Investing in Women: Understanding the Gender Gap

Vicki Escarra, Chief Executive Officer, Opportunity International; Laura Ferris Anderson, Managing Director, Chief Of Staff in the Office to Midwest Chairman, JP Morgan Chase & Co. Moderated by Niamh King.

Investing in women is a safe bet and can be a driving factor in economic growth. This has been a core tenet of the microfinance industry where women regularly start successful businesses and reinvest in their community. A similar story has played out in the US over the past 40 years; women now own 29 percent of all companies and are responsible for over 23 million jobs. Despite this positive growth, a significant global gender gap remains. Women in patriarchal societies around the world remain financially underserved, and in the US only five percent of small business loans go to female-owned businesses. What have we learned about investing in women, and what obstacles remain? Join The Chicago Council and an expert panel for an exploration of what the future holds for financing the world’s women.

Speaker Bio


11:45 a.m.
Registration and networking

12 noon
Lunch and discussion

1:30 p.m.

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Marjorie C. Benton
BNY Mellon Wealth Management
The Frankel Family Foundation
Kirkland & Ellis LLP
Ashley McCall
Avery McCall
Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, LLP
Susan J. Templeton
William Blair & Company