6 Women Making Their Mark and Opening Doors in the Financial Sector

Women have lately been given more opportunities to make their mark in the upper echelons of the financial sector. Although we, as a society, have not yet achieved true gender equality, these 6 women are helping to pave the way.

Candace Browning

Ms. Browning earned her MBA from Columbia University and began her career in 1990 as an airline industry analyst for Merrill Lynch & Co. By 2003 she had risen through the ranks and became the leader of their global research team. In 2008 when Merrill Lynch and Bank of America merged, she kept her position only now with a team of more than 630 financial analysts worldwide. She has been named to American Banker's "Top 25 Most Powerful Women in Finance" list for the last ten years.

Joyce Chang

A scholarship from her childhood employer, the Des Moines Register, allowed Ms. Chang to follow her dreams of better education at Phillips Exeter Academy. From there she received her education from Columbia and Princeton Universities. She began her career at Salomon Brothers in the 1990s, working with emerging markets. Currently, she leads JP Morgan's strategic research team. She is one of Wall Street's most respected analysts.

Mellody Hobson

Ms. Hobson is currently the Co-CEO and President of Ariel Investments, one of America's oldest and best-known minority owner investment firms. Known as much for her work to bring diversity into the workplace as for her business acumen, she uses speeches and the boardroom to encourage companies to become "color brave", to acknowledge and embrace the differences between the races instead of pretending they don't exist. She also sits on the Board of Directors at both Starbucks and JP Morgan.

Yie Hsin Hung

Ms. Hung earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Northwestern and then her MBA from Harvard. Currently, she is the senior vice president of New York Life Insurance Co. as well as CEO of New York Life Investment Management. Since taking over as CEO in 2015, the value of the assets under their management has tripled. She brings her skills to the non-profit venue as well and sits on the boards of the New England Center for Children and Next for Autism.

Abigail Johnson

It may seem like Ms. Johnson had a head start in her career at Fidelity since she is the third generation of her family to run this privately owned company. The truth is, she still had to work hard and battle sexism in her rise to the top. She graduated from Harvard Business School and went right to work at Fidelity. She made a point of working in almost every division of the company so that by the time she rose to the top she understood all the intricacies of each.

Kathleen Murphy

Ms. Murphy began her career in the 1990s as an attorney for Aetna. From there she moved to CEO of ING U.S. Wealth Management before becoming the President of Fidelity's personal investing division, the position she currently holds. She is driven to bring gender equality to corporate America and is active in Fidelity Women's Leadership Fund, which seeks out successful companies that prioritize the advancement and leadership of women.