Investments & Wealth Foundation: Championing Diversity in Financial Advisory Profession

Posted by Allison Edmondson, Director of Communications

May 17, 2022 3:00:00 PM

Denver, CO  —  May 17, 2022  — The Investments & Wealth Institute (the Institute) today announced the creation of the nonprofit Investments & Wealth Foundation (the Foundation), to grow and support a more diverse workforce within the financial advisor profession through scholarships for the Institute’s Certified Investment Management Analyst® (CIMA®), Certified Private Wealth Advisor® (CPWA®) and Retirement Management Advisor® (RMA®) certifications.
“The Investments & Wealth Foundation scholarship program enables women, diverse professionals, and next-generation leaders to elevate their careers and contribute to our profession,” said Kevin Sánchez, CIMA®, CPWA®, CFP®, Investments & Wealth Foundation board chair and senior institutional consultant, UBS Consulting. “The Institute believes all advisors should have equal access and opportunity to specialized education and advanced certifications. The Foundation endeavors to reduce the financial barrier to entry for eligible professionals through scholarships.”

The mission of the Foundation is to accelerate career advancement of target professionals who are currently underrepresented in the profession, thereby fostering sustainable diversity within the financial advisor profession. The costs of the Foundation are underwritten by the Investments & Wealth Institute and 100% of donations to the Foundation support scholarship.
In 2020, the Institute started a certification scholarship fund to accelerate the growth and development of a diverse and sustainable financial advisor workforce by ensuring that every advisor, large or small, experienced or new, has access to a variety of advanced education and certification programs that will allow them to best advise and serve their clients.
More than 400 applications for scholarship assistance have been received since the inception of the Institute’s scholarship fund in 2020. The percentage of female candidates has grown 18%, while the percentage of candidates of color has increased by 109%. In 2021, the Institute awarded more than $344,00 to 250 students seeking CIMA®, CPWA® and/or RMA® certification. To date, 95 scholars have completed their certification thanks to the scholarship they received.
The demand for scholarship support was the impetus for the creation of the Foundation, which can now accept tax-deductible donations.
The Institute has also hired Barbara Talisman, CFRE, of Talisman Partners as the Investments & Wealth Foundation director to lead the Institute in launching the Foundation and cultivating a robust donor-centered fundraising program.
“Barbara brings many decades of fundraising experience and nonprofit management to the Foundation,” said Sean R. Walters, CAE®, chief executive officer of the Investments & Wealth Institute. “She is known for her results-oriented and hands-on service to the nonprofit community. We’re looking forward to seeing her expertise in campaigns, donor cultivation programs, major gift solicitation and corporate partnerships yield results for the Foundation that allow us to foster a profession where financial advisors from all backgrounds thrive.”
Talisman’s clients include human service, healthcare, education, international affairs and arts organizations. She started fundraising on political campaigns and began her nonprofit fundraising with community-based organizations nationally and locally. Talisman is an Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) master trainer. She has written for influential industry publications including “Fund Raising Management,” “Fundraising Success,” “Advancing Philanthropy” and “Clout.” A member of the AFP, Talisman was honored with the President’s Award from the AFP Chicago chapter for her outstanding service to the chapter and to the fundraising profession.


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