A reflection from Lincoln’s Chief Diversity Officer and Executive Sponsors of the Lincoln Women’s Business Resource Group
by Allison Green Johnson, SVP, Chief Diversity Officer, Head of Culture and Engagement; Lucy Gase, SVP, Enterprise Services; and Wendy Boyd, SVP, Head of ABGA, co-head of Lincoln Financial Securities
At Lincoln Financial, we are committed to creating opportunities for our female employees – and all of our employees – to grow, thrive and succeed in their careers. Earlier this week, Lincoln announced its executive succession plan, including that Ellen Cooper, currently executive vice president, chief investment officer, head of Enterprise Risk and our Annuity Solutions group, will succeed Dennis Glass as president and CEO in May 2022.
As Lincoln’s chief diversity officer and executive sponsors of the company’s Women’s Business Resource Group (BRG), we want to take a moment to celebrate Ellen and reflect on what her appointment means to us, the women of Lincoln and to the women of the financial services industry.
For us, we’re so incredibly proud of this moment as it underscores Lincoln’s commitment to creating an inclusive workplace and the mission of the Women’s BRG – to inspire women to seek their highest level of personal and professional potential and provide opportunities to leverage their strengths to reach company goals. It is also a moment to recognize the incredible leadership from Dennis Glass and our board of directors for their role in advancing Lincoln’s longstanding commitment to equality.
Since the 1920s, women have held leadership positions at Lincoln when Helen Williams, one of the first women in the United States to successfully complete the actuarial exam, joined the company and became a supervisor. Today, women comprise 61% of Lincoln’s workforce, hold 51% of all management positions, 41% of the executive positions and represent 31% of the board of directors. In May 2022, Ellen will help add another milestone for the women of Lincoln – 1 woman president and CEO.
Not only is this a milestone for Lincoln but also for the financial services industry. Our industry has spent many years focused on trying to improve its demographics. It hasn’t been easy, especially with roles at a more senior level. The shift has been happening one step — and one person — at a time. We’re elated that Lincoln is part of that shift and we know Ellen is honored to be “one person” in that change.
Her appointment is a true testament to career advancement, opportunity and equality for the women of Lincoln and the women of the financial services industry. We look forward to what’s ahead for Lincoln with Ellen’s leadership and continued guidance from Dennis and our board.