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American College Names Leader Focused on Empowering Black Community

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The American College of Financial Services has named Karim Hill executive director of its Center for Economic Empowerment and Equality, which it launched late last summer.

The center is dedicated to helping combat racial inequality and promote wealth creation and upward mobility in the Black community. Its Four Steps Forward pillars include developing the next generation of Black leaders in financial services firms and recruiting and retaining more Black professionals in the industry along with developing financial literacy programs for Black women and creating wealth in Black communities.

Hill is the co-founder of the Black Vanguard Alliance, an organization dedicated to improving the finances, education, safety and well-being of the Black community by empowering Black leaders and non-Black allies. He spent two decades working in financial services, at Wells Fargo, Bank of America, Capital One and Citizens Bank and most recently served as president and Chief Executive officer of the New England Business Association.

“Karim brings a unique skillset to the College that complements our near century in financial services, having earned significant career success at some of our nation’s largest banks,” said George Nichols III, president and CEO of The American College, said in a statement, glad that the college’s “exhaustive national search has come to an end.”

Hill noted in a statement that the “inaugural position is an exceptional opportunity” for him to “take part in re-imagining how the financial services industry approaches diversity, equity and inclusion.” Hill said he will focus on “developing and implementing viable actionable plans” to create “sustainable, generational change that will help narrow the wealth gap and have a lasting effect on how the profession best serves an increasingly diverse nation.”

A recent report from Cerulli Associates found that “the wealth management industry has a diversity problem.” It noted that Blacks account for just under 3% of financial advisors although they account for over 14% of the population.