Kathryn Swain | President and CEO of LGBTQinvest

Please introduce yourself. What do you do? Why? What do you want people to know about you? 

For over 40 years Kathryn Swain, President and CEO of LGBTQinvest, held a secret from her friends, family and colleagues. A secret so deep it would likely end her career, her marriage and many of those friendships. The well-known former professional athlete, trader and money manager’s truth was that she was originally known as “Chris”. Kathryn was transgender.
Having spent years as a superstar in the financial services industry handling some of the biggest relationships for firms like Schwab, Merrill Lynch and Goldman Sachs, she counted among her clients royal and presidential families, Swiss bankers, Fortune 500 CEOs and professional sports franchise owners. They all relied on Kathryn’s expertise regarding trading and investing in the securities markets. Sadly, within months of coming out, she was fired twice and was for the first time in her career without a job.
Considering her next steps, and with few firms employing LGBTQIA+ folks in key positions of leadership, she resolved to create that firm herself and LGBTQinvest was born. Setting up shop near West Hollywood, far from the traditional Wall Street structure, she wanted a firm that would not only champion LGBTQIA+ career development but would also create a “collective equity” of investment in companies that support and celebrate inclusion and diversity for the community.

What qualities make you different and unique from everyone else in the industry?

Kathryn Swain is one of the very first transgender CEO’s of a Registered Investment Advisor, ever. Growing up in the tiny, windswept village of Mendocino on the north coast of Northern California, she was raised by a single Hispanic mother and worked in the family’s Mexican restaurant in nearby Fort Bragg. Making her way to the University of Maryland to pursue a career on Capitol Hill, she found the partisan “red vs blue” world of DC frustrating. Laughing, she says she chose, “… a much less cutthroat career path…”, Wall Street. She instantly fell in love with the excitement of trading and would light up when discussing what she calls “… the dynamic crossroads of economics, psychology and the mob” that is the market. Kathryn would devote the next 30 years of her life to understanding, interpreting and investing in the stock market for herself and others.
She is currently the host of “Kathryn & Company” on Power 98.5 Satellite Radio and was recently featured on Audacy Network’s Channel Q syndicated radio show, “The Morning Beat with AJ Gibson and Mikalah Gordon” as a “Money Mondays” financial expert.

Describe THAT moment when you realized you’re doing what you were born to do.

Out of the industry and in the midst of transition, Kathryn began to finally consider her own retirement. Much in the same way that she had found other LGBTQIA+ professionals, her doctor and voice coach were both trans, she now set her sights on finding an investment advisor that could understand the unique financial planning needs of a transgender person. Issues like affording gender affirming care, socially responsible investing and a culture of diversity and inclusion were all important.
With as many as two million Americans identifying as transgender (including a further 30 million LGBTQIA+) she assumed there would be many firms focused on the investing needs of the community. Unfortunately, she found almost no one. If seeking a gay friendly advisor in a city like Los Angeles was this difficult, how would other gay or queer people be served in less friendly LGBTQIA+ settings?
She began to think of her queer friends and family who were even less comfortable in financial settings. How would they be able to get help with mortgages, business loans, car loans, credit cards and even brokerage accounts? Considering the data, she found the LGBTQIA+ community was routinely behind the rest of the population in virtually every financial health metric. It was this moment that Kathryn knew what needed to be done, she would champion the financial needs of her community. This would be the mission of LGBTQinvest.

What’s been the biggest challenge you’ve had to go through and how did you grow through it?

Balancing a demanding career in trading while simultaneously training as an elite athlete was never easy. To survive the intense work and training schedule while managing the depression that comes with gender dysphoria, Kathryn would need to stay focused. Early in her career she laid out two significant goals for herself. One, to join Goldman Sachs as an executive and two, to qualify for the 2000 Olympic trials. Her days would regularly begin at 4am on Schwab’s 16th floor equity & options trading desk in San Francisco’s financial district. Afternoons were spent in Golden Gate Park logging 70 mile training weeks. Kathryn found that filling her days with an exceptionally intense schedule was one way she could fight the degrading effects of gender dysphoria. When her running career finally ended and the depression once again setting in, she would fill the void with 80 hour workweeks. This drive pushed to become one of the top advisors in Northern California, attracting hundreds of millions of investor dollars to her firms.

Who are the TOP 3 people you’d want to meet that could elevate your career or business?  Why these specific individuals?

Former legendary hedge fund manager and founder of RealVision TV, Raoul Pal. Social Media influencer, savvy business woman and transgender icon, Gigi Gorgeous. Legendary producer of Jeopardy and Who Wants To Be A Millionaire, half of the Men-in-Blazers duo, and Embassy Row Studios CEO, Michael Davies.

Drop your social media links..

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC4_rEl9756PrPClk_Ek9_Eg

Reddit, Twitter: @kathrynkswswain

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kathrynkswain/



Staff Writer
Staff Writerhttps://thelanote.com
The LA Note and our team of talent networkers, writers, social media managers, and management are excited to present you with unique stories of amazing individuals following their dreams.


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