This post by Kristin Hull, of Nia Impact Capital, is part of a series in which IEN members share their thinking about intentional endowment investing to address racial injustice and other diversity, equity, and inclusion themes. Follow along to read members' insights into DEI and the "S" factor in ESG."
Kristin Hull, Founder & CEO of Nia Impact Capital
From taking a knee to blacking out our social media, to raising our fists in protest, many of us are experiencing outrage, frustration, anguish, and empathy for all that is unfolding in our country. From committing to learn about white privilege, to taking steps to dismantle systemic racism and white supremacy, to donating to organizations supporting racial justice, and shopping at Black owned businesses near our homes and online, many of us are stepping up to support in all of the ways we know how.
2020 has seen an unraveling of our social contracts, and as we look to rebuild our economy and reweave our society, it’s time to center the black community and those previously marginalized from planning and decision making tables.
Most people who identify as investors in the United States and around the world are white and male. Yes, we have a long way to go to shift just who sees themselves as an investor, and who has access to investment accounts. For those with assets to invest, a starting question might be, "How much is enough?" For those that have more than enough for their own families or organizations, donations in the form of support for Black organizations working on racial justice may be an appropriate first action.
Due to a history of systemic racism and slavery in the US, the net worth of a typical white family is ten times that of a black family, and thus for many-- engaging in wealth redistribution may be a meaningful objective.
To have the current crisis become a turning point and a move toward true transformation, investors can--and must-- play a significant role, by adopting a racial equity lens when making investment allocations. Below I have outlined 8 simple steps to incorporate a racial justice lens when making investment decisions. I have also included simple ways to consider a commitment to racial equity within the Investor Policy Statement.