Sara Grillo is a manager with hedge fund advisor Diamond Oak Capital Advisors and the topic of a recent Bloomberg article. What about Grillo intrigued editors enough to profile her? Without having spoken to anyone over there an educated guess would have to be her ability to overcome obstacles and in doing so, set examples for females trying to break into a male-dominated field. Obstacles such as:
Work in a bar. That was a friend’s suggestion for Harvard graduate Sara Grillo after she was laid off from Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. in 2008. Two years later, the hedge-fund analyst is campaigning to get more women into top financial jobs. Grillo, 32, who co-manages hedge fund advisor Diamond Oak Capital Advisors LLC, found herself among 225,000 unemployed finance workers that year as the subprime market collapsed. “If I were a tall, broad shouldered, gray-haired, 50-year- old man with the same credentials, nobody would have suggested I take a job for less than one eighth of my salary,” said Grillo in a telephone interview from her home in Queens, New York City.
2) The fail rate of the venerable CFA exams
Dismayed by friends’ suggestions that she quit finance, Grillo vowed to help more women join the industry, setting a goal of raising the proportion of women Chartered Financial Analysts to 50 percent from the current 19 percent. “I’m a CFA charterholder and I always look women right in the face and tell them that if I did it, they can do it as well...I wanted those letters after my name so badly,” she said. “If it took me 80 years, it was going to say, ‘Sara Grillo, CFA’ on my tombstone.”
3) Cheapskate boyfriends who apparently deserve to be called out in publications read by millions of people.
Grillo said she and her boyfriend were faced with a choice between a platinum, gold or silver engagement ring. He said he didn’t care which one she chose so long as it was the cheapest. Grillo did care, so she dumped him and invested the money for the wedding in Commercial Metals Co. a small-cap stock that made her as much as 300 percent in profit.