Hightower, one of the nation’s largest registered investment advisors (RIA), announced today that Jeffrey Grinspoon, a partner and founder at VWG Wealth Management, a Hightower advisory business in Vienna, Va., has been honored with the Savvy Ladies’ Male Ally award, which recognizes men in the financial field who go above the call of duty to support their female colleagues, bringing about positive change, valuing equality and actively working to achieve it. VWG Wealth Management CEO Elana Fine nominated Grinspoon for the award, which he received at a gala on November 16. Hightower is a proud sponsor of Savvy Ladies and the work they do to promote financial literacy for women; Hightower is both a financial sponsor and a collaborator on relevant content.
In her nomination, Fine explained how Grinspoon has created a culture designed to attract, retain and promote women to the highest levels of the firm. Of VWG Wealth Management’s 19 employees, 15 are women, including its CEO and COO.
“Jeff didn’t ask me just to join his firm, he empowered me to be a leader of the business he has been building for decades,” Fine said. “For women to move forward and secure more leadership opportunities, having male allies is important. Jeff gave me the room to lead and placed his trust in me so that our employees would trust me. The more men that follow Jeff’s example, the better off our industry will be in attracting female talent.”
Four years ago, Grinspoon persuaded Fine to leave the investment banking world and join his firm, with the eventual goal of running the business. He promoted Fine to CEO last year.
“When I started this business, my first priority was to surround myself with good people. As I searched for the best people for the job, it was a coincidence they happened to be women,” Grinspoon said. “What I started to realize in working with our skilled talent was that they demonstrated one of the most important characteristics an advisor should have – empathy. Soon, it became a conscious decision that we should be looking for quality women in all roles, not just advisors.”
Grinspoon has encouraged Fine to pursue her other professional goals. A member of several nonprofit boards, Fine also wanted to play a greater role within the Hightower business. Last year, Fine was asked to join the CEO Executive Leadership Council, a group designed to provide input into the strategy and thinking of the company.
“I am proud of Jeff and the example that he sets for our industry,” said Hightower Chairman & CEO Bob Oros. “We all need to examine what we are doing to create diverse and inclusive workforces. At Hightower, we have invested heavily in diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives, as well as leadership programs to train and equip next-generation leaders. VWG exemplifies a firm dedicated to creating opportunities for all its employees, empowering women and investing in its future leaders through creating a clear succession plan.”
Two years ago, Hightower unveiled its Hightower Center for Leadership, an education and training program designed to empower the next generation of leaders in Hightower advisory businesses, including soon-to-be partners, lead advisors, relationship managers, operational professionals, business managers and strategic decision-makers. The first class of 54 participants—1/3 of them women— graduated from the two-year program this past spring.
Additionally, Hightower’s HIGHFlex work program, a permanent hybrid work environment that offers unlimited paid time-off, expanded maternity and paternity benefits, as well as the ability to work from any location for up to four weeks per year, has helped to attract many women seeking better work-life balance.
Hightower is a wealth management firm that provides investment, financial and retirement planning services to individuals, foundations, and family offices, as well as 401(k) consulting and cash management services to corporations. Hightower’s capital solutions, operational support services, size and scale empower its vibrant community of independent-minded wealth advisors to grow their businesses and help their clients achieve their vision of “well-th. rebalanced.” Based in Chicago with advisors across the U.S., the firm operates as a registered investment advisor (RIA). Learn more about Hightower’s collaborative business model at www.hightoweradvisors.com.
Securities offered through Hightower Securities, LLC member FINRA/SIPC. Hightower Advisors, LLC is a SEC registered investment advisor.