How are you a champion for change?
My primary effort to change the private equity world – to make it friendlier to women – is to make money for our investors. There is too much talk about change right now and not enough action. Women-owned funds, such as mine, have to deliver top-tier performance for our investors. This is what will bring women credibility as investors, much more so than any publicity efforts or groups working for a cause will.
Tell us more about you.
When I was an investment banking analyst in New York in the early 1990s, the senior woman partner at the firm met with the women analysts and suggested that we all give up on having kids if we wanted careers in the industry; this is what she had done. It was shocking advice to hear. I have never forgotten that moment. Fast forward 25 years later, and I had a fourth child in 2016 in the middle of raising my first fund and also selling our first portfolio company for almost 9x our money. There are many moms (and dads) in the investment business, including senior leaders at large firms, founders, and rising stars. Generating returns for investors doesn’t have to mean self-sacrifice. This industry is changing.