Born and raised in Los Angeles, Liz comes from a multigenerational ilk of teachers. She reluctantly went into the “family business” after graduating from the University of California, Los Angeles, with a BA in psychology. But this plan was soon disrupted: during a summer visit with a close and very progressive aunt, a chance visit to a bustling Wall Street sealed her new professional direction—finance.
“My aunt first became a Catholic nun, later married a Davis Cup tennis competitor and worked her way up to the senior editor position for Seventeen magazine,” Liz said. “Her memory still inspires me to believe that with focus and hard work you can do anything you want regardless of where and how you begin.”
With New York her new home, Liz tackled some graduate-school finance courses and landed her first nonteaching job with a public relations firm. She’d quickly apply her new training to handle financial and shareholder communications for global firm McDonald’s, iconic model train maker Lionel, and several asset managers and mutual funds.
In 1986, Liz’s employer was acquired by Alliance Capital, the first of several corporate marriages that began her upward career path toward her current leadership role at AB. “I began writing the mutual fund shareholder newsletters, then was promoted to running advertising, promotion and marketing, and was soon asked to handle institutional sales, even though I had no experience selling,” she said.
“I believe my promotions into new areas simply came down to trust—and an ability to develop strong relationships with clients by putting their interests first. When your clients trust you, they want to invest with the company you work for.”
Trust is also at the root of AB’s collegial employee environment, which stems from a culture of diversity and inclusion. Now 30-plus years into her AB tenure, Liz has seen much change and improvement in this area but continues to do her part to further the cause, noting “we can always do more to encourage diversity of backgrounds and thought.”
In this vein, Liz is a key proponent of AB’s Employee Resource Groups (ERGs), which are employee-led groups created to accelerate the advancement of employees from traditionally underrepresented groups, allies who support those groups, and people who share a common purpose, interest or background.