Celebrating Schwab’s continuing commitment to women


October 9, 2020

By Melissa Brandon, Director, Communications

Each year, on Oct. 11, the world celebrates the International Day of the Girl. According to the United Nations, the day aims to “highlight and address the needs and challenges girls face, while promoting girls’ empowerment and the fulfillment of their human rights.”

As part of this year’s celebration of the International Day of the Girl, Charles Schwab celebrates the Women’s Interactive Network at Schwab (WINS) Employee Resource Group (ERG), which has made it a mission to support women in the workplace since 1990. We recently sat down with Schwab leaders and WINS co-chairs Annie L. and Karen B. to talk about the important role WINS plays at Schwab.

Annie and Karen

  • Annie L.

    Schwab Vice President and WINS co-Chair

  • Karen B.

    Schwab Managing Director and WINS co-Chair

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Question: Thanks for joining us, ladies. We’re excited to celebrate International Day of the Girl and WINS. Tell us the history of WINS.

ANNIE: WINS launched in 1990 as a way to connect women to other women in the firm. Our mission has evolved over the past 30 years – building on that initial vision of networking and adding talent development, personal and professional growth and more.

Question: What would you say are some of WINS proudest accomplishments over the past 30 years?

KAREN: I think WINS is most proud of our contributions to our communities and to each other. We support organizations like Dress for Success. We make a point to provide professional development resources to our employees on a regular basis. And we celebrate women with events like Go Red Day, which raises awareness and funding for women’s heart health.

Question: What is WINS most focused on now?

ANNIE: At our core, we strive to elevate women. We work to provide Schwabbies with the support, materials and network to help them navigate their careers and our ever-changing industry. We want to serve as allies to our colleagues across the firm. And we’re growing! We’re Schwab’s largest ERG with more than 3,000 members, which I think really speaks to the firm’s commitment to empower women. Our renewed focus is on the importance of allyship and bringing our male colleagues into the conversation. We’re also committed to enhancing our focus on women of color by partnering with other ERGs to deliver on programs that highlight and amplify the voices of women of color, such as the 2017 Hidden Figures collaboration event featuring Dr. Christine Darden, and executing on similar collaborative concepts with other ERGs in 2021.

Question: Why does equality matter?

KAREN: At Schwab, we believe diversity creates richer conversations which lead to better outcomes for both our clients and employees.  Our support of women and equity at Schwab is no different.  We believe that everyone deserves to be treated fairly and with respect and a culture of diversity, inclusion and equity is a key to making sure everyone has the opportunity to reach their full potential.

Schwabbies celebrate women in finance in early 2020.