Several hundred advisors from around the country joined together at Financial Advisor magazine’s 5th Annual Invest in Women conference to discuss financial issues facing women today.

The event, held in Atlanta April 29-May 1, attracted more than 450 attendees and was the magazine’s biggest Invest in Women conference to date. It’s the only independent national event to provide a forum that primarily features women speaking on financial planning topics.

The conference’s lineup of keynote speakers included Dr. Bernice A. King, daughter of Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King and CEO of the King Center; Laura L. Carstensen, director of the Stanford Center on Longevity; Lara Logan, an award-winning broadcast journalist; Lauren Simmons, who became the youngest and only full-time female trader on the New York Stock Exchange; Christina Boris, vice president and client research director for OppenheimerFunds; and Marlena Lee, co-head of research for Dimensional Fund Advisors.

Dr. King, whose father was assassinated shortly after her fifth birthday, filled her speech with motivational advice and devoted much of it to her mother. “My mother told us you don’t have to be your dad,” she recalled. “You don’t have to be me. You just have to be your best self.”

“I grew up knowing that I am an answer to a question and a solution to a problem.

“You are in this world for a reason,” Dr. King continued. “Martin Luther King was just an ordinary individual. He understood he was here for a reason.”

The conference was kicked off by Boris, who revealed new research on high-net-worth women that is part of OppenheimerFunds’ “Generations Project.” The study found that 97% of high-net-worth women are sticking with their advisors and are comfortable with them calling the shots.

Most high-net-worth women (92%), the report said, play an active role in financial decision-making for their households. However, men are more likely to assert themselves as head in that role. At the same time, married high-net-worth women are more likely than married high-net-worth men to say they share the responsibility.

The conference featured a live-streamed session sponsored by RBC Wealth Management. During the session, Nancy Carlson, a children’s book author and illustrator, described the strange changes she gradually noticed in her husband of 38 years. Carlson eventually learned he suffered from frontotemporal degeneration (FTD), a rare form of dementia, but not before the couple was financially ruined by poor decisions that he made after he got the disease.

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