By Lananh Nguyen and Max Abelson, September 10, 2020
Jacki Zehner, the first female trader to make partner inside Goldman Sachs Group Inc., was sitting at her kitchen table in Utah on Thursday morning when her husband told her he had good news: “Wall Street has their first female CEO.”
She was happy to hear that Jane Fraser will run Citigroup Inc.—mostly.
“To have a female at the top of a large financial institution is a step forward, but it’s a baby step,” she said in an interview Thursday morning. “Acknowledging that it’s never been true before, and it’s true now, is something to celebrate. That being said, it doesn’t mean that there’s systematic change. It represents one female.”
As congratulations rolled in across Wall Street for its newest boss, diversity advocates said the financial industry has a lot more to do to reach gender equality and pay equity. It’s taken this long to appoint the first, and only, female chief executive officer at one of the biggest U.S. banks, and efforts to get more women into senior management have been slow to boost representation…
Natasha Lamb, managing partner at Arjuna Capital LLC
“Citigroup is once again leading the way on gender equity, turning the boys’ club of Wall Street on its head. Let’s hope this is not just a one-off, but the beginning of a sustainable trend to increase diversity—both gender and racial—across the industry. Now, more than ever, we need strong leadership and resilient organizations that benefit from the innovation and out-performance diversity affords.”
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