Liesel, who was the Co-Founder and Principal of Blue Haven Initiative, was one of the pioneers in creating a U.S. family office with impact investing as its mission and focus. Despite the advice of some early advisors, Liesel had restructured a traditional investment portfolio she inherited to focus on social and environmental impact as well as financial returns. This involved divesting from some companies in her portfolio whose business practices weren’t aligned with her values.
Liesel shared how her portfolio was structured at that time and how she and her husband, Ian Simmons, used their wealth for competitive returns and positive social and environmental change. As an insightful and engaged investor, Liesel also discussed opportunities and realities across asset classes including philanthropy, catalytic capital, public and private equities, and direct investments in start-up companies. She also shared how she had been an active supporter to enable a larger range of products to come to the market.
The session was interactive and was relevant for members at all stages of their impact journey or level of wealth.