people of [different] races and more women. It’s been a longtime coming.
I’m seeing the trends, too. If I look at our staff members, forinstance, 37% are women, and that has been changing over thelast decade. Now, with all the race conversations occurring,we’re going to see a step up in the amount of change and thepace of change, which is what this industry drastically needs.
We’ve been focused on bringing younger people into thefinancial services industry. Now that push has really expanded to including more people and embracing firms that mayspecialize in the LGBTQ community or cater to the community with East Indian heritage. That’s being encouraged.We want to recruit firms like this because it brings us morediversity and inclusion.
I just saw that the SEC added people to a diversity andinclusion workshop. So as we see theindustry evolve, we’re going to see moreand more things like that, and that’swhat needs to happen so it can be afocus for all our businesses.
Our firms are evolving, in termsof those that I talk to through theFinancial Services Institute. This is aheightened area for us to change withinthe industry.
Webber: If we talk about it, it can bedone. We’ve seen it be successful. Thisis a terrible statistic — 2.5% of all CFPsidentify as Black or African American.That’s what the figure for women lookedlike many years ago.
We’ve got a recipe to at least start with. The first step isthrough role models — getting role models to show these segments that there are opportunities in our industry. Next, weneed to be very inclusive about making sure [members of thesecommunities] feel they are being listened to and heard. I knowwe can do it. It’s just going to take some work.
Burmeister: We all have advisors out their teaching classes, bringing awareness and raising awareness. If I addedup the number of our advisors who teach a class at a localcollege, it’s going to be a high number. I’d love to see thatto continue.
Dolber: The question I have thought about is are [advisors]building portfolios for clients with companies that are goodstewards of the environment, that are good citizens? This is anissue. How are they building their portfolios?
They look mainly at financial data, but are they looking atthe nonfinancial data, such as governance, the environmentand how they treat their workers?
Polls are showing that the investing public sees value inknowing that where they put their money is with good companies that care about their workers. That’s a start.
I plan on making a big push with our firm to educate advisors about building portfolios and including some nonfinancialaspects into their decision making, as well as talking to theirclients about it. They might be surprised that their clients seevalue in it.
Webber: I think you absolutely will.
Burmeister: And you’re starting to see technologies thatmake doing that analysis so much easier. Before, if you asked acompany, how many of your employees are female or AfricanAmerican, there was no way you were going to get that data.Now, we have access to that information, and we can publicizeit with our advisors.
Lion Street Financial, LLC.
President & CEO: John Burmeister
People: 192 advisors; 20, or 10%, are women; 19 homeoffice staff; 7, or 37%, are women; 219 total advisor staff;
154, or 70%, are women.
Assets under administration: $13 billion
Fee-based business: $1.2 billion of assets
Non-fee-based business: $11.8 billion of assets
Company data self-reported as of June 30, 2020
IA: Turning to lighter questions, what is your favorite show, favorite book andfavorite drink these days?
Burmeister: “Green Arrow” for a show; fiction by author John Sanford; and Tito’svodka and Sprite. I keep it simple.
Diachok: “Ozark;” fiction by James Rollins; and it’s gotta be Corona beer. I alwaysget a funny look at the store when I’m buying it.
Webber: “Game of Thrones; the non-fiction book “The Trident” by Jason Redman,based on his military experience; and mimosas.
Dolber: “Ozark;” “Subscribed” by Tien Tzuo, about the subscription-based economy;and water. I’ve been doing a lot of cycling with a mask on, and it’s hot out there!