Kristen Kimmell

Kristen Kimmell

Executive vice president for business development


Women comprise a third of the advisers affiliated with Advisor Group — a result engineered in part by its Women Forward Initiative. The initiative is a collection of programs designed to help women network and collaborate and serves the 4,651 women among the firm’s 13,937 advisers.

The firm — a network of independent wealth management firms and 10,000 financial professionals — has made a concerted effort over the last several years to increase the total number of women in its ranks and in management and leadership positions.

“We really see the industry in a state of transition, and we wanted to be proactive with an innovative approach,” said Erinn Ford, executive vice president of adviser engagement.

The increasing number of women helps Advisor Group appeal to women who are controlling more wealth and want a wider range of services than stock recommendations.

“They’re great at building these holistic relationships that go beyond portfolio management,” said Kristen Kimmell, executive vice president for business development.

Women have been moving up the ranks at Advisor Group, which said that 44% of all “people leaders” across the organization are women, compared to 38% in 2019. Retention is enhanced in part by through benefits such as leave and adoption support that is available upon hire.

The goal is to position the firm as the “destination where women can flourish personally and professionally,” Ford said. — Mark Schoeff Jr.