Four Female Forces in Finance

Four Female Forces in Finance

Three New Members Join the RTSWS Board of Directors

A trio of influential women in finance joined our board in January.

The new board members are:
  • Judy Ricketts, Managing Director and Head of Investor Services at TD Ameritrade
  • Christine Ritchie, Director of Compliance at CarVal Investors
  • Jennifer Knight, Senior Investment Analyst at Hospital Corporation of America, (HCA)

Judy Ricketts

Judy Ricketts has served on the RTSWS advisory board for the last two years. She has been instrumental in expanding RTSWS programming to additional cities across the U.S., helping secure funding and recruiting volunteers from TD Ameritrade, where she leads nearly 2,000 associates in the retail client experience contact centers. She was a founding member of TD Ameritrade’s Diversity and Inclusion efforts. Judy also sits on the boards of the Women’s Fund of Omaha and the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association’s (SIFMA) Diversity and Inclusion Committee. Judy earned a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Christine Ritchie, CFA, CFP

Christine played a major role in bringing RTSWS to Minneapolis, encouraging CarVal Investors to sponsor and support the program locally. She serves as Director of Compliance for CarVal Investors in Minneapolis. Prior to joining CarVal, she held a variety of leadership roles at Pine River Capital Management, Goldman Sachs and Merrill Lynch across the globe, including New York City and Hong Kong. Christine currently co-chairs the 100 Women in Finance Minneapolis chapter. She earned both a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in Accounting from University of Texas at Austin.

Jennifer Knight

Jennifer Knight started volunteering with RTSWS in 2017, bringing the program to two public schools in Nashville. She has more than 30 years of experience in investments and accounting. As a Senior Investment Analyst in the Treasury Department at HCA Healthcare in Nashville, Jennifer manages financial reporting, budgeting and accounting of the HCA Hope Fund, the HCA Foundation and HCA’s insurance subsidies. Prior to HCA, she worked in various roles at Bank of America. Jennifer earned both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in Accounting from Harding University.


Carrie Green, CFA, MA, RTSWS 2019 Board Chair

Carrie has served on the RTSWS board of directors since 2017. As Director of Equities for the Tennessee Consolidated Retirement System (TCRS), she oversees a variety of equity portfolios valued at over $49.6 billion. She is the first woman to lead an asset class for the Tennessee Department of Treasury. Carrie also serves on the Economics and Finance Advisory Board at Middle Tennessee State University. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Lambuth University and a master’s in Economics from Middle Tennessee State University.

Momentum is building and plans are underway to expand our reach in 2019



Fort Worth
Los Angeles
New York City 

St. Louis

Minneapolis Students

Minneapolis Students


Students from Hopkins High School listening to Jody Gunderson, Managing Principal of CarVal Investors, during their field trip to the CarVal Investor offices in Minneapolis, MN.

Last month, students from Hopkins High School in Minnesota went on their semester-end RTSWS field trip to the CarVal Investors offices. CarVal Investors was founded by Cargill in 1987. In 2006, CarVal Investors became an independent subsidiary of Cargill, allowing the firm to expand more broadly as a fund manager.

The field trip represented the second of three components of the RTSWS academic year-long programAfter a series of five on-campus RTSWS financial workshops led by female financial pros from CarVal, the students got to step into the shoes of their volunteer classroom instructors and meet some of their colleagues. The girls quickly took seats at the table to learn more about CarVal Investors’ global operations in Europe, Asia and Latin America. Later this month, the girls will participate in the third RTSWS component, our Mentor/Protege sessions during their spring semester. 



The girls took a deep dive into Alternative Investments as they learned about CarVal’s niche investment strategies which include:

  • Market Dislocations
  • Distressed Debt
  • Undervalued Investments 
  • Credit Intensive Assets 
  • Fundamental Analysis
  • Restructuring 
The students then took a tour of the trading floor after which they broke into smaller groups to attend breakout sessions on:
  • Investments 
  • Career and Compensation
  • Operations and Data


Some of those who shed light on their workday lives and career paths included:
  • Xiaoyu Gu, Analyst, Investments 
  • Angie Fenske, Managing Director, Investments 
  • Stephanie Matz, Director, Investments 
  • Katie Maier, Director, Human Resources 
  • Christine Ritchie, Director, Compliance (and new RTSWS BOD member)
  • Ann Folkman, Managing Director, Global Marketing and Corporate Communications  

Jody Gunderson, (l) Managing Principal, CarVal Investors with Maura Cunningham, Founder, RTSWS


The evening before the students’ field trip,15 women got together for dinner to learn what they can do at their firms to increase female recruitment efforts. Jody Gunderson and Maura Cunningham took questions from the invited guests.
It was a lively and purposeful evening filled with dialog and action steps on how to get the word out to their office colleagues about the absence of women in business classes at the high school level. Dr. Mary Daugherty, Senior Fellow in Applied Finance at The University of St. Thomas, gave a first-hand account of how few women are in finance and economics classes – usually only one in ten students is a woman. (You’ll hear more from Mary in an upcoming video interview. Stay tuned!) 

Dr. Mary Daughtery

Thank you, CarVal Investors! 

You’re what making a difference in Minneapolis  looks like.

Raleigh Students

Raleigh Students

Teacher comments on RTSWS program

(We can’t say it any better than Dan!) 

“The students had a great experience here, visiting with a diverse panel of female leaders and experiences throughout the day – hands-on experiences in a corporate office in which they learned about different aspects of operations and sales, finance, management and technology.

Learning about professional females’ careers and the roads that they traveled, their success stories – the young ladies really liked hearing directly from them and taking away from their experiences. And at the heart of the matter all day, 
it was about mentorship and networking and building relationships to be successful.

In terms of managing their money – personally as well as professionally – the classroom portion of RTSWS, they’re bringing in the real world use of mathematics and showing them what they need to do in terms of accomplishing goals, both financially and otherwise – will certainly help them as they progress throughout their academic and personal lives.”
– Daniel McCoy, Business/Marketing Teacher, Panther Creek HS


Panther Creek High School

Students from Panther Creek High School in Raleigh, NC visited the Mediant  offices in Cary, NC. This was their RTSWS semester-end field trip. The field trip represents the second of three components of the RTSWS academic year long program. 

Mediant handles the investor communications life cycle – including proxy statements, corporate actions, regulatory reports and prospectus services. The students learned about Mediant’s clients including brokers and banks, corporate issuers, funds and alternative investments and investment advisors. The students spent the day learning about the legal aspects of investing, fintech, proxies, impact of corporate actions and IPO’s. They learned too, that stock shareholders have the right to vote on matters of corporate policy as well as who will compose the members of a company’s board of directors. Great lesson on equity ownership.



Panel Discussion

Four leading women from a cross section of financial institutions stretching from New York, NY to Charlotte, NC joined us as guest panelists for a lively discussion on women in finance and the job opportunities that are waiting for them. 
  • Rosemary Lissenden, Director, Credit Suisse, NC
  • Bridget Hughes, Sales Director, Donnely Financial Solutions, NY
  • Ann Richmond, Chief Operating Officer, Davenport & Co, VA
  • Tonya Belfiel Tyson, Senior Vice President/Senior Manager, BB & T Securities, VA
Students networked with these women and other financial professionals in the room. They heard first hand about the rewards of being in the financial services field and were given a “heads up” that they will be in the minority when they reach their college economics and finance classes.
Sherry Moreland, President and COO of Mediant was on hand on this day as she moderated the guest panelists on a discussion which included the gender pay and investment gap, what hiring managers look for in candidates, and what is the single most important piece of advice for high school students looking to get into the financial services industry.


Volunteer comments on the behavioral change in girls as they go through the RTSWS programming

(Click on video above)
“It was an amazing experience. Initially, of course, the girls were very quiet, but the more we dug into the content, the more I could see their brains turning, the more questions they began to ask, the more research they did on their own, and they would actually come in the following week with questions. They would look up ticker symbols, they would follow stock prices. So many of them asked me about investments. Some of them actually had investments at home that they were working on with their own parents.”
                                          – Sharde McCorgle, Corporate Actions Manager, Mediant




Student comments

“I think that so many girls are just uninformed about the financial services industry.  They just think it’s intimidating because most girls don’t like math… and they think it’s hard or boring. But, I think that the more you know about it and the more you see that it’s not as hard as you think it is, that you can become better at it and you can learn to become good at it.”
                                       -Angelina Ready, Student, (Junior) Panther Creek HS



Thank you, Mediant!

Next time, we’re sending you a cape. Thanks for your hero-sized gift.




Thirteen Cities Coast to Coast

Atlanta, GA
Charlotte, NC
Chicago, Il
Fort Worth, TX
Los Angeles, CA
Merrimack, NH
Minneapolis, MN
Nashville, TN
New York City, NY
Omaha, NE
Raleigh, NC
Sacramento, CA
St. Louis, MO

With your financial help, we can educate more girls across the U.S. on the benefits of being financially independent and on how they can make an impact on the world’s stage through a career in finance.


Sacramento Students

Sacramento Students

McClatchy and Rosemont High Schools

Students from McClatchy and Rosemont High Schools went on their semester end RTSWS field trip to the California State Teachers’ Retirement System(CalSTRS) offices in Sacramento, CA. They were welcomed by financial professionals from CalSTRS and California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS).  CalSTRS manages a $190 billion portfolio of investments; CalPERS manages $360 billion.

The field trip represents the second of three components of the RTSWS academic year-long program. Those components are:

  1. Series of five hands-on financial projects in their classrooms led by female financial professionals in the fall 
  2. Wall Street Experience Field Trip at the end of the fall semester
  3. Mentor/Protege program held during the spring semester 


Asset Classes

The girls visited and heard from female financial professionals in the following CalSTRS asset classes:
  • Global Equity
  • Fixed Income Investment Operations 
  • Alternatives (Private Equity, Real Estate, Inflation Sensitive)
  • Risk Mitigating Strategies and Innovation and Risk
The girls learned how CalSTRS provides retirement, disability and survivor benefits for California’s prekindergarten through community college educators and their families. And they learned how CalPERS manages pension and health benefits for California public employees, retirees, and their families. They also learned about the type of investments that are managed in each asset class and what skills are needed to work there. The pros discussed with the students what was impacting recent market action — Fed policy, interest rate forecasts and trade tariffs. 

Local NBC Affiliate TV Station

Leticia Ordaz, Anchor/Reporter from station KCRA joined us for the day at CalSTRS. They wanted to learn more about how RTSWS and CalSTRS/CalPERS are increasing the number of fearless girls. Click on the image below to see the segment.

 Joint Panel Discussion with CalSTRS and CalPERS

After their tour to the various asset class departments, five women shared where they came from and how they got to CalSTRS and CalPERS. These included:
  • June Kim, Investment Director, CalPERS
  • Katie Carl, Investment Officer, CalPERS
  • Adriana Gutierrez, Investment Officer, CalSTRS
  • Harmony Lu, Investment Officer, CalSTRS 
And, Brenda Dulger-Sheikin, Senior Vice President, State Street was invited to join the panel. State Street commissioned the Fearless Girl statue who recently found a new home opposite the New York Stock Exchange in NYC. (Click on video below.) 


Volunteer Comments

“This is something I feel very strongly about–increasing the gender diversity in the investment industry and we need to start early so RTSWS is a great program…  Slowly but surely we are trying to move the dial in this industry and hopefully affect that change. It is exciting to see the amount of interest with the volunteers that we have and then as more people find out about it, more people are interested.
  – June Kim, Investment Director, CalSTRS
“At the end of the semester I saw the girls come together and share a presentation so they learned how to be leaders, they each learned how to be financial planners and think on their own and give advice and consultation to their client, Janella… 
It was a great opportunity for me and my colleagues at CalPERS to partner with CalSTRS. We are sister retirement systems so it was a great opportunity for me to get to know some of my CalSTRS peers better. We often work together on other things.  This gives us a more personal relationship where we have a commonality or a bond to be able to work together for a better future.”
– Kami Niebank, Deputy Chief Compliance Officer, CalPERS

Student Comments

“I take math more seriously. If finance is a career I want to go into, it shows that math is an every day, all day thing that we will come across.” 

– Darla Gomez, 17 year old, Rosemont High School

School Administrator Comments

Our women are the future. We hear it. We see it now from Michelle Obama and the work that she has done, from Oprah and the things she’s doing. From amazing teachers and the people at CalSTRS who are doing great work—to be able to get our young ladies into a place where they can learn about finance, learn about investment, understand STEM is huge because there are so many opportunities out there for our young ladies to be in a role that they just don’t know about, so sometimes we miss out on the opportunity…

The vocabulary is huge, being able to talk through things. The other swing is that women do do these jobs. Coming into this space and being able to see women leading is huge and sometimes we don’t understand the importance of being able to put people in front of the students and show them this is something you can do. We are not just telling you that you can do it, we are showing the girls that they can do this job.” 

-Marcus Strother, Director of Youth Development, Sacramento City Unified School District

Thank you, CalSTRS and CalPERS.

You’re what making a difference looks like.

RTSWS is moving girls forward in the field of finance in 13 U.S. cities–more than 1,700 students and counting. 

Merrimack, NH Students

Merrimack, NH Students

Students Learn About Asset Management


Before taking a tour of the Institutional Bond and Money Market trading floor at Fidelity Investments in Merrimack, Tressa Webb, Vice President Fidelity Investments, gave our students a little insight into what each department manages and how she likes learning new things everyday at her job. Click on the video above.

Merrimack High School visits Fidelity Investments



Students from Merrimack High School, located in New Hampshire, visited one of the thirteen U.S Fidelity Investments regional offices. There are over 5,000 employees at this office. Last year, our Dallas RTSWS students got to visit the Westlake, TX Fidelity campus.  

The students were warmly welcomed by Fidelity Investments executives. They started the day hearing about Fidelity Investment’s internal initiatives to get more women into financial fields and then were whisked off to division tours and department huddles. 

Office tours included visits to the:

  • Bond and Money Market Trading Floor 
  • Work Solutions Site


The students then participated in a panel discussion about the various U.S. locations and divisions of Fidelity Investments, job opportunities, day in the life stories, college majors/minors and career paths. 

Panelists included (l to r)

  • Maura K. Cunningham, Founder of RTSWS (Moderator)
  • Catriona Martin, Portfolio Manager, Fidelity Investments
  • Lisa Magnuson, Manager, Diversity & Inclusion Programs, Fidelity Investments
  • Kathleen McQuiggan, Wealth Advisor, Artemis Financial Advisors & CFP Board Special Advisor

3 Components to RTSWS Academic Year-Long Program 

RTSWS students learn finance for a full academic year 
  1. Fall- Five classroom hands-on workshops led by female financial professionals
  2. Fall – Wall Street Experience Field Trip at the end of the fall semester 
  3. Spring – Mentor/Protege program held during the spring semester, January through April 

Special Advisor on Gender Diversity for the CFP Board, Kathleen McQuiggan, came up from Boston to share her career insights with our students


Shout out to the CFP Board in getting the word out about the volunteer opportunities that are available with RTSWS. RTSWS has been partnering with the CFP Board since 2016. We’re both committed to getting more women into the financial services industry.

We are grateful to the CFP Board for promoting the skills based volunteer opportunities that RTSWS has across the thirteen U.S. cities we serve.

Let us know if you have any interest in volunteering as a mentor or instructor to the next generation of financiers by clicking here.

Student Comments

“I enrolled in Rock the Street, Wall Street because my friend talked to me about it in class one day, and I was really inspired by the opportunity to see women in finance and business, and the mentorship opportunities, and to be able to look up to these women in high level roles. It’s a good opportunity for me to learn more about this field, and see if that’s something that I want to go in to… 

In a lot of ways, especially with stuff that we’ve learned in the program, women are less involved in the STEM fields and things relating to finance, so any way that we can kind of get ahead and educate ourselves to handle our money the best way possible, I think is so important. And to fight any kind of stigma or boundaries that come with being women, I think we should be able to handle ourselves and be able to take care of money in our own way.”                    – Cassie Child, Merrimack HS

Thanks Fidelity Investments!

You can’t see them, but our students are totally doing a happy dance.
New York City Students

New York City Students


“In the after school sessions (held on campus), the students were absolutely enraptured by the mentors who came and spoke with them each week. I found it both engaging and fascinating in listening to the students talk amongst themselves. The fact that they were talking about finance was spectacular!

As we rode the subway down today to visit our field trip location to Nasdaq, the students were saying this is the first time they could really talk about money and financial planning. It was too hard and embarrassing to talk about with their parents, so this is the first time they had the opportunity. It was an amazing moment.

Budgeting and finance discussions, and really taking ownership of personal finance, isn’t something that is included in the standard high school curriculum and to do so in the company of other young women with female mentors, it’s an extraordinary opportunity. It will serve them all their lives.”

– Lisa Siegmann, Acting Director, Hunter College Campus Schools, NY


We needed two field trip sites!

So many students from Hunter College High School enrolled in RTSWS this year, that we had to split the class in half to accommodate all 57 students at two field trip locations! 


First up, Nasdaq. One set of students went on their semester end RTSWS  field trip to the Nasdaq offices on Lower Broadway to get a glimpse of real-time market action. There, they had the opportunity to meet with women from various firms to hear about investing in the stock market as well as the varied job opportunities across the financial services spectrum. 

The women who made a difference in these girls’ lives on this day included:

  • Alice Wang, Managing Director, Global Head of CIB Operational Risk, JPMorgan 
  • Jill Malandrino, Global Markets Reporter, Nasdaq
  • Farah Sodhi, AVP, Business Unit CFO, Nasdaq
  • Yulia Oleynik, CTP, Treasury Specialist, Nasdaq
  • Yordanka llieva, Senior Strategic Investment Associate, Nasdaq Ventures
  • Angela Matheny, Head of Diverse Manager Equity, Colonial Consulting


Further uptown, our second set of students were hosted by Fiduciary Trust International at their Park Avenue offices. Here, the girls heard about the benefits of being a financially independent woman, capital raising, portfolio management, business management and how to navigate internship opportunities.

Our career sherpas at this field trip site included:

  • Kristin Mott, Managing Director, Seamax Capital Management
  • May Tong, Portfolio Manager, Franklin Templeton Investments
  • Mandy McClung, Vice President, Associate Complex Manager, Morgan Stanley  
  • Charlotte Beyer, Founder, Institute for Private Investors
  • Stephanie Weiss, Client Advisor, Bernstein Global Wealth Management
  • Charmaine Chin, Managing Director, K2 Advisors, Franklin Templeton Investments
  • Amanda Vardi, Vice President, Relationship Manager at Fiduciary Trust Company International 
  • Meredith Johnson, Estate Settlement Associate, Franklin Trust Company

Principal Quest Foundation (PQF) 

Some of the most often questions PQF hears from its members and guests are the following:  
  • Do I dare? 
  • Where does money figure in my values? 
  • How closely aligned are my values to my behavior? 
Led by Charlotte Beyer, (above), PQF attempts to address these deep-seated inquiries. PQF supports innovative education and creative mentoring programs for girls and women. Rock The Street, Wall Street is fortunate to be sponsored by PQF this academic year at Hunter College High School. We are honored to have been chosen by them to lead the way to girls’ better understanding of how finance fits into a lifetime of freedom.

Thanks Principle Quest Foundation!

Our students have started an unofficial PQF fan club.

Thanks, too, to the CFP Board, Abacus Planning Group, Douglass Winthrop Advisors, Wealthstream Advisors, Morgan Stanley and March Altus Capital Management whose female financial professionals gave so generously of their time and talent this past semester in the Hunter College High School classrooms to teach our students the importance of owning their financial lives!

We couldn’t do it without you.