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Championing diversity

LGIM’s Helena Morrissey gains royal recognition

Helena Morrissey, chairman of Newton Investment Management Ltd., poses for a photograph during the Women In Finance Summit in London, U.K., on Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2017. The decision to leave the European Union is expected to take a heavy toll on the public finances over the coming years. Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

A prominent figure in the money management industry has been recognized for her work in promoting diversity in financial services in the Queen's Birthday Honors 2017.

Helena Morrissey, head of personal investing at Legal & General Investment Management Ltd., was appointed Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire this month for her work on the topic.

A note accompanying the list of more than 1,000 people recognized in the honors list and published on the U.K. government website highlighted Ms. Morrissey's work in the field of diversity. She founded the 30% Club in 2010, which aimed to achieve 30% female representation on U.K. corporate boards by 2015 — an initiative that has been emulated in 11 countries, information on the website showed. She also set up and leads the Diversity Project, an industry initiative that aims to improve diversity in all parts of the investment and savings industry.

Ms. Morrissey additionally chairs the gender equality campaign of Business in the Community, one of The Prince's Charities.

"For so many years, so many women have been criticized, punished even, rather than honored for their work on gender equality — it feels such a wonderful sign of progress to be awarded a Damehood for just doing my small part," Ms. Morrissey said in a statement provided by a spokeswoman for LGIM. "It makes me feel very confident about the future for young women — and grateful to all those who have preceded me."

Ms. Morrissey was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the 2012 New Year's Honors list for services to U.K. business.