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By Alaina Barron

Two years ago, a group of women at Backstop created an internal “Women in Technology” group as part of our employee-facing diversity and inclusion programming efforts. As a member of what we affectionately call “WIT,” I can tell you that I have personally derived a great deal of benefit from this. In addition to the psychological reassurance of knowing that Backstop supports diversity and inclusion, I also love having the opportunity to take a deep-dive into the most interesting and relevant topics of the day for women and gender minorities.

This year, we’re choosing to take an in-depth look at impact investing, and specifically whether investing in diversity and inclusion bolsters portfolio performance. Impact investing is truly one of those opportunities to play an active role in being an influential global citizen. We’re hosting an event on October 16, 2018 to find out whether investors focusing on diversity and inclusion are able to both benefit the greater good and their portfolios.

The event is titled, “The Impact of Impact Investing: How Diversity & Inclusion Have Bolstered Performance,” and is sure to generate lively discussion and deep insights. We are inviting anyone interested in this topic (and happens to be in Chicago on October 16) to attend! Our evening’s speakers include the “Who’s Who” of Chicago-based impact investors, including:     

  • Purva Patel, Senior VP at Nuveen Asset Management
  • Emily Lawrence, Senior Specialist at Northern Trust
  • Gerri Kahnweiler, Founder and Partner at InvestHER
  • Nicole Chavas, CEO at Greenprint Partners
  • Tyra Jeffries, Founder and CEO at CreativeCap Advisors
  • Debra Schwartz, Managing Director, Impact Investments at the MacArthur Foundation
Our moderator, Colleen Egan, Director of People & Culture at Clarity Partners, will engage our group of speakers to share real-world examples of the role of diversity and inclusion in investment success. They’ll also examine how impact investors measure social and financial impact, Impact Investing’s growing strategic importance in diverse portfolios, and best practices for unlocking capital for businesses focusing on diversity and inclusion.

The event promises to offer an informative and stimulating evening full of compelling conversation. You can register for this Backstop WIT event here. And please mention the event to any of your colleagues or acquaintances in the Chicago investment community who might find it interesting. Looking forward to seeing you there!