Carson Group, BlackRock Help Launch Diversity-Focused Effort

Anew nonprofit group is working to make the financial services industry more inclusive through the support of mentoring, leadership and internship programs for college students, with the backing of Carson Group and BlackRock.

FinServ Foundation, which opened its doors Wednesday, is led by Jamie Hopkins, managing director of Carson Coaching and director of Retirement Research at Carson Group.

“About 18 months in the making. So excited to announce the launch of FinServ Foundation. 15 schools and 40 students already in the first cohort!” Hopkins said on Twitter.

According to Michael Lane, head of iShares U.S. Wealth Advisory at BlackRock: “Finding the right talent means creating opportunities for all those who want a career in financial services. We have to acknowledge that not everyone has the same level of access to our industry, and as leaders, we need to do our part in creating access.”

Since “the right talent with the right tools will help us deliver better financial advice and financial well-being … I’m excited about our investment in FinServ Foundation,” Lane explained in a statement.

Preston Cherry, CFP, a founding board member of FinServ Foundation and president of Concurrent Financial Planning, added that “attracting young people to this profession and elevating their early career experience helps progress and retain the much-needed young talent to meet the growing demand for financial services across younger generations.”

The effort announced this week “is well-suited to producing impactful change,” said Cherry, who also is treasurer of the Association of African American Financial Advisors (AAAA) Foundation, a FinServ Foundation partner.

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