Selecting or Evaluating an Investment Advisor
Evaluating an Investment Advisor, and selecting a new one, are two of the most important decisions an individual or organization will make when it comes to stewarding assets. It is critical to choose an advisor who has an unbiased approach to building a portfolio and a shared commitment to achieving social and environmental impact with financial return.
Very few of us are trained in best practices of governance policies that include investment beliefs, decision-based attribution evaluation, manager diversity, supply chain, and impact. If you are one of the many who have not been trained in best practices of governance, impact, and decision-based evaluation, you could benefit from working with experts such as an outsourced Chief Impact Officer, who would be free from conflict with you, since they would not seek to manage your assets. If you think you might need help, please contact us at [email protected]. If we cannot support you, we will work with you to find the support you need.
In the News
- International Women’s Forum of Colorado Evaluates Donor Advised Fund Investment Advisor and Moves Fund to Support Women 100%.
- International Women’s Forum of Colorado partners with Colorado Lending Source to Launch CO Women’s Main Street Loan Program
- AJL Foundation: Impact Investing Journey: How We Evaluated Our Financial Advisors (part 2)
- AJL Foundation: Impact Investing Journey: How We Got Started (part 1)
International Women’s Forum of Colorado
In 2019, International Women’s Forum of Colorado and Impact Finance Center collaborated on an impact investing journey that would ensure 100% of the International Women’s Forum of Colorado’s Donor Advised Fund would support women. Impact Finance Center supported International Women’s Forum of Colorado evaluating the investment advisor of the existing community foundation and subsequent move of the Donor Advised Fund to the Women’s Foundation where 100% of the resources support women. Additionally, International Women’s Forum of Colorado partners with Colorado Lending Source to Launch CO Women’s Main Street Loan Program. This work was led by International Women’s Forum of Colorado Trustees Emeritus Rufina Hernández (Past President), Bernee Strom, and Stephanie Gripne.
Additionally, six members of International Women’s Forum of Colorado including Lauren Castille, Carolyn Fineran, Nicole Bagley & Trustees Emeritus Rufina Hernández (Past President), Bernee Strom, and Stephanie Gripne created and participated in the first of it’s kind Women’s Impact Investing Giving Circle in partnership with Impact Finance Center the Women’s Foundation of Colorado. Impact Finance Center developed the idea of Impact Investing Giving Circles as way to provide opportunities for donors to learn how to become impact investors using a giving circle model that is affordable, fun, safe, and impactful. A special thank you to Carolyn Fineran who wrote the first check for both the Women’s Impact Investing Giving Circle and CO Women’s Main Street Loan Program.
Women are expected to be one the biggest beneficiaries of the approximated $30 trillion wealth transfer by 2030 from their spouses and parents. For those women, who do not have training or experience in managing their own investments, they need trustworthy guides, classes, and resources learn about investing from instructors that are free of a conflict of interest where investment advisors and institutions are trying to secure assets under management. Furthermore, women need to understand the overall governance of the portfolio from public investments, to direct investing, to philanthropy. Impact Finance Center is committed to teaching women how to establish best practices in governance, investment beliefs, decision-based attribution evaluation, so that they can cost-effectively work with their investment advisor to manage their investment portfolios in a way that is aligned with their values.
Additionally, women-led businesses are the fastest growing segment of entrepreneurship in the U.S., but they comprise a small percentage of the companies funded by venture capital. According to a Babson College study, most women-led businesses have been funded by the founder herself, or by friends and family. While this is true of start-up’s in general, recent data show that in the U.S., firms that receive VC funding tend to be founded and led by white and Asian men. Indeed, fewer than 5% of all VC-funded firms have women on their executive teams, and only 2.7% had a female CEO. Women-owned businesses receive only 7 percent of venture capital investment money. Loan approval rates for female entrepreneurs is 15 to 20 percent less than it is for men. The number of women-owned firms has grown 68 percent since 2007, much higher than the national average of 47 percent. Overall, women-owned businesses account for about one-third of all types of businesses in the United States. Among employer firms, however, women-owned businesses are only about 16 percent of the total. Among high-growth firms women usually account for less than 10 percent of founders in any given sample.
AJL Charitable Foundation
In 2017 AJL Charitable Foundation and Impact Finance Center collaborated on an impact investing journey that would ensure 100% of the AJL Charitable Foundation’s resources would support Colorado working families. Impact Finance Center supported AJL Foundation evaluating their investment advisor and searching for a new investment advisor.
AJL FOUNDATION for Expressions of Interest and Requests for Proposals
- AJL Charitable Foundation
- Announcement for AJL Charitable Foundation Expression of Interest for an Investment Advisor.
- Due November 10th: AJL Charitable Foundation Expression of Interest (EOI) Survey. A MS Word version of the survey can be downloaded here. We recommend that you download the MS Word version of the survey and complete your questions first in the MS Word document so that you can copy / paste your answers in this survey. We have had a few problems with the survey tool, Qualtrics, where respondents were not able to return to their survey to complete it. We are not taking phone calls for the EOI. Please email [email protected] if you have any questions about the EOI.
- AJL Charitable Foundation Investment Policy Statement that includes the Investment Beliefs and Values Statement
- Due January 4: AJL Charitable Foundation Request for Proposal (Invite Only).
Choosing Your Investment Advisor Case Studies
Selecting your investment advisor is the most important decision you will make in terms of financial returns and impact on communities and the environment.
Impact Finance Center uses best practices of evaluation as defined by the Impact Management Project.
Resources: DECISION-based attribution evaluation
Decision-based attribution evaluation reflects the investment beliefs of, and the way, the asset owner delegates or makes decisions. Each decision is measured for its positive or negative contribution to risk-adjusted returns and whether it is a function of skill or luck. This enhanced performance reporting holds decision-makers accountable and leads to improved governance.