Bill McGinnis, CFA Named CFA Institute Volunteer of the Year for His Creation of the Global Putting Investors First Investor Protection Initiative

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Bill's focused effort to promote the rights and protection of all investors has gone global to over 45 countries in only two years. Putting Investors First Month has become an important educational opportunity for individuals, regulators, and politicians across the globe.

Bill McGinnis, CFA - CFA Institute Volunteer of the Year

As an organization, we are committed to and understand that doing what’s best for society truly is the right way to go. It’s a privilege to help carry that message to the public.

Following the May 2015 third anniversary of the global Putting Investors First initiative, Bill McGinnis, CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) of CFA Society Milwaukee has been recognized as CFA Institute Volunteer of the Year. Mr. McGinnis was presented the award at a global leadership conference in London, England hosted by CFA Institute, the global association of investment professionals.

Mr. McGinnis has provided leadership globally related to the Putting Investors First initiative and within CFA Society Milwaukee at several levels. In 2013, when Mr. McGinnis was President of CFA Society Milwaukee, the society won the first-ever global CFA Institute Most Innovative Project award related to his efforts in conceptualizing and creating Putting Investors First. His work, which included a proclamation by Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker first establishing Putting Investors First Day on May 31, 2013, led to Putting Investors First Month being celebrated during the month of May across the globe in 2014 and 2015.

Putting Investors First Month is focused on encouraging financial professionals to place the interests of investors above their own, and building awareness of investors, political representatives, regulators, and media of that duty to protect investor interests. Putting Investors First Month has been celebrated across the globe throughout May 2015. Over 95 CFA societies (66% of all societies globally) in 45 countries, representing 85,000 CFA Institute members, have participated.

In accepting the CFA Institute Volunteer of the Year award from among over 130,000 members, Mr. McGinnis said “This award is a tremendous honor. CFA charterholders comprise one of the most dedicated, professional, and ethical organizations not only in the investment community, but also in the world. I’m tremendously proud of the CFA Institute mission, which is ‘to lead the investment profession globally by promoting the highest standards of ethics, education, and professional excellence for the ultimate benefit of society.’ It’s exceptionally rare that a professional organization focuses on society, rather than its own members. As an organization, we are committed to and understand that doing what’s best for society truly is the right way to go. It’s a privilege to help carry that message to the public.”

Mr. McGinnis says “The idea for Putting Investors First was based on an initiative of the CFA Institute called The Future of Finance. The Future of Finance is an ambitious project, announced in early 2013, that is a long-term, global effort to shape a trustworthy, forward-thinking financial industry that better serves society. Putting Investors First is intended to assist in communicating the important outputs of The Future of Finance project to the world. It’s wonderful that the CFA Institute is now carrying the ball on this project with the participation of CFA societies worldwide.“

In only three years, Putting Investors First has become a global success. Over the last two years, CFA Institute member societies have held ceremonies for the opening or closing of ten different securities exchanges, including the New York Stock Exchange, NASDAQ, the Chicago Board Options Exchange, and the London Stock Exchange to call attention to the importance of investment professionals putting investor interests first. In addition to Gov. Scott Walker’s proclamation of Putting Investors First, the governors of nine other states also issued proclamations. Related to the initiative, the CFA Institute also held events with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) in May 2015. The Statement of Investor Rights (more information provided below) has now been translated into over 20 languages.

CFA Society Milwaukee kicked off this year’s celebration with Governor Scott Walker, for the third year, proclaiming Putting Investors First Day in the Wisconsin on May 13, 2015. That day coincided with CFA Society Milwaukee’s sponsorship of Make A Difference – Wisconsin’s annual Investment Conference fundraiser. The CFA Society has partnered for eight years in promoting and furthering Make A Difference – Wisconsin’s mission of providing financial literacy programs and resources that empower students to make sound financial decisions now and throughout their lifetimes. In recognition of the CFA Society’s frequent role as the number one supplier of volunteers to educate students in the inner city and beyond, as well as its continuing financial partnership, Make A Difference – Wisconsin named the CFA Society Milwaukee its Difference Maker Organization of the Year in 2014. In 2013, Make A Difference – Wisconsin received a Governor’s Financial Literacy Award for their efforts in promoting financial literacy among Wisconsin citizens. CFA Society Milwaukee is already planning a Wisconsin Putting Investors First month for May 2016.

To further celebrate Putting Investors First Month, the Board of CFA Society Milwaukee each individually endorsed the CFA Institute’s Statement of Investor Rights and offered its entire membership the opportunity to provide their endorsement as well. The rights were developed by CFA Institute to advise buyers of financial services products of the conduct they are entitled to expect from financial services providers. These ten rights reflect the fundamental ethical principles that are critical to achieving confidence and trust in any professional relationship. The CFA Society Milwaukee has promoted the Statement of Investor Rights as a major component of its Putting Investors First efforts over the last three years. The CFA Society and CFA Institute designed the Rights to apply to financial products and services such as investment management, research and advice, personal banking, insurance, and real estate and should be demanded by consumers.

Following the recognition of Mr. McGinnis as CFA Institute Volunteer of the Year, Jim Fleming, President of the CFA Society Milwaukee said “From the beginning, Bill saw and planned Putting Investors First as a global project. Bill’s tireless efforts in creating and promoting this project have already generated lasting dividends for investors across the globe. I am excited to see this movement, that Bill started, grow.”

In addition to Mr. McGinnis’ efforts related to Putting Investors First and his Presidency of CFA Society Milwaukee (2013/2014), the Awards Committee also considered his six years on the Board of the CFA Society, three executive officer positions, and attendance at five global leadership conferences (Scotland, Hong Kong, London, and Washington, D.C. twice) and multiple Americas leadership conferences as both a presenter and participant. He is also an instructor in investment industry standards of practice and ethics for the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee, a judge in the CFA Institute’s college Investment Research Challenge, a CFA Institute approved speaker on career development issues, and is a volunteer on the exam writing team for the U. S. Series 65 and 66 securities licenses. The Committee also noted Mr. McGinnis’ work on his personal project – Team Comet Dog, which is a charitable organization raising money for wounded soldiers. As a part of this effort, Mr. McGinnis is writing a children’s photo-story book for soldiers and their families about deployment; it is titled The Adventures of The Comet Dog: Missing Someone Is Hard. The book’s completed chapters are available free online (as will be the completed book) at The Comet Dog website (http://www.TheCometDog.com).

Bill McGinnis, CFA lives in the Bay View community of Milwaukee, WI, where he is the owner and founder of three companies: Professional Meeting Facilitator, LLC (in meeting facilitation, Bill manages the content and discussion of strategic and other meetings nationwide to maximize success), Exponential Careers (a national strategic career advisory and consulting firm), and W. McGinnis Advisors, LLC (a securities expert witness firm working in the U.S. and internationally). Previously, he worked for various firms as a portfolio manager, sell-side investment analyst, buy-side investment analyst, and in investment banking. Mr. McGinnis was awarded the CFA charter in 1989. He was a 1982 graduate of Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, Michigan, with majors in Finance and Management Information Systems. He was an Honors College graduate, Presidential Scholar, and graduated magna cum laude. He graduated from Williamston High School, Williamston, Michigan, in 1978, where he was recognized as Youth of the Year in the same year.

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CFA Society Milwaukee
CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) Society of Milwaukee is an association of over 600 investment professionals primarily in Milwaukee and eastern Wisconsin. The Society is one of 144 local societies of the CFA Institute. The Society follows the shared core values of professional excellence, integrity, strength of community and cooperation, and volunteer service. The CFA designation is a professional accreditation often held by investment managers, investment analysts, and other experienced and accomplished investment professionals. It demonstrates a mastery of the skills most needed for investment analysis and decision making in today’s fast-evolving global financial industry and is recognized as one of the most difficult of all professional designations to attain. Professionals holding the designation or sitting for the required three examinations must annually pledge adherence to the CFA Institute Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct, which are among the most stringent in the industry. The CFA designation has been referred to as the Gold Standard in the investment profession. For more information, visit http://www.cfamilwaukee.org.

Putting Investors First Month – May 2015
Putting Investors First Month is a global initiative created to encourage financial professionals to place the interests of investors above their own, and build awareness of the duty to protect investor interests. The event is presented as a collaborative effort by societies of CFA Institute, the global association of investment professionals that sets the standard for professional excellence and credentials. Putting Investors First Month is part of the Future of Finance project, a long-term global effort to shape a trustworthy, forward-thinking financial industry that better serves society. For more information, visit http://www.cfainstitute.org/learning/future/getinvolved.

CFA Institute
CFA Institute is the global association of investment professionals that sets the standard for professional excellence and credentials. The organization is a champion for ethical behavior in investment markets and a respected source of knowledge in the global financial community. The end goal is to create an environment where investors’ interests come first, markets function at their best, and economies grow. CFA Institute has more than 130,000 members, including 123,000 CFA charterholders, in 147 countries and territories and 144 member societies in 68 countries. For more information, visit
http://www.cfainstitute.org.

CFA Institute Mission
To lead the investment profession globally by promoting the highest standards of ethics, education, and professional excellence for the ultimate benefit of society.

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Jim Fleming, CFA - President

Bill McGinnis, CFA - Meeting Facilitator