The cultures and diversity of investment firms have increasingly become important areas of focus. WIN will explore asset management industry perspectives on DEI and various initiatives companies are taking to drive change.
Vice President, Corporate Governance Director
Segal Marco Advisors
Ms. O’Brien is a Vice President in Segal Marco Advisors’ Chicago office. Ms. O’Brien has extensive experience in shareholder advocacy and specializes in engaging companies on behalf of investors.
Ms. O’Brien joined Segal Marco Advisors in 2011 and currently serves as Vice President, Corporate Governance Director where she leads corporate engagements on behalf of Segal Marco’s clients and oversees the proxy voting service. Her work in shareholder advocacy began in 2003 as a Research Analyst for the Investor Responsibility Research Center. Since then she has specialized in engaging companies on behalf of investors. Prior to Segal Marco, Ms. O’Brien was Head of Engagement at Conflict Risk Network, where she held dialogues with companies operating in Sudan and other conflict zones.
Ms. O’Brien served on the Council of Institutional Investors Corporate Governance Advisory Council from 2015 to 2018. She is the Chair of Segal Marco’s ESG Committee.
Ms. O’Brien received her M.A. from American University in Washington, D.C. and her B.A. from the University of Missouri-Columbia.
Published Works and Speeches:
- “Financial System Impacts of the Rise of Passive Management,” The National Conference on Public Employee Retirement Systems (NCPERS) – Annual Conference, January 2021
- Segal Marco Advisors “2020 Corporate Governance Report”
- “The Mainstreaming of ESG Investing,” International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans – U.S. Employer Outlook: Benefit Strategies for the Future Virtual Conference September 2020.
Managing Director and Global Head of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
Michelle Gadsden-Williams is the Managing Director and Global Head of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion for BlackRock. She is an award-winning global diversity executive, author, activist, producer and philanthropist with more than 25 years of experience as an advocate for equality within corporate America and a thought leader around diversity and inclusion. Michelle is a seasoned diversity practitioner with experience working in the consumer goods, pharmaceutical and financial services industries before transitioning to professional services in 2017.
Michelle is the former, Managing Director of Inclusion & Diversity for Accenture North America. She provided strategic direction, thought leadership and championed the development of an inclusive environment by integrating diversity practice into all aspects of the business. She has held positions of global responsibility in the diversity management arena by living in Switzerland for close to 10 years of her corporate career and managed staffing functions for large multi¬national corporations such as Credit Suisse, Novartis and Merck & Co, Inc. Prior to her tenure at Merck & Co., Inc, Michelle has also held positions in Human Resources and Product Development at Philips¬Van Heusen Corporation and Wakefern Food Corporation, both headquartered in New Jersey.
Michelle has acquired a multitude of community service awards and accolades for her work as a diversity practitioner. She has been recognized by Black Enterprise as one of the Top Executives in Corporate Diversity for 2019, 2018, 2017. The Reverend Al Sharpton recognized Michelle as a 2016 honoree at the National Action Network “Woman of Power” Luncheon, an honoree at the Black Institute Awards Gala in NYC and a 2015 Ebony Magazine Power 100 honoree. Throughout her career, Michelle has been profiled in Black Enterprise Magazine, Diversity Inc, Diversity Executive, Ebony, Essence, Fortune, History Makers, Heart & Soul, Jet, New Vision, Science Magazine, Sister to Sister, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Target Market News and was recognized as one of 40 Outstanding Executives Under 40 in America in 2006 by the Network Journal. Her other notable tributes include: being named the 2010 recipient of the Maya Way Award for Diversity Leadership by the incomparable Dr. Maya Angelou, receiving the 2008 Harvard Black Men’s Forum Businesswoman of the Year Award, accepting the Rainbow Push Coalition’s Bridge Builder Award by the honorable Reverend Jesse L. Jackson and also being recognized with an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters degree from Kean University for her outstanding personal and professional accomplishments in the field of diversity and inclusion. In 2013 Michelle was appointed as a member of the Global Advisory Council on Gender Parity for the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
Michelle earned a B.S. in Marketing, a B.A. in Communications from Kean College of New Jersey and an M.S. in Organizational Dynamics from the University of Pennsylvania. She is a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Incorporated and the Executive Leadership Council. Michelle serves on several boards including the Jackie Robinson Foundation, The Art Center in Pasadena, CA and a member of the Women’s Leadership Board of the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. Michelle and her husband, David Jamal Williams, live in New York City.
Nimisha Srivastava, CAIA
Senior Director – Global Head of Credit
Willis Towers Watson
Nimisha Srivastava, CAIA is Global Head of Credit Research at Willis Towers Watson. She has over 15 years of institutional investing experience, and oversees research efforts across traditional, alternative, and private credit. Nimisha is also a member of the US Management Committee, helping oversee the US Investment business. She also leads the firm’s Inclusion & Diversity research taskforce. Prior to joining WTW in 2014, Nimisha helped manage the credit portfolio for the Universities Superannuation Scheme, one of the largest pension schemes in the UK. She has authored numerous papers on fixed income, culture, and diversity in the asset management industry. She began her career at Deutsche Bank within global markets. Nimisha graduated with honors from Carnegie Mellon University with a B.S. in Mathematical Sciences and holds an MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management.
Tiffany Harrison is an Associate Director and Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Specialist at UBS. In this role, Tiffany is responsible for developing, implementing, executing, overseeing, and tracking the success of the global race and ethnicity strategy in the US. She works closely with the Americas DE&I Council, senior leaders, stakeholders, and employee resource groups to implement this strategy across divisions. Prior to her current role, Tiffany served as a Talent Acquisition and Diversity Partnership Manager for the UBS Junior & Graduate Talent programs. In that role, she developed and implemented strategies to attract and recruit diverse talent into the firm which included the creation of the early identification diversity program. Prior to joining UBS, Tiffany held numerous roles across human resources at JP Morgan Chase, Citi, and Credit Suisse. Tiffany recently completed the Advanced Diversity and Inclusion Certification at Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations. Tiffany is based in New York and enjoys baking, photography and traveling in her spare time.