Money manager Richard Bernstein Advisors LLC is funding a new scholarship at Atlanta-based Spelman College to promote diversity at its firm as well as the overall money management industry.
The Richard Bernstein Scholarship at Spelman College, a women's and historically black college in Atlanta, will include tuition assistance for a selected student's junior and senior years, as well as a summer internship.
Richard Bernstein, the firm's CEO and chief investment officer, said in an email this is the fifth scholarship he and his wife are sponsoring to support Black and minority students, stemming primarily from his desire to increase diversity at his firm.
While the firm has been able to increase its gender diversity over the past 10 years — two of its top five executives are women — Mr. Bernstein said it was time to address his frustration with the lack of Black and minority employees.
"I became immensely frustrated RBA lacked diversity regardless of whether we tried hiring through search firms or through 'opportunity' websites and organizations," he said. "In addition, we lacked an established network that might supply potential candidates. So, I decided to take matters into my own hands. I knew (Spelman College President) Mary Schmidt Campbell from a board we both sit on, and contacted her with the scholarship/internship idea. We worked with her team to come up with a meaningful solution."
The recipient will be chosen jointly by RBA and college faculty and will rotate among each of RBA's departments to give them exposure to as many aspects of the money management industry as possible, said a joint news release.
"We're looking forward to watching our scholarship recipients become the change that will help the financial industry remain competitive," Ms. Campbell said in the news release.
As of June 30, RBA had more than $10 billion in assets under management.