Mendoza School of Business

Notre Dame convenes first Women’s Investing Summit March 22

Published: March 6, 2019 / Author: Carol Elliott

Notre Dame convenes first Women’s Investing Summit March 22

The financial services industry, long a stronghold of male leaders and investors, increasingly is looking at the issue of the investment gap — a reference to the fact that women historically don’t invest as much as men do. Nor are they well represented at executive levels and boards of investment services companies.

As part of an effort to reverse these trends, the University of Notre Dame Institute for Global Investing (NDIGI) is hosting its inaugural Women’s Investing Summit 8 a.m.-4 p.m. March 22 in the Duncan Student Center’s Dahnke Ballroom.

With the theme of “Inspiring Tomorrow’s Ethical Investment Leaders,” the daylong summit features some of the top female executives in the financial investing industry from companies including Goldman Sachs, Lone Pine Capital, Putnam Investments and more.

“Anyone — men and women — can benefit from attending this conference. In order to close the gap, we feel strongly that by showcasing great female investors, our students will be inspired to enter the field and view a diverse workplace as not only a necessity, but normal,” said Erin Bellissimo, NDIGI managing director.

“Retention is a big issue in finance, and firm cultures need to adjust to support all types of employees,” she added. “NDIGI’s mission is to not only train and place our students in investing and finance, but to encourage them to make a difference in their firm cultures and the industry. The summit is another step in that direction and we look forward to its growth over the coming years.”

Bellissimo also emphasized that the title, “Women’s Investing Summit,” highlights the fact that it is an investment conference where 100 percent of the speakers are with investment or leadership responsibilities. The topics will center on investing and industry trends, not gender issues.

The event is open to the Notre Dame community. Current students, faculty and staff can attend for free; the cost is $40 for members of the Notre Dame alumni. Attendees must register on the summit’s website.

Women’s Investing Summit speakers include:

Katie Koch, global head of client portfolio management and business strategy for Goldman Sachs Asset Management (GSAM) Fundamental Equity, will present the opening talk on the market outlook. Koch, who was honored as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum in 2015, earned her bachelor’s degree from Notre Dame in English and economics.

Kate Sullivan, a four-time Emmy Award-winning journalist and current host of the PBS show “To Dine For With Kate Sullivan,” will present the lunchtime talk, “Investing in Yourself: Managing a Career for Personal Success.” Her show is a “toast to the American dream” and tells the story of innovation, ingenuity and creativity. Previously, she served as the primary evening news anchor for CBS Chicago and the morning news anchor for CBS New York. Sullivan, who began her career at the CBS affiliate in South Bend, earned a bachelor’s degree in American studies from Notre Dame.

Cathy Saunders, global head of client engagement for Putnam Investments, will discuss the topic of leadership and investment takeaways from the summit’s discussions during the afternoon session. Saunders has been in the investment industry for more than 30 years and received the Top Women in Asset Management Award by Money Management Executive in 2017.

Panel discussions will cover investing topics such as current investment opportunities, asset allocation in a portfolio and global investment trends, among others. For more information, view the agenda on the summit’s website.

Martijn Cremers, interim dean and the Bernard J. Hank Professor of Finance at Mendoza College of Business, will offer opening remarks.

The Women’s Investing Summit is offered through the partnership of NDIGI and student clubs Smart Woman Securities, the Notre Dame Investment Club and the Wall Street Club. Sponsors include European private equity firm Permira and Rob Bertino (ND ’85) of Bertino Investment Consulting Group in association with UBS Private Wealth Management.

Established in 2015, the Notre Dame Institute for Global Investing at the Mendoza College of Business seeks to be the preeminent university-based investment management research and education program in the world. The Institute’s mission includes adding depth and breadth to Mendoza’s finance curriculum; expanding internship and career placement opportunities for undergraduate and MBA students; providing experiential learning opportunities both in the U.S. and abroad; leveraging key partnerships among the college, the Notre Dame Investment Office, and the University’s extensive alumni network; and furthering faculty research and thought leadership in areas related to global investment management.

For more information about NDIGI or the Women’s Investing Summit, contact Theresa Swain, NDIGI communications and event specialist, at 574-631-8395 or

Topics: Press Releases