthropy Committee is also planning to bring back the Corporate Mixology Competition which sold out in record time last year.

Education and peer engagement

100WFCayman has brought speakers to the Islands such as Jane Buchan, CEO of PAAMCO; Anne Richards, global chief investment officer of Aberdeen Asset Management; Anne Marie Petach, chief financial officer of BlackRock; and Karissa Thacker, founder and president of Strategic Performance Solutions and the author of The Art of Authenticity.

“We have been elated with the quality of speakers and extraordinary events the Education Committee has been able to deliver to 100WF members in 2016,” says Yolanda Banks McCoy, co-chair of the Cayman Education Committee. “2017 will be no exception and we are looking forward to another dynamic year of reputable speakers and quality topics.”

2017 started out with Abigail Noble, CEO of non-profit The ImPact, speaking to a full house at Regal Cinemas on creating a purposeful career and leading a life of impact.

100WF also believes that achieving gender parity in senior leadership and investment roles will strengthen their industry and the broader global economy. Their targeted initiatives and professional development and networking opportunities help position women for success at every stage of their careers.

Peer advisory groups (PAGs) are intimate circles of female senior practitioners working in the same specialised areas. These groups, whose members are selected by invitation, provide an effective infrastructure for more tenured members to engage with one another and leverage collective wisdom, skills, and experience.

Currently the Cayman location has PAGs for auditors, lawyers and directors. In 2017 they will look to launch a fourth PAG for fund administrators.

In addition to these advisory groups, special events targeted to a subset of 100WF members are held. Events from the past year include a series of golf lessons, an image, brand and networking seminar and a hedge fund strategies session. For 2017 several special events, including two Global Angels events, are planned.

With a new brand and a potentially expanded membership, 100WF is looking forward to a bright 2017.

“We are very proud to have taken our location from a handful of members to over 600 in just four years,” says Samson. “The level of interest and involvement by professionals, from senior executives to our NextGen leaders, further serves to underscore the strength of our global professional network.”

Cunningham adds: “Now that we have all three areas of focus actively operating in Cayman, coupled with the launch of the NextGen group, we are set to contribute meaningfully to our industry and our community. We are excited to support our new co-chairs in reaching their goals for Cayman’s location over the next few years.”

Baril adds: “We’re very excited to be leading this group into 2017. We have a lot of energy and ideas. Now that Jo and Odette have laid the groundwork and established the structure and we’ve all had a few years to work together, we’re focused on doing all that we can to make it another great year.”

Windsor adds: “We hope that members will get more active in the organisation and attend our education and philanthropic events, and not just in Cayman but across the world, engage in peer engagement, and volunteer for any of the committees that form the areas of focus of our organisation.”


For further details of 100WF, contact cayman@100women.org

About 100 Women in Finance

100WF is a global network of professionals in the finance and alternative investment industries working together to empower women at every stage of their careers. Through peer engagement, philanthropic and educational initiatives, 100WF’s more than 15,000 members are making connections and creating opportunities that help to advance careers and strengthen our field.

About the Breast Cancer Foundation

The Breast Cancer Foundation is a not-for-profit charitable organisation established in 2009 to provide support for breast cancer patients. The Wellness Program in particular provides support services for patients, survivors and their families, including counselling, lymphatic massage, acupuncture and other services which are often outside the reach of patients and their families.

Cayman, Global, 100 Women in Hedge Funds, 100 Women in Finance, 100WF, NextGen, TRH, Duchess Cambridge, Prince Harry, Countess Wessex, Global Angels, BCF

Cayman Funds