Nicole Spinelli was named director of the Raymond James Network for Women Advisors, the company said.
She succeeds Karen Julien, branch manager of the Raymond James & Associates Carillon office in St. Petersburg, Fla., who continues to be a member of the network's advisory council.
Raymond James Financial has 4,523 financial advisors in its independent and retail branches, and 630, or 14%, are women.
"Nicole's professional background--as well as her thorough understanding of the unique needs faced by women advisors and their clients--means she is very well-prepared to lead the Network," said Dennis Zank, president of Raymond James & Associates, in a statement on May 26.
"She is passionate about advancing the success of our women advisors through networking and coaching opportunities, and I'm very happy to welcome her to the role of director," he added.
Spinelli has been part of the network for more than eight years, working with previous directors to develop and coordinate educational programs for the firm's women financial advisors.
The change in leadership will not affect the programs and events sponsored by the network, the company says.
Networks events include the annual Raymond James Women's Symposium held each fall in St. Petersburg. And special sessions that highlight issues for female advisors also take place during the firm's regional business-development conferences that are held every quarter across the United States.
In addition, the network organizes monthly practice-management conference calls and web-based sessions
"I plan to continue to broaden the scope of the network's offerings," said Spinelli in a phone interview.
"We have programs focusing on 'working smarter' instead of harder and also have a well structured professional coaching program that we have been offering to our women advisors for over six years. We are currently working to establish a speaker's bureau to leverage the knowledge of some of our top women advisors within the communities in which they live," she explained.
Spinelli would also like the industry to help boost the number of women entering the financial-services industry as advisors. "Girls aren't aspiring to grow up and be financial advisors and that needs to change," she said.