6 Trends Shaping the Future of Impact and ESG Investing

By Roraj Pradhananga

The Impact and ESG investing space is growing and changing rapidly. These are a few of the emerging trends that we are paying close attention to at Veris Wealth Partners. 

1. The Mainstreaming of Impact and ESG Investing

Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) and impact funds/investments have performed very well, and interest in impact investing is growing at a tremendous rate. Globally speaking, ESG assets are expected to grow to $41 trillion by 2022 and $50 trillion by 2025. The United States has now surpassed Europe in ESG growth. ESG assets in the US are on track to grow to $20 trillion in 2022.1 According to the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) survey, impact investing assets under management (AUM) increased from $502 billion2 in 2019 to $715 billion in 2020.3 The IFC estimates the impact investing market to be even larger at $2.3 trillion including $1.3 trillion that are managed by publicly owned Development Financial Institutions (DFIs) and national/regional development banks. Of the $2.3 trillion in AUM, $636 billion represented core AUM managed by privately owned asset managers and DFIs where intent, contribution and impact measurement are identified. This is an increase from $505 billion in 2019.4

It is really exciting to see our sector headed towards the mainstream, but we aren’t there yet. My inner skeptic sees interests in ESG and impact investing that are driven solely by increasing consumer demand and not by intentionality, which is important for cohesiveness and long-termism – qualities that define our industry. A recent survey by HSBC found that of 528 institutions with $12.6 trillion in AUM indicated that 33% of respondents said attracting capital or inflows is the strongest reason for integrating ESG followed by 26% stating competition or peer pressure, not because of their convictions or commitment to environmental and social sustainability.5 I believe not all of these assets represent authentic ESG or impact focused investments or full ESG integration. Not all of these are hundred percent ESG integrated and some are exclusionary only.

Veris is an impact focused wealth management firm, and we take extra steps to determine authenticity. We believe the fund managers we invest our client assets with do care. For them it is not just about growth in assets under management. We believe there is a difference between what our clients are invested in and the overall market. 

2. Greenwashing and Impact Washing

We believe more firms are claiming to do impact investing without the intentionality and/or additionality. People have valid concerns about greenwashing and impact washing, but I believe we also need to worry about losing the concept of authenticity, accountability and why we truly believe in impact investing. Nowadays, it feels as if everyone is claiming to have an impact – how do we differentiate and truly validate those claims?

I believe our industry must push for verification of impact, measurement and management – which is a huge challenge due to lack of data. Despite the challenges, many of us are clamoring for more standardization and definitions. I believe mandatory disclosures, reporting and regulatory changes like the EU’s Sustainable Finance Disclosures Regulation (SFDR)and similar regulatory changes that are being considered by the SEC would help.

On the public equities and fixed income side of the investing – I’m paying close attention to challenges around data. We are asking, how can we best utilize the ESG data that we have and how can they be forward looking instead of backward looking? How do we truly integrate ESG factors in the investment process and measure and manage impact?

On the private investment funds, how do we truly define and assess whether the investments have concretely contributed to additional social and environment impacts? However, all these questions shouldn’t take away the focus and spotlight from the great work many impact investors are doing and the need to do more.

3. Innovation and Intersectionality

While the push for standardization is much needed, I also believe the field must continue innovating on better ESG, sustainable and impact investing solutions. I believe we need targeted solutions that focus on overlooked impact themes and especially those where capital flow is very minimal today.

I also believe we need more focus on intersectionality, especially with complex challenges that are often intertwined – climate change, health and wellness, mental health, wealth building, employee ownership, etc. I see lots of discussion around environmental/climate justice but our industry doesn’t have targeted investable solutions yet.

4. Active Ownership and Policy

Even with increasing numbers of people – especially younger generations – supporting action on climate, racial inequities, impact and ESG investing, there appears to be a huge partisan divide in this country, with one party seemingly holding back policy changes.

I believe we need sound government policies and a friendly policy environment to scale impact and ensure the progress we make will not be lost if future administrations change the rules.

I believe we need to amplify the voices of the communities that are directly impacted and engage with portfolio companies on various ESG topics and challenges and help guide them to be agents of impact and change.

5. Commitments and Authenticity

Many organizations have made public commitments around net zero7 and equity, diversity and inclusion in the last couple of years.8 What is missing is the details as to how these organizations plan to get there.9 This is further supported by our conversations with our approved managers as they analyze policies and data of the companies they invest in.

I believe we need a heavy lift on these issues now – we don’t have until 2050 or later to get to net zero based on our current trajectory. We also need to ensure that EDI is not an exercise in box checking. 

6. The Changing Role of Impact Investors

I believe our industry is facing some existential questions, including:

  • What does it really mean to be an impact investor?
  • Are we perpetuating extractive practices through what we currently call impact investments and various financial instruments we use?
  • What is the role of impact investors in providing catalytic and patient capital? Do we wait for government and quasi government entities to de-risk projects before we move in or do we become the de-riskers?

As we think about these important questions and have conversations about the answers, I believe our industry must continue doing the important work we are doing. We need to create innovative financial instruments to provide capital to emerging solutions to ensure individuals, communities and solutions who need access to capital the most have access to it.

Roraj Pradhananga is a Partner and the Senior Research Analyst at Veris Wealth Partners. He leads our Investment Research team, is a voting member of the Investment Committee and Chair of the Equity, Diversity & Inclusion (EDI) Committee.



The information contained herein is provided for informational purposes only, represents only a summary of the topics discussed, and should not be construed as the provision of personalized investment advice, or an offer to sell or the solicitation of any offer to buy any securities. Rather, the contents including, without limitation, any forecasts and projections, simply reflect the opinions and views of the author. All expressions of opinion reflect the judgment of the author as of the date of publication and are subject to change without notice.  There is no guarantee that the views and opinions expressed herein will come to pass. Additionally, this document contains information derived from third party sources. Although we believe these third-party sources to be reliable, we make no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information derived from such third-party sources and take no responsibility therefore.

“Don’t Say Gay” Laws: Action Steps You Can Take

Governor Ron DeSantis signed Florida’s “Parental Rights in Education bill,” dubbed the “Don’t Say Gay” bill by opponents, at the end of March 2022. Veris Wealth Partners has always supported and will always support LGBTQ+ rights and equality. We are disturbed by Florida’s adoption of this law and the news that lawmakers from at least 19 other states are now considering similar legislation. We are devastated to think of the impact this is already having on LGBTQ+ families and especially children.

Language in the Florida law prohibits “classroom instruction” and “discussion” about “sexual orientation or gender identity” for students in kindergarten through third grade “or in a manner that is not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate” in Florida’s schools. Because the bill does not specify when such instruction would be considered “age-appropriate” we believe it is very likely that it will directly impact children in higher grades as well.

The law also prohibits personnel in Florida’s schools from withholding information from parents regarding a student’s “mental, emotional, or physical health or well-being.” We believe this is widely thought to mean that school counsellors will have to inform parents if a student told them they were gay or trans – even if such disclosure could be harmful to the student. If a Florida parent feels that a school is in violation of any part of this law, the bill gives them the right to request an investigation by a magistrate or sue the school district at the school district’s expense. We believe the consequences of this legislation for LGBTQ+ children threatens their self-esteem and in some cases will be life-threatening.

GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis said in response to this legislation, “banning discussion of LGBTQ people in school is an effort to silence and shame, to divide and disrespect, when all students should feel safe to learn about themselves and each other.”

Many experts agree that laws that target LGBTQ+ youth and families increase the dangers for kids that are already at higher risk of bullying and suicide than their heterosexual and cisgender peers. Research conducted by The Trevor Project found that LGBTQ kids who learned about LGBTQ issues or people in school were 23% less likely to report a suicide attempt.

How Businesses Are Responding to this Legislation

The Walt Disney Company announced a pause to political donations in Florida and vowed to help get the law repealed, but they are not the only corporation taking a stand.

Many business leaders are publicly speaking out against these kinds of laws. Over 240 corporations, including many that joined in response to the Florida law, have signed the Business Statement on Anti-LGBTQ State Legislation produced by Freedom for All Americans and Human Rights Campaign.  

This statement declares, “As business leaders dedicated to equal treatment, respect, and opportunity for all – as well as to improving the financial and investment climate across the country – we call for public leaders to abandon or oppose efforts to enact this type of discriminatory legislation and ensure fairness for all Americans.”

7 Action Steps You Can Take to Help LGBTQ+ Youth Now

As a Veris client, colleague, partner or collaborator, we also wished to share with you concrete actions that you can take in support of LGBTQ+ Youth. Many of us felt helpless watching this proposed legislation become law in Florida – but we can take action and we hope you will consider one or many of the following action steps!

1.Write your legislators.

If you live in Florida or any of the other states currently considering anti LGBTQ legislation call or write your elected officials to share your opinion. For help crafting your message, the ACLU offers a guide with suggestions for Writing Your Elected Officials.

2. Donate to the ACLU.

The American Civil Liberties Union works to protect the rights of LGBTQ people across the nation. To support their efforts you can make a donation to the ACLU. To make an impact at the local level, you can make a donation directly to the ACLU of Florida.

3. Support the Human Rights Campaign.

HRC has vowed to fight to repeal the Parental Rights in Education law in Florida. At the national level, HRC is working to pass The Equality Act, new legislation that would “provide consistent and explicit non-discrimination protections for LGBTQ+ people across key areas of life, including employment, housing, credit, education, public spaces and services, federally funded programs, and jury service.” 

4. Track anti LGBTQ legislation aimed at students.

A record number of curriculum censorship and hostile school climate bills have been introduced in 2022. You can track these laws and visit the Movement Advancement Project’s Policy Spotlight: Curriculum Censorship & Hostile School Climate Bills

5. Drive change through conversations about LGBTQ issues.

An Ally’s Guide to Terminology: Talking About LGBTQ People & Equality, produced by MAP & GLAAD, is a free resource to help allies better understand issues that impact LGBTQ issues and language so that you can talk about these matters in a way that will drive positive change.

6. Support The Trevor Project and Trans Lifeline.

The Trevor Project and Trans Lifeline are suicide prevention and crisis intervention organizations for LGBTQ youth and an advocate for LGBTQ youth mental health. These 501(c)(3) organization provides free counseling services and resources to help prevent suicide among LGBTQ youth. The Trevor Project also works at the federal, state, and local level to address factors that increase the risk of suicide among LGBTQ youth. Donate here to The Trevor Project or here to Trans Lifeline.

7. Share Transgender, Non-Binary & Gender Fluid Reading Lists

The Veris team in San Francisco has children attending the Berkeley Unified School District. BUSD developed multiple reading lists, organized by grade level, represent books published in the last 5 years that are devoted to celebrating, representing, and affirming transgender, non-binary, and gender fluid identities and expression. Please feel free to share these lists with friends and family to continue to educate and build awareness, and to break down assumptions and combat intolerance. Transgender Reading Lists.

Veris recognizes these efforts as an element of broader movements that include criminalization of reproductive choices as well as restrictions on truthful education about race in American history (dubbed “Critical Race Theory”). As we approach the next election cycle we anticipate LGBTQ+ people, Reproductive Justice, and issues of Racial Justice will become divisive campaign issues. We recognize the humanity of and harm to people who find their lives and the safety of their existence to be listed as campaign slogans. We stand in support of these communities and we hope you will join us in taking one or many of these suggested steps.

To a better world, together,

The Veris Team


The information contained herein is provided for informational purposes only. The contents including, without limitation, any forecasts and projections, simply reflect the opinions and views of the authors. All expressions of opinion reflect the judgment of the authors as of the date of publication and are subject to change without notice. There is no guarantee that the views and opinions expressed herein will come to pass. Additionally, this document contains information derived from third party sources.  Although we believe these third-party sources to be reliable, we make no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information derived from such third-party sources and take no responsibility therefore.   

Veris Partner Spotlight: Roraj Pradhananga

Roraj Pradhananga, Senior Research Analyst at Veris Wealth Partners, was named a Veris Partner in December of 2021. Roraj leads our Investment Research team, is a voting member of the Investment Committee and Chair of the Equity, Diversity & Inclusion (EDI) Committee. We asked Roraj to answer a few questions about his life, career, and vision for the future of impact investing. 

Why impact? What led you to focus on impact investing?

Roraj Pradhananga: When I was in the fourth grade, I met the groundbreaking Black documentary filmmaker and author William Miles while he was on a visit to Nepal, where I was born and lived for many years. Miles gave me a copy of his book Black Stars in Orbit which is about the first Black American astronauts. He signed it, “Roraj, reach for the stars.” Those words have continued to reverberate throughout my life. As impact investors we must seek bold innovations – always reaching for the stars. But to be effective we must do so while keeping our feet firmly rooted in the realities of life here on earth.

I experienced firsthand the impact of the climate crisis on communities in Nepal, which is one of the most vulnerable countries to the negative impacts of climate change. I’ve also witnessed the positive impact that increased access to education and inflow of capital and investments to healthcare and other sectors can have in communities in Nepal.

Early in my career I spent many years in more traditional financial services roles in NY. I learned a lot, but the work left me feeling hollow. I wanted to give back to the community that had given me so much. After business school in Switzerland, I took the leap and joined an asset management firm, RobecoSAM, one of the pioneers in sustainable investing. I haven’t looked back. I was lucky to have been introduced to Veris, a 100% impact wealth management firm whose vision and mission is to create an equitable, just and sustainable world through financial markets, when I moved back to the U.S. in 2019.

How has your life experience shaped how you approach your work as an impact investor?

My experiences as an immigrant in the U.S. fueled my perseverance and my desire to change the world for the better. I started off with nothing, worked three jobs in high school and supported myself through college. I appreciate the opportunities that this country has provided me, but I am also keenly aware of the challenges of those facing obstacles to survive and thrive here – especially inequality and lack of opportunities and access in many low and moderate income (LMI) communities and communities of color. These life learnings drive my passion for impact investing.

I’ve also worked in various roles in many verticals of financial services – banking, insurance, asset management and wealth management at large-, mid-, small-sized companies and startups. My experiences as a former advisor/consultant to large corporate clients, an auditor, a banker as well as an sustainable investment analyst, have provided me insight into how sustainable companies should be run and also how they shouldn’t be run, which is critical in performing due diligence of investment opportunities for our clients.

Besides having very diverse work experiences, I’ve had the opportunity to live in four different countries and cultures and traveled to many more, which helps me bring a different perspective on how to analyze risks and opportunities. 

I have many interests – I’m curious and I like learning. All these experiences help me do what I do, understand the opportunities and challenges of the impact investing industry, help our clients invest in the right opportunities and also help the firm grow.

What is inspiring you most in your work right now?

Veris is a firm where all employees have a voice and everyone makes a genuine effort to walk the talk. I’m inspired by the collaboration and co-creation with my colleagues at Veris, our values-aligned clients and innovative investment partners who are constantly thinking about how to scale their impact and meaningfully contribute to the advancement of the impact investing industry. It is also important to highlight the decision of the Partner Group to remain majority employee-owned and independent, when many of our peers in the industry are being acquired by larger companies. This allows us to focus on our mission and vision, what’s important for clients and implement our theory of change, which is very inspiring.

I’m inspired by our firm’s leadership on equity, diversity, inclusion and devotion to creating the sense of belonging. Differences are embraced here – it isn’t just a pledge or commitment on paper. Many in our industry are talking about it but not doing much. Veris’ unwavering support of underrepresented emerging managers and underserved and underrepresented founders through them and underserved populations through Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) is very important. We are also constantly looking to partner with others in helping create investable and impactful financial products and ensuring they get off the ground.

Impact wealth management has a big role to ensure that we allocate capital to the investments that are best stewards of capital and in areas where capital is needed most. So I’m grateful that being part of Veris has given me the opportunity to walk this path with some of the pioneers of socially responsible investing and impact investing – pioneers like Patricia Farrar-Rivas, Michael Lent, Steve Fahrer, Anders Ferguson and David Hills, who founded Veris right before the financial crisis and never wavered.

What is your vision for the future of the impact investing industry?

In order to achieve an equitable net-zero future and a just transition in which global warming is limited to 1.5℃ and all humans treat each other with compassion and care and have equal access to opportunities, we need systems level change where we incorporate all stakeholders and community voices are taken into account.

The impact investing industry has been more collaborative than other sectors of the investment and financial service industry. However, there is still more that we can do to ensure we do not perpetuate inequities and exacerbate disparities. I would like to see more co-creation of solutions – where the impact investing industry truly comes together as a unit to tackle challenges head on and also brings along the traditional financial services on this journey. We will all need to work together to develop and catalyze intentional, innovative solutions that will concretely contribute to additional positive social and environmental impact outcomes. I also hope to see more collaborative efforts to tackle greenwashing and impact washing and ensure that the interrelationship of financial and impact outcomes we achieve can be appropriately measured and verified, which will provide further credibility and validity to impact investors.

I see opportunities for collaborative partnerships on various topics like climate crisis – reliance away from fossil fuel (the Ukraine invasion has shown why this is even more important today, not only the need to tackle climate change but also from a humanitarian and geopolitical stability perspective), the need for sustainable and regenerative farming practices, racial & gender inequity, and the lack of opportunities and wealth building in LMI communities and communities of color.

Everything we do is interconnected – the food we eat, the products we use and the waste we generate, the electricity we consume, the impact of our experience in the U.S. on the rest of the world. We have to remember that we only have one earth. I’m excited about being involved in developing innovations designed for intersectionality and the ways we might use new technologies to tackle challenges like environmental/climate justice that are complex and intertwined.

There are lots of conversations happening about conscious capitalism, stakeholder capitalism, regenerative finance and practices and double and triple bottom line. How do we ensure that these succeed? Let’s take a step back and focus on why we are in the impact investing space in the first place. It is to have a positive social and environmental impact. We sometimes get too hung up on the miniscule details while forgetting the crises at hand. We need to use our voices and capital to fight against injustice, eliminate bias and discrimination and work towards an equitable, just and sustainable world together.

Veris Wealth Partners Stands With Ukraine

Veris Wealth Partners stands in solidarity with the people of Ukraine. We condemn Russia’s unprovoked attack on Ukraine’s sovereign soil and our hearts grieve for the people who are now suffering incredible losses in this unjust war.

Cities and towns, including civilian neighborhoods, schools and hospitals, have been reduced to rubble across Ukraine and the humanitarian crisis continues to grow. As of this moment, the UN estimates that over two million Ukrainian refugees have fled their homeland. We have been inspired by the incredible bravery and resilience the Ukrainian people have shown in the face of this tragedy. We also applaud the Russian civilians who have risked their freedom by protesting against this war.

Our Firm’s Action Steps & Support for Humanitarian Aid Efforts

This is not only a time that calls for grieving – it is a time that calls for action. As a community of impact investors, we seek innovative ways to use our resources to help solve humanity’s greatest challenges and build a better world. Since this crisis began, Veris has been seeking action steps we can take to help make a positive impact and provide assistance to the people of Ukraine.

Divestment 

Veris began to assess our investments in Russia shortly after the invasion began. At the end of February we learned that our exposure to Russia in client portfolios – through approved mutual funds and separately managed accounts – was limited to four stocks for a total value of approximately $57,000, which represented around 0.003% of our overall AUM. We immediately engaged with our fund managers to divest from these stocks.

Since our move to divest from Russia, one manager has been able to sell one of the positions but market closures, a lack of trading partners and settlement concerns have prevented the sale and valuation of other positions. We are currently awaiting updates from our fund managers on the remaining positions.

We also asked one of the fund managers to reassess their ESG process to ensure better identification of risk factors and limit future exposure. Furthermore, we asked all our approved managers to analyze and assess portfolio companies that will be negatively impacted based on revenues generated from Russia or significantly rely on suppliers based in Russia and we are currently aware of very limited exposure.

We are going a step further and also engaging with our approved fund managers to divest from Russian stocks and bonds if they have exposure in funds that are not approved at Veris. A few of our approved fund managers have already suspended purchases of Russian securities and are actively working to further reduce their exposure to Russia in funds that are not approved at Veris and where we have no investments. Various index providers like MSCI, FTSE Russell, S&P Dow Jones Indices, Bloomberg, etc. have announced that they will remove Russian securities from their indexes and have determined that Russian securities are no longer investable.

Humanitarian Aid

Veris made a significant donation to UNICEF to support a humanitarian project focused on helping the civilian population that is under attack in eastern Ukraine. UNICEF’s emergency response teams and partners are ramping up efforts to deliver safe water to families in communities where water systems are barely functioning.

UNICEF is also providing health care, nutrition and education support where services are severely lacking or have shut down entirely. Children are particularly vulnerable in this crisis and UNICEF teams are working to protect Ukrainian children from violence, exploitation and abuse.

You can learn more about the project and donate to UNICEF’s efforts to protect children and families in Ukraine here.

How You Can Help

If you are looking for ways to support other aid efforts, there are a variety of organizations working to help Ukraine’s civilian population and refugees. Here are a few that are providing essential emergency services on the ground in the region.

  • The Ukrainian Red Cross Society is helping evacuate civilians, support firefighters and emergency personnel working to repair damage to civilian infrastructure.
  • Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières is responding to the humanitarian crisis by reinforcing capacity for surgical care, emergency medicine, and mental health support for displaced people.
  • Razom is a Ukrainian non-profit focused on emergency medical care. Their current emergency response is focused on procuring critical medical supplies and delivering them where they are needed most in Ukraine.
  • The International Rescue Committee is working in Ukraine and Poland to support displaced families with medical supplies, essential items, and services.

All of us at Veris will continue to keep the Ukrainian people in our thoughts. We will continue to seek out meaningful actions we can take to be of service and we will keep you updated on our efforts.


The information contained herein is provided for informational purposes only. While we have made suggestions as to various organizations that are providing support to the Ukranian people, we have not conducted a comprehensive review of such organizations and make no guarantees as to the claims that they make about their programs.

Veris Wealth Partners’ Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Task Force Case Study Published as Part of the JEDI Investing Toolkit

by Roraj Pradhananga, Partner – Senior Research Analyst

GenderSmart, a global field building initiative dedicated to unlocking the deployment of strategic, impactful gender-smart capital at scale, recently launched a Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (JEDI) toolkit. This JEDI toolkit is designed to encourage allocators, investors and intermediaries to understand the dimensions of JEDI investing and start applying gender and JEDI lenses throughout their investment processes.

The GenderSmart JEDI working group created the toolkit with the hope of improving investment decision-making, bringing on board new portfolio or fund managers, improving existing portfolios and enacting organization change for both people and processes. These goals are in line with Veris Wealth Partners’ vision, our firm’s emphasis on our Racial and Gender Equity theme, as well as the recommendations our own EDI taskforce – consisting of Patricia Farrar-Rivas, Jane Swan and myself –  have made over the last two years.

As part of the JEDI Toolkit, GenderSmart published a case study profiling the work of Veris Wealth Partners’ EDI Task Force. As Partner and Chair of our EDI Task Force, they asked me to describe our approach and I responded, “For Veris, EDI is not an exercise in box-checking. The financial services industry’s approach too often strives to increase diversity in management without sufficient consideration of embedded structural EDI obstacles. Black, Brown and Indigenous voices remain severely underrepresented across the financial services industry. To truly scale up impact and drive racial justice across the industry, a majority of firms will need to adopt an EDI approach that is similar or better than ours.”

How is Veris developing this EDI strategy and applying an EDI lens in investments?

Veris’ Investment Committee approved the EDI task force’s recommendations to significantly increase the number of EDI managers and managers with an explicit EDI lens in their investment process over the next five years. This requires us to be intentional in building our priority pipeline and due diligence and approval processes. We have approved funds with an EDI lens – including funds that focus on employee ownership and combine gender, race and community voices.

Veris’ EDI task force is mandated to assess existing investment practices, make recommendations on EDI goals and integrate EDI in our investment decisions. In 2020, we enhanced and amplified EDI elements throughout our due diligence questionnaire. This new data was instrumental in creating our EDI Manager framework and an Advancing Racial and Gender Equity (ARGE) assessment tool that classifies our approved managers in five different categories – from EDI watchlist (needs improvement) to EDI manager (best-in-class). The other categories are EDI aspirational, EDI firm and EDI investment process.

The ARGE tool measures diversity at all levels of the firm and assesses EDI lens of the investment process of the various fund managers. Pay equity, employee benefits, implementation of EDI policies, portfolio company engagement, shareholder proposals and disclosure of EDI proxy voting guidelines and records are among some of the reviewed data points.

Our next steps include engaging our fund managers, communicating best practices and helping them make improvements. We also performed a self-assessment using the ARGE tool and Veris is not yet an EDI manager. We are asking our non-EDI managers to join us on this transformation journey. Collecting data continues to be our biggest challenge. The success of our EDI approach is dependent on our managers’ willingness to engage, share data and implement changes themselves.

Veris Wealth Partners’ EDI Vision and Commitments

Veris is an impact wealth management firm with a vision to build a just, equitable and sustainable world and we believe equity (which is purposefully listed first), diversity and inclusion (EDI) must touch every aspect of our work. Veris strives to transform our firm and the industry in pursuit of this vision, such that along with this vision, mission and values, EDI is an integral part of our investment philosophy. Veris strongly believes EDI should be embedded firm-wide in every aspect: mission, vision, values, culture and policies (including hiring, retention, mentoring, promotion, and vendor/supplier selection). Our signatory commitments include Confluence Philanthropy’s Belonging Pledge, Due Diligence 2.0, Investor Statement of Solidarity & Call to Action to Address Systemic Racism and Women’s Empowerment Principles. Veris approaches commitments with great intention, evaluating internal changes required to ensure they are accountable.

Click here for a recording from the launch of the GenderSmart Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (JEDI) Investing Toolkit

Roraj Pradhananga is a Partner and Senior Research Analyst at Veris Wealth Partners. He leads the Investment Research team and is a voting member of the Investment Committee.


The information contained herein is provided for educational purposes only and is subject to change without notice.  

2022 CEO Letter

by Stephanie Cohn Rupp, CEO

It’s with great pleasure that I share with you reflections on 2021 from my perspective as CEO as well as Veris Wealth Partners’ vision and priorities for 2022.

2021 in Review: A Year of Growth

I am excited to report that 2021 was a year of significant growth for our firm. Veris exceeded $2B in Assets under Management (AUM) by October. Many new clients joined us in 2021, which resulted in 15% organic annual growth rate for the year.

Last year was also a year of growth for our team. We were extremely pleased to welcome Roraj Pradhananga, our Senior Research Analyst who leads investment manager due diligence, thematic research and evaluation of impact metrics, as a Partner in the firm in December of 2021. Veris also recruited fabulous new colleagues in 2021: Sandra Guerrero joined us as a Wealth Manager in San Francisco; Tracey Lynch became part of our client service team in Portsmouth; Susan Daly took the role of Executive Assistant to the CEO; and Mihir Mehan joined the Veris team as a Research Analyst in NYC after completing his Berkeley Haas MBA. With resumes featuring firms such as JP Morgan and BlackRock, these talented individuals bring deep experience in the worlds of finance and investment across the globe – from the U.S. and Mexico to South and East Asia. However, by joining Veris, our new colleagues were looking for closer values alignment. Each has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to our mission in addition to impressive skill sets, track records and professionalism.

DEI

On the research side, Veris developed a novel, thorough and longitudinal approach to due diligence focused on Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion under the leadership of our CIO, Michael Lent. We are applying this framework to all our managers – and to ourselves – to ensure that we increasingly have more diverse managers on our investment platform. We are systematically monitoring the EDI commitment and progress of our current managers and as part of our commitment to equity and inclusion will give precedence to managers who are more diverse. We have 30% minimum requirements of racial and gender diversity at the ownership and staff level of our managers. For those managers who are not yet sufficiently diverse, we request a commitment and a DEI action plan.

We also have implemented changes to our recruiting approach by using best practices in the industry. For example, all resume names and addresses are deleted so that hiring managers cannot unconsciously exert gender, ethnic or other biases in their selection process. We also have undergone thorough DEI training on the nature of privilege and racial inequality – which is an ongoing journey for each of us and for the firm as a whole.

Policy & Shareholder Engagement

In 2021, we offered our clients 560 shareholder engagement options and our clients chose to sign 101 of these letters to corporate boards. The initiatives ranged from diversity data disclosure, consumer packaging, executive pay, and pesticides – to name a few. We are working with our partner As You Sow to implement a Shareholder Engagement Tracker which will help us see real time updates on shareholder initiatives.

Veris was also a signatory to many important initiatives in 2021, including an investor Policy Letter to President Biden to advance sustainable investment expertise at the Department of Labor and the SEC. Our engagement ranges from sending letters to Congress and the White House to advocating for positive change at the state-level on issues such as energy efficiency  and the need for parental leave benefits. Veris also participated in a Dept. of Labor comment period to share how fiduciaries consider ESG Funds for retirement planning in partnership with US SIF.

We will continue to strive to help our clients become more active asset owners to express their values through the corporate shareholder engagement process and we will, as a company, expand our policy advocacy initiatives in 2022. We believe these levers will advance our clients’ mission.

Our Focus in 2022

We started 2022 with an exciting new Partner, Rosemont Investment Group, which joined Veris as a minority passive investor. Rosemont brings an incredible depth of expertise to the firm and will help us think through our next challenges as we further modernize our systems and client service and scale. Our goal is not to grow at all costs – we remain squarely focused on our clients and mission. We hope to set a new precedent by demonstrating that even in an ocean of consolidation and acquisitions companies can remain independent while remaining 100% focused on ESG and impact investing.

This year, Veris will be focused on three main priorities: to advance our leadership role through innovation in impact investing, improve client service and operational efficiencies, and invest in human capital and DEI (Diversity, Equity and Inclusion). We will be hiring many more “Verisians” to meet our high client demand and we will keep you updated on our new client impact report and updated offering.

Lastly, as COVID cases are declining, we hope to be able to safely meet again in person soon – as our team has missed interacting with our clients, colleagues, and our friends in the industry. Together we form a true community of change-makers and we look forward to being able to celebrate our causes and our work together again.

Yours in Impact,

Stephanie Cohn Rupp, CEO

Veris Wealth Partners

Standing Our Ground

by Stephanie Cohn Rupp, CEO

By now you may have heard the news that, as of January 31, 2022, the private investment firm Rosemont Investment Group has partnered with Veris as a minority investor. We are thrilled to share this news, as this move means that we are successfully managing succession at Veris by doubling down on our independence and our commitment to impact investing by seeking out innovative financial partners as well as promoting from within.

Veris Wealth Partners was founded by five socially responsible investors in 2007. Over the years, Veris has grown to become a leader in the industry as a fully-committed Impact Wealth Manager. To facilitate a smooth transition to impact-focused next generation leadership, we began conversations about succession and exploring scenarios several years ago, and we have been working for the past few years on the transition. Three of our founders retired prior to 2021, and Patricia Farrar-Rivas, our previous CEO who led Veris for over 13 years, will be retiring as of March 30th, 2022. The strategic question for Veris all along and particularly during this past year has been how to handle this succession while staying true to our clients and our mission.

We did not want an investor requiring an exit from its investment after a few years and focused on finding an investor with a long-term commitment to Veris and its multigenerational clients. We finally found Rosemont Investment Group – a permanent, RIA expert minority investor who now owns a minority interest in Veris.

Rosemont is an ideal partner for Veris in many ways. They respect Veris Wealth Partners’ legacy as a leader in impact investing. Furthermore, their dedication towards the long-term success of Veris (including supporting the promotion of partners from within) will contribute significantly towards Veris’s long-term commitment to remaining an independent Impact wealth management firm, of which there are now only a few such firms still standing. This was recently evidenced by the promotion of our Senior Research Analyst, Roraj Pradhananga, who became a partner of Veris at the end of 2021.

We see a variety of benefits stemming from our new relationship with Rosemont to Veris. This financing model allows us to remain a stand-alone firm, now one of the few Impact-only Wealth Management firms in the United States. Our firm’s independence is what allows us to invest in our policy work and other non-traditional activities for a wealth manager, such as our research to help sectors such as Regenerative Agriculture, Gender Lens Investing and Racial Justice to grow.

Furthermore, our new partners at Rosemont, Chas Burkhart and Brad Mook, have 18+ years of experience investing in the RIA space. They are helping us further develop and refine our business so we can carry out Veris’s mission. Together, we believe we can create a stronger, larger, and more modern Veris. As experienced wealth management specialists, Rosemont can help Veris grow sustainably while we remain at the forefront of impact investing.

In sum, this new partnership with Rosemont will help Veris remain financially strong, independent, and innovative which will enable us to further our mission.

Yours in Impact,

Stephanie Cohn Rupp, CEO

scohnrupp@veriswp.com

Women, Wealth & Impact: A Conversation with Ellen Remmer and Janine Firpo of Invest for Better

By Alison Pyott, CFP®, CPWA®

Growing the number of impact investors working to address the world’s most pressing problems has long been part of Veris Wealth Partners’ vision and mission. We wanted to highlight the efforts of Invest for Better, an organization founded by Ellen Remmer that is working to inspire women to harness the power of their money to create a better world through education, peer learning circles and community. Recently Ellen joined forces with Janine Firpo, author of Activate Your Money: Invest to Grow Your Wealth and Build a Better World, to expand their collective support for women investors. It has been wonderful to witness and support the success of this effort to empower women impact investors. I recently asked Ellen and Janine a few questions about Invest for Better and their approach to growing an impact movement focused on women.

Alison Pyott: Ellen, why did you start Invest for Better?

Ellen Remmer: I had personally gone through a challenging process as I became inspired to do values aligned investing. Through my day job, I was meeting others who were promoting impact investing and one of those people was Melanie Audette at Mission Investors Exchange. We brought a group together that cared about bringing values aligned investing to a broader audience with a specific focus on women.  This began as a project with amazing partners and shaping it was a collaborative effort. As the circle model took off, we needed to build capacity to make it bigger. Partnering with Janine has been a wonderful evolution.

Alison Pyott: Janine, what inspired you to write Activate Your Money?

Janine Firpo: In 1995 I quit my high-tech start-up job and went on a four and half month sub-Saharan journey. I was inspired to do more meaningful work and help solve some of the problems I saw in Africa. This started a career in international development. I was at a global philanthropy conference – everyone there was high net worth and institutions. That wasn’t me, but I wondered why can’t it be? Over the next 10 years of exploring how to invest all my money with impact, I discovered there were options for everyone. And yet, it was hard to get actionable information about how to align all my assets – even from my advisors. So, I wrote a book. I wanted it to be a resource for women learning alone, as well as in clubs. I’ve had great experiences in clubs. Learning in groups is powerful.

Alison Pyott: Why focus on women?

Janine Firpo: There were few finance books for women, except those focused on the basics. Those books did not include a discussion of our goals and values. Women don’t want to think about money from just our heads. We want to connect it to our goals and aspirations.

Ellen Remmer: The data was clear that women and millennials are interested in shopping and investing with purpose. In my philanthropic experience working with families and donors, women saw philanthropy as the way to create change but did not recognize the power of investments to support a social purpose. Women are curious, but the activation gap between interest and action was significant. The existing on-ramps were limited to angel investing. Nothing helped women look at all asset classes.

Alison Pyott: Do you feel women invest differently than men?

Janine Firpo: I think they do. Women want to take informed risks and understand the stories behind their investments.

Ellen Remmer: The data is confusing and not consistent. The message given to women is not about investing – it is focused on saving. Women often underestimate their knowledge and ability. We see this with investing. We’re socialized to underestimate our abilities. Learning circles help build confidence to ask the right questions.

Alison Pyott: Speaking of circles, what have been your results to date?

Ellen Remmer: We’ve been excited about the number of women we’ve reached. Since 2020, we have hosted 50 total circles with more than 500 women. We are really gratified by the results from our first cohort – 60% of the respondents moved their money to impact investing. They were poised to do it.  And 95% took some action – talking to a partner or changing advisors. Invest for Better has also inspired a variety of spin-offs (including) Jewish Women Invest and groups in Canada, Europe and Mexico.

Alison Pyott: Those are great outcomes. What do you think is the tipping point for women to go from interest in impact investing to action?

Janine Firpo: What I’m seeing is the gap disappears when there is education and community – when it is fun, engaging, and resonates.

Ellen Remmer: This is what is beautiful about our model. Women come curious and poised. They hear stories of other women and realize this is just about asking the right questions and they don’t have to be brilliant at everything. The circle gives you support and accountability to take action.

Alison Pyott: You both shared that you have faced obstacles on your journey to impact investing. What can other women do to overcome their obstacles?

Ellen Remmer: The first thing is to understand your obstacles. Sometimes you have to convince somebody else. Sometimes it is finding time. Or, not being able to find the resources because you don’t know where to start. Each obstacle requires a different solution. At Invest for Better we don’t assume everyone has the same obstacles, but we provide support to help them with their obstacles. Our resources include tips on how to talk to your partner or someone else in your financial world they need to get on board. Or, how to find the right advisor including a new partnership with Values Advisor. The circles provide support and accountability.

Alison Pyott: What do you feel is the role of financial advisors in supporting women impact investors? What do you feel is essential in that relationship? 

Janine Firpo: Listening and educating. Women want to be heard, recognized, and educated. We want to understand. We don’t want to be told. Don’t patronize me or make me feel less than. A great financial advisor should help me feel informed, empowered, and successful. I should know that I am investing in the things that I care about and achieving my financial return objectives.

Ellen Remmer: They are holistic in understanding their clients’ objectives. They listen to understand financial and personal goals so the person feels like they will find meaning and demonstrate impact. A good relationship is a learning journey together and not just about money. It’s experiences, engagement, and collaboration that is organic and natural. Women want advisors to help them understand more and expand their horizons. In the best relationship you continue to challenge each other.

Alison Pyott: What is your vision of success?

Ellen Remmer: Millions of women are engaged with their investments. They are at the table creating a more just and sustainable financial system. This is a way to engage women in shaping the capital markets for the future.

Janine Firpo: My hope is that values-aligned investing becomes a given. It is just how we invest. People will automatically consider the impact of their investments as part of the process, and they will recognize the importance of where their money flows. We’ll put more money into the things we care about; our communities, gender and social equity, and a more sustainable environment and economy. That’s my goal. I would love to see millions of women join this movement. Invest for Better is a catalyst to help more women be aware that their money matters and that they don’t have to go it alone.

Alison Pyott: What most excites in this moment for women impact investors?

Janine Firpo: I’m excited that so many women and young people want to invest their money in a meaningful way. This movement has real momentum.

Ellen Remmer: I’m excited about our new curriculum and alignment with Janine’s book. I’m really excited to see how impact investing is taking off right now – clients demanding solutions, new products accessible to investors, and educating a whole new population to keep us moving in the right direction.

Alison Pyott is a former Invest for Better Steering Committee Member and current Advisor to Northern New England Women’s Investor Network (NNEWIN).  She is a Partner, Chief Client Service Officer, and Senior Wealth Manager at Veris Wealth Partners.

 

The Data Shows Gender Lens Investing is Growing. There is More Work To Do.

By Alison Pyott, CFP®, CPWA®

The flow of assets into Gender Lens Investing (GLI) continues to grow rapidly. According to a new analysis by Veris Wealth Partners, asset growth in public market separately managed accounts (SMAs) doubled over the last two years – from $500M to over $1B in assets among 18 products.

Total public equity and fixed income GLI funds accelerated to over $12B as of June 30th, 2021 based on Veris research and the work of Parallelle Finance. In Veris’ 2018 GLI analysis, we reported $2.4B invested in GLI public market products. In addition, Catalyst at Large and Wharton Social Impact Initiative recently released Project Sage 4.0 – a global scan of private equity, venture capital and private debt funds with a gender lens. Over 200 private GLI offerings have raised $6B. This puts combined GLI assets across public and private funds over $18B.

Racial Equity and Gender Lens

At Veris, we are also focused on equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) internally, across our investment managers, and through placement of capital. For our 2021 scan we asked fund sponsors if they were including a racial equity analysis as part of their strategy. Thirteen of the eighteen respondents said no or did not respond. Of those, one said they were considering inclusion. Others reported they have a separate strategy or an add on screen for racial equity. Some respondents mentioned the challenge in collecting racial equity data for their portfolios. Five managers reported they do include racial equity in their gender lens strategy.

Gender Diversity at Firm and Fund Levels

We also wanted to know if GLI fund sponsors were walking the talk. We collected information on gender diversity at firm and fund levels. Where applicable, most firms responded. Private firms that disclosed ownership had women ownership ranging between 20 – 100% with an average of 37%. Fund sponsors averaged 27% women board representation along with 27% women representation in senior management.

The Pandemic’s Impact on Women in The Workforce

While equity markets are robust and assets continue to flow into GLI products, it is becoming more apparent that philanthropy and investing alone will not create the outcomes we desire for women and their families. In the U.S., where we lack universal basic support for women and families, including family leave and affordable childcare, COVID is forcing many women to drop out of the workforce. According to research published by the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, women’s participation in the labor force has not returned to pre-pandemic levels and when motherhood, race, and ethnicity are incorporated the results are worse. The researchers found “larger increases in pandemic-era labor force exits among women living with children under age 6 and among lower-earning women living with school-age children after controlling for detailed job and demographic characteristics.” (Source)

Public Policy Work

When we started Veris in 2007, we often stated that government and philanthropy alone would not solve the world’s problems and that we needed capital markets and impact investment to create change. However, as Impact Investing has grown we have come to recognize that philanthropy and Impact Investing alone will not create change. Over the last few years Veris has shifted to become more involved in public policy.

In 2021 we partnered with the PL+US (Paid Leave for the United States) initiative to campaign for a national paid family and medical leave policy by 2022. We have also experienced firsthand the patchwork of state level benefits and adjusted our family leave policy to fairly benefit all Veris employees across the country. We feel that a paid family leave program for all employees and more accessible and affordable childcare is essential for families and economies.

The Past and Future of GLI

In 2009 the term “gender lens investing” was created. In 2014 Veris published its first scan of gender lens investments. At that time assets totaled $100M. In just a few years we have seen explosive interest in gender lens investing, product, and asset growth. We can celebrate these achievements, but it is clear there is more work to do.

Acknowledgements

This research would not be possible without Edward Fisher, Tracy Lynch, and Mihir Mehan. We are also grateful to Suzanne Biegel, Catalyst at Large and Co-Producer, GenderSmart Investing Summit for her generous collaboration, and Diana van Maasdijk, Equileap for her support.

Thank you also to the companies who provided their time and information:

  • Aperio Group
  • Bank of America
  • Breckinridge Capital Advisors
  • BNY Mellon
  • Envestnet® PMC™
  • Fulcrum Capital
  • Glenmede
  • Green Alpha
  • Impax Asset Management
  • Invesco
  • Lazard Asset Management
  • Parametric
  • Prometheus Capital
  • Nia Impact Capital
  • Reflection Asset Management
  • Rothschild & Co
  • ThirtyNorth Investments, LLC
  • Anonymous

Alison Pyott is a Partner, Chief Client Service Officer, and Senior Wealth Manager with Veris. She is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and Certified Private Wealth Advisor® (CPWA®) professional.

A Conversation with Nicole Davis: How Can We Efficiently Mobilize Impact Capital for Climate Action and Climate Justice?

By Nicole Davis, Partner and Senior Wealth Manager 

Veris recently partnered with the Shift event series to bring together a variety of impact leaders for a Shift Conversations event focused on climate action and climate justice. 

As moderator of the session I asked each of our panelists – Alex Amouyel, the Executive Director of MIT Solve; Christian Okoye, a Partner in Sidewalk Infrastructure Partners; Geoff Eisenberg, a Partner at Ecosystem Integrity Fund; and Melissa Weigel, Senior Director of Investment at NatureVest – to tell us about the climate solutions they are most excited about currently and examples of how they are bringing a climate justice lens into their own decision-making processes. A video and transcript of the session are available here, but I thought I would share a few of the key insights that I took away from our conversation.  

1. Nature-based solutions can be both more affordable and more effective than human-made solutions. 

Nature-based climate solutions include efforts to conserve and restore existing ecosystems. This approach removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while also increasing resilience to climate change in many cases. By restoring coastal wetlands that act as a carbon sink, we can help with climate mitigation while also helping front-line communities adapt to new challenges caused by our changing climate. Melissa Weigel shared about the innovative sustainable debt swap program that NatureVest developed to support nature-based solutions in communities that are disproportionately impacted by climate change. 

Melissa Weigel: “The Nature Conservancy has designed this debt swap mechanism so we’re able to renegotiate a portion of (small island developing states’) debt in exchange for the country achieving certain conservation outcomes primarily related to coastal resiliency – protecting their coral reefs and mangroves. Not just because it’s good for the environment, but because that actually protects their country from future storm events. Coral reefs can attenuate 97% of the wave energy that might come during a storm, and that’s protecting that coastline from future damage. So it’s actually making the community more resilient, and we’re able to reduce their debt burden.” 

This nature-based approach is reducing carbon while protecting the lives, property, and livelihoods of the people who live in front-line communities and doing so in a way that is significantly lower cost than developing and installing a human-designed solution like a seawall. 

2. Rethinking our existing energy grid will be a critical part of the solution to climate change. 

Developing and scaling renewable energy solutions is critical, but that is only one piece of the solution to climate change. There is tremendous opportunity to address climate change by rethinking our existing energy grid. Christian Okoye, of Sidewalk Infrastructure Partners, talked about the exciting possibilities of Distributed Energy Resources (DERs). 

Christian Okoye: “With more people deciding to put solar on their roofs or get an EV charger, we think there’s going to be increased numbers of prosumers to the grid. The grid will increasingly become bi-directional, where we can all participate in the grid. You won’t necessarily have to figure out how you trade and get value out of the grid. A lot of that will be automated through Tesla and other aggregators who will get all of the load at the consumer or prosumer level and be able to speak with the grid and participate in those marketplaces and give you value for your participation and for your load flexibility. This will effectively become a virtual power plant.”

In the future we won’t just be buying power from our utility, we’ll also be selling it back. That will be a big part of the solution moving us away from large scale utility plants that emit greenhouse gases. In addition to that, DER solutions aimed at expanding access to renewable energy to low and moderate income communities that have historically suffered the most from the negative environmental impacts of large scale utility plants. Expanding access to more affordable renewable energy solutions within these communities will reduce carbon while helping low and middle income communities become more resilient financially.

3. We must develop and scale climate solutions that serve people with low incomes, the rising middle class, and emerging markets globally.

If we are to solve climate change we must develop and scale solutions for all markets. Using micromobility solutions as an example, Geoff Eisenberg, of Ecosystem Integrity Partners, made a point that really drove home why we must focus on developing solutions that serve emerging markets, domestically and in developing countries, that have high populations of low-income and poverty level citizens as well as a rising middle-class.

Geoff Eisenberg: “Enabling new markets outside the U.S. to leapfrog the mistakes that we made around hydrocarbon energy generation and hydrocarbon-based transportation is not a nice-to-have, – it’s a must-have. If the two billion people who are rising up into the middle-class go through the same processes that we went through, it’s over. We’ll be at 6℃ by the end of the century. So we’ve invested in solar battery mini-grid developers in Africa and electric motor scooter operators in Africa where we think there’s an opportunity to leapfrog past some of the mistakes that we’ve made.”  

Spreading the use of affordable electric bikes and scooters and other micromobility solutions can also help reduce pollution that causes asthma and other health challenges that primarily impact low and middle income communities.  

4. Proximate entrepreneurs develop innovative solutions that address the unique needs of their communities. 

The most creative and effective solutions often come from entrepreneurs who represent or have deep ties to the communities that are being affected by the challenge. To solve challenges in low and moderate income communities and communities of color, we need to invest in entrepreneurs from these communities. Alex Amouyel noted that MIT Solve seeks to invest in proximate solutions. She gave an example of an innovative proximate solution called ISeeChange which is based out of New Orleans and developed by an entrepreneur with deep ties to the Gulf.

Alex Amouyel: “It is a citizen journalism platform that is mobilizing communities to share microdata about climate impacts in their streets and their cities and their communities. Through that, they are rebuilding data, bottom-up, that can be used by cities and climate scientists to really understand how the climate is changing in a city like New Orleans.”

Later Alex noted that it is equally important that entrepreneurs working on these kinds of solutions are able to tap into supplies of capital aligned investors who prioritize impact. She said, “the patience of the capital and the impact alignment of the capital are really important for impact-aligned entrepreneurs to succeed. That makes the difference between where they can spend their time.”

That kind of impact capital is needed at every stage, from getting something up off the ground and throughout each later stage as the solution achieves scale. 

5. Funders must consider the social impact – in addition to the environmental impact – of a climate solution.  

There are powerful ways to change your screening process to seek out solutions that solve for both social and environmental challenges. Geoff Eisenberg offered this example of how their screens evolved over time to incorporate a climate justice lens:

Geoff Eisenberg: “We’re looking at an electric truck company that electrified a diesel truck. It’s great that you cut carbon emissions, but most ports and distribution centers are also in low to moderate-income communities and those people suffer massively higher rates of asthma and other health problems due to PM (particulate matter) 2.5 pollution. Let’s focus on getting the diesel out of those communities and have this wonderful impact of having these great trucks that solve a bunch of problems all at once.”

It is essential that the folks solving for climate include a justice component. We don’t want the solutions to climate change to make existing social inequalities significantly worse.  

Conclusion

In our conversation we covered a variety of approaches, but we only scratched the surface of many promising solutions for climate change. Though we did not have enough time to cover all the possibilities, we hope that this session inspires effective climate action – whether that action is around how you allocate your capital or philanthropic dollars, how you turn your entrepreneurial ideas into action, or simply how you use your voice and votes.

To learn about other opportunities to drive impact on climate change, watch the video or read the full transcript of our Shift Conversation, How Can We Effectively Mobilize Impact Capital for Climate Action and Climate Justice?

To watch the full interview, click here

Nicole Davis is a Partner and Senior Wealth Manager at Veris Wealth Partners. Nicole specializes in creating highly impactful private investment portfolios, tailored to clients’ thematic interests. She also serves as a consultant to the Envestnet Impact Investing Solutions Platform and is a member of the Veris Investment Committee. Prior to joining Veris, Nicole was Portfolio Manager and Assistant Vice President with Bank of Hawaii’s Private Client Asset Management Team, where she constructed portfolios, performed equity research, and directly managed over $300 million in client assets.