50 Women Can Change the World in Finance
No more business as usual.
Embrace your power to alter the paradigm.
Join with 49 other influential women leaders and emerging leaders in Finance from diverse backgrounds to harness the Power Tools and build a vibrant community to thrive in your career while changing the world of finance. 
Recent promotions of women to top U.S. exchange leadership positions are a step in the right direction.

We applaud the recognition of female talent at the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ. Yet, we are still a long way from gender parity in financial industry leadership. 

According to Catalyst’s statistics, while women comprise between 30% and 57% of U.S. financial industry employees, depending on sector, they make up only between 13% and 30% of Executive/Senior-Level roles.

Why does it matter?
Overwhelming evidence links gender parity to innovation and better financial performance, especially during times of transformation and disruption:
  •  S&P Composite 1500 analysis found firms with women in top management roles experienced an increase in “innovation intensity” – and were worth an average of US $40 million more than those with only male leaders.
  •  Teams with more women have been shown to be better at analysis, coordination, planning and problem solving.  
  •  30% female representation on boards can increase company net profits by 6% per findings from a Peterson Institute report.
Source: EY.com “Placing gender on the financial services agenda” 
“A year ago at your workshop I set my personal action plan goal to become a vice president at my firm. I used the Use what you’ve got Power Tool to differentiate myself and demonstrate my value to the company. Today, I was informed I am being promoted to vice president.”
 - Valerie Brown Grant, Senior VP, Alliance Bernstein
No Ordinary Leadership Program
Our research-based core curriculum was developed by co-founder and president of Take The Lead, Gloria Feldt and based on her bestselling book No Excuses: 9 Ways Women Can Change How We Think About Power and her "9 Leadership Power Tools to Advance Your Career."

Our approach is to teach women how to lead themselves, their careers, and their organizations and systems changes in a holistic way. It is the only program designed to meet the unique opportunities – and challenges – women experience in their industries.

To prepare women in each industry or sector, this program complements in-person training with inspiring speakers, networking events, virtual training, coaching, and facilitation of the development and planning for a collaborative action plan – designed by each cohort – to propel women to greater heights and to truly change the world.

Research-based learning

Executive coaching

Group mastermind & knowledge exchange

Relevant insights from industry experts

In-person training

"I got my power back, I got my voice back, and an unapologetic fierceness."
- Dena Trakes Patton
Our comprehensive four-pillar approach cracks the code and provides the breakthrough women need
Teaches practical “Power Tool” skills
 Connects with mentoring, coaching, and cohort building
 Presents role models
 Drives change with thought leadership
Changing the narrative
We change the focus from obsession with problems to shining a laser beam on the solutions—what is working to advance women toward parity, including internal and external thought leadership.
Unique curriculum
Our program directly addresses women’s relationship with power and intention, internal and external barriers, and changes the paradigm from the outdated “power over” to a more current, collaborative and creative “power TO”—an approach better suited to the very women’s leadership styles that bring higher profits. 

It’s like rocket fuel for the soul, and we see women lift off with confidence, joy, and authenticity. You’ll know yourself better at the end and you will find yourself leading more powerfully and intentionally. During the program, each woman creates her own Strategic Leadership Action Plan to put what she has learned into action.
Collaboration as a core value
This isn't about us, it is about you. Each 50 Women cohort collaborates on a group project and intentionally creates a powerful network to support one another’s success.
Stake in the ground
If you don’t measure it, it doesn’t happen. We keep tabs on crucial impacts. 90% of participants implement their Strategic Leadership Action Plans and claim higher levels of intentionality about their goals and their comfort with embracing their Power TO achieve them. We aim for nothing less than gender parity by 2025. 
Learning Objectives
Embrace a New Definition of Power
Gain a sophisticated understanding of power and redefine it so you can fully assess and embrace your own power and use it with confidence, intention, and joy
Leverage Your Personal Power with Actionable Tools
Achieve your leadership intentions by leveraging an inclusive model for power and the 9 Leadership Power Tools
Increase Self-Awareness
Increase your self-awareness through an experiential and insightful Power Journey
Advance Your Career
Understand the factors that lead to career derailment and replace them with tools and resources necessary to succeed and advance in your career
Plan to Achieve Your Goals
Set aspirational goals for your career, your firm and the finance sector and design a Strategic Leadership Action Plan to achieve them
Drive Change - Together
Develop a collaborative action plan with a network of like-minded finance leaders to drive meaningful change in the industry and the world
Addresses Specific Finance Sector Challenges
You can expect to
  • ​Master the 9 Leadership Power Tools to use them effectively in your firm and in the industry
  •  Embrace industry and economic structural change and identify opportunities for your career, your firm and the industry
  • ​Create a Strategic Leadership Action Plan, aligned with firm and industry initiatives, to stay on track and achieve your goals
  •  Develop effective strategies for networking with purpose and negotiating with confidence in high-stress situations
  •  ​Use a strengths-based assessment to identify opportunities to improve relationships and communications and engage others effectively
  • ​Employ techniques for navigating difficult situations and people within the industry
  • ​Discover meaningful ways to promote yourself and manage your professional brand
  • Tap into methods for managing stress
“I have attended training that cost $30,000 and it wasn’t as good and useful as this one.” 
—Lori Chillingworth, Executive Vice President, Zion’s Bank
Are you one of 50 Women Who Can Change the World in Finance?
Stop waiting for the world to change.

You have the capacity to accelerate culture change for both women and men within finance. This is the Power of the Cohort and of its collective energy and action.

This unique program is targeted to the needs of aspiring, high-potential mid-level and executive-level women in all finance sectors. 

Ideal candidates have a strong desire to create a new narrative for themselves around their individual personal power and use it to contribute at a higher level within their organizations and to drive industry change.

Take The Lead's 50 Women Can Change The World program requires participants’ willingness to be intellectually curious, to have the courage to amplify their voices, and to commit to the immersive and collaborative learning experience.

Learn more about how this comprehensive program will propel your career, your firm, and the industry: Schedule a call with Laura Smith Dunaief, the program's Lead Trainer today!
or in three payment installments of $2,000 each.
  • When: The next cohort kicks off soon! Contact Laura Smith Dunaief for details. 
  • Where: The experience takes place both online and in-person. In-person elements will be held in New York City.
  • Program Investment: $5,450. includes four in-person training days, all virtual training sessions, two hours of private coaching, participation in the cohort's private online community, and in-person networking sessions.
  • A payment plan is also available: three installments of $2,000 each.
Program Format
Take The Lead's 50 Women Can Change the World in Finance is designed as a three-month experience, including: 
  • Four immersion days of intensive and collaborative in-person training
  • Regular virtual online sessions with deeper content dives, inspiring speakers and peer coaching
  • Two hours of private, one-on-one coaching on the execution of your Strategic Leadership Action Plan
  • Virtual group coaching sessions
  • Private, moderated online group
  • Networking events with industry leaders
  • Follow up at regular milestones – up to 1 year – to assess your progress and provide support around your Strategic Leadership Action Plan
Program Speakers
To be announced
Leading the Charge

Laura Smith Dunaief

Lead trainer and Director of Take The Lead’s Leadership Ambassador program
Laura has 20 years of experience in retail and wholesale financial services, during which she led operations, sales, and trading organizations and company-wide initiatives. Since 2003, Laura has consulted extensively to investment, private and commercial banks and trading organizations to design and deliver leadership and management training initiatives. She is an active member of the Financial Women's Association, contributing to its "next generation" initiatives as a mentor and Wall Street Exchange program co-chair and as a member of the FWA's Operations Resource Committee.

Gloria Feldt

Co-Founder and President of Take The Lead
A nationally known expert in women, power, and leadership, she was named by Vanity Fair as one of America’s top 200 women legends, leaders, and trailblazers. She is a NY Times bestselling author and former president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. The 50 Women Can Change the World programs are based on Gloria’s extensive research underpinning her latest book, No Excuses: Nine Ways Women Can Change How We Think About Power. A professor of practice at Arizona State University, she is an in-demand keynote speaker, a Glamour Woman of the Year, and recently named to “Forbes 40 Over 40.”
Honorary Co-Chairs
  • Rosie Rios – former Treasurer of the United States
  • Stacey Tisdale – on-air financial journalist,  President & CEO of Mind Money Media Inc.
  •  Jacki Zehner – co-founder of Women Moving Millions; first female trader invited into the partnership at Goldman Sachs
Advisory Committee Members
  • Marline Alexander - First Vice President, BHI USA; 2018 Crain's Notable Woman in Finance
  • Cara Fleisher - Managing Director, Global Credit/Loan Portfolio Management - RBC Capital Markets
  • Maria Giraldo - Managing Director, Guggenheim Partners
  • Taylor Hanex - Senior Vice President, Senior Financial Advisor, Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Inc
  •  Donna Parisi - Partner and Global Head of Finance, Shearman & Sterling LLP
  • Anita Sands - former UBS Group Managing Director and COO and Head of Change Leadership, and current board director of three public companies
"I was ready to throw the towel in. I was stuck in, what felt like, middle management. The penny dropped during your session. Why did I assume that leaders can guess what I want just because I have shown them what I can do? I initiated discussions with the Head of IT, Head of Transformation and our Chief Operating Officer on leading key initiatives using Power Tools 1-4. This training gives me more power to march ahead to push the envelope."
- International Women’s Forum Fellow in the Banking Industry
Frequently Asked Questions
What sectors of finance does this program address?
This program is open to participants from all sectors of finance, including investment banking, asset management, wealth management, trading, commercial banking, fintech, and finance roles at non-financial firms. 
Where will the immersion sessions take place? 
The on-site portion of the program will occur at sites in New York City. Specific locations will be announced soon. 
How much does it cost to register?
The program components, including four days of immersion training, a minimum of two virtual sessions, two hours of one-on-one coaching, plus meals, private networking events and supplemental course materials would cost upwards of $10,000 if priced separately.
Your total cost for the complete program is $5,450, if paid in advance. A payment installment plan, three payments of $2,000, is also available.

We are working to make a limited number of partial scholarships available. Contact the lead trainer to inquire further. 
How do I obtain an invoice if my firm is paying for me?
When you receive your acceptance email, simply provide the appropriate contact information, and we will direct invoice to your firm. 
Can I recommend more than one person?
Absolutely. Complete a recommendation form for each qualified, prospective participant.
What is the maximum number of participants that can attend from one firm? 
To ensure a mix of participants from different firms and roles, we cap the number of participants from a single firm at five (5). If your firm wishes to enroll more, we can discuss ways to bring this experience into your firm - or to reserve spots in our next cohort.
Do I have to attend every immersion day session?
Participation is essential to the success of the program. By agreeing to participate in the cohort you’re making a commitment to the selected group of women and yourself. That said, we understand that things happen. Please contact us should you have a conflict with any of the dates.
Can I purchase additional coaching sessions?
Yes. Post-program coaching packages are available at a 20% discount to cohort participants. 
How do I recommend a speaker or topic? 
We are always open to receiving recommendations for speakers or topics that will directly address the challenges of women in finance or who will inspire the cohort. Please, feel free to email the lead trainer to make a suggestion.
My firm is interested in becoming a program sponsor. How does this work?
A limited number of sponsorship opportunities are available.

To donate to provide a scholarship for a program participant, go to https://www.taketheleadwomen.com/donate. Take The Lead is a 501(c)3 tax exempt nonprofit organization. Your contributions are tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law.

For all other sponsorship questions, contact laurasmith@taketheleadwomen.com.
I’m not able to participate in this cohort. How can I stay engaged with the program?
To be placed on the list to join a future cohort, email the lead trainer, and we’ll notify you when we announce our next program. 

You might also be interested in being a program sponsor or providing a scholarship for a program participant.
I'm a member of the press/media and want to cover this event or interview a 50 Women Can participant, presenter or lead trainer. Who should I contact?
 Press and media inquiries can be sent to the lead trainer.
Companies Leading the Way in Finance
Take The Lead’s 50 Women Can Change the World in Finance leadership program is possible with generous support from partners & sponsors.

Want to show your support for women’s leadership? Become a sponsor for a 50 Women Can Change The World in Finance program by contacting Laura.
What is Take The Lead?
Take The Lead is a 501c3 nonprofit organization whose mission is to prepare, develop, inspire and propel women to take their fair and equal share of leadership positions across all sectors by 2025.

Learn from best-selling author Gloria Feldt, co-founder of Take The Lead and a national expert on leadership, and from a diverse slate of certified Take The Lead Leadership Ambassadors.

Apply Now
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