How has WIPN had an impact on you and your career? Through the organization, I have had the opportunity to hear from women who have inspired and motivated me, leaving me with a feeling of empowerment to pursue opportunities without fear of inadequacy or self-doubt. I have also just had so much fun at each event, having the opportunity to meet kind, intelligent, and hilarious women!
What changes do you hope to see for women in the retirement industry in the next 5 –10 years? I would love for all women to feel HEARD! While I have seen major positive changes in my 16 years in the industry, I still often feel like my voice is sometimes lost.
How did you find out about WIPN? Thankfully, my employer is a supporter of WIPN, and I was invited to join by one of our many women in leadership.
What has been most important to your career so far – a mentor, a sponsor or both? I was fortunate to have a mentor who taught me the importance of personal development, finding passion and purpose in my career, and to not fear asking questions. She was leadership personified and had a huge impact on my personal and professional outlook.
How important is it for you to be a role model for the upcoming generations of women in the retirement industry? So important! We must ensure that future generations feel confident and emboldened. We must teach girls and women that they are strong and capable and encourage them to pursue their passions.
How has WIPN had an impact on you and your career? I joined WIPN a few years ago for the industry networking. I attended a variety of events and enjoyed each one. However, it was my friend and WIPN President, Jennifer Mulrooney, who extended a gracious and personal welcome to re-engage. She took the time to make me feel welcome at WIPN. Those who know Jennifer know that she’s a natural connector. WIPN has given me connection and community. Folks often say it, but the relationships and connections matter so incredibly much. I began my career in retirement plan conversions, then client services, and now sales. Especially in service and sales, those relationships and connections matter!
What changes do you hope to see for women in the retirement industry in the next 5-10 years? I’ve been in the retirement industry for 25 years and it has certainly evolved. My hope for the future is that women will be recognized for all the facets of their being, and that we will not be labeled or branded as one-dimensional characters because of a dominant trait or characteristic. We have so many facets. We are multi-taskers, chameleons, community leaders, teammates, mothers, wives, daughters, sisters, friends, connectors, and learners. This is what makes us so successful – our ability to be many things simultaneously.
What has been most important to your career so far – a mentor, a sponsor, or both? It takes both. I have three criteria for selecting mentors: I enjoy speaking with them, I trust them, and I respect their opinions. It makes sense that many of my mentors have become friends. Sponsors are equally important. Sometimes my mentors have been the people who found or connected me with my sponsors.
How important is it for you to be a role model for the upcoming generations of women in the retirement industry? It’s incredibly important to me. I’m a big believer in karma, so the energy and joy I create will come back to me. And it has, in spades. Others have been generous with their experiences, stories, and networks, so it is my responsibility to pay it forward. It’s each of our responsibilities to help another woman on the ladder. We have a really great community of women in this retirement industry and it’s truly a small world.
How did you originally find out about WIPN? A dear friend, Susan Otto, who is exceptionally curious and engaged, invited me to an event and I joined. Those friendships matter!
How has WIPN had an impact on you and your career? To me, building relationships is the best part of this business and WIPN has offered a wonderful way to meet other women in the industry and broaden out my network.
What changes do you hope to see for women in the retirement industry in the next 5 –10 years? Put simply, I hope to see more women in the retirement industry, making equal pay! We have made great strides in recent years, but it would be great to have a more even split between men and women.
What has been most important to your career so far – a mentor, a sponsor or both? Mentors have been more important in my career. I have been fortunate to call numerous people “mentor.” These individuals have significantly shaped my career in a multitude of ways, whether it was early on when I was just beginning to navigate the industry, or as I continue on my career path and the unique challenges that brings – they have been a great help. For that, I am grateful.
How important is it for you to be a role model for the upcoming generations of women in the retirement industry? In my mind, it is imperative that we all work to embody the characteristics of a strong role model, whether you are early on in your career or a seasoned veteran, particularly as we are still getting used to the “new normal” following the pandemic. Younger generations are navigating a working environment that is drastically different than the one many of us began our careers in. It is important we help them navigate accordingly.
How did you find out about WIPN? Through my colleagues who were existing WIPN members.