Thasunda Brown Duckett
Thasunda Brown Duckett arrives at the 2018 EBONY Power 100 Gala at the Beverly Hilton, in Beverly Hills, Calif, 30 Nov 2018 (Willy Sanjuan/Invision/AP/Shutterstock)

Thasunda Brown Duckett Named CEO of TIAA; Second Black Woman Recently Named to Lead Fortune 500 Company

TIAA — Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association of America — has announced that Thasunda Brown Duckett will become the company’s new CEO, succeeding Roger W. Ferguson Jr. who announced in November 2020 his plans to retire. With her appointment, Duckett will join newly named Walgreen’s CEO Rosalind Brewer as one of only two Black women heading Fortune 500 companies. TIAA ranked No. 9 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2020.

Duckett will join TIAA on May 1 from JPMorgan Chase, where she was CEO of Chase Consumer Banking, leading a “banking network with more than $600 billion in deposits, 4,900 branches and over 40,000 employees.” In that role, “she undertook Chase’s first major branch expansion in 10 years to add 400 new branches in 20 new markets over five years” — a strategy that is said to have reflected “her commitment to improving the lives of individual customers and local communities by providing more jobs, neighborhood resources and access to financial services.”

In announcing her appointment, TIAA celebrated her successful career and also paid special attention to Duckett’s longtime support of diversity and inclusion efforts.

“Ms. Duckett has been a tireless and purpose-driven champion for change,” TIAA said in a press release announcing her appointment. “She was the executive sponsor of JPMorgan Chase’s Advancing Black Pathways program, an initiative aimed at helping Black Americans close historical achievement gaps in wealth creation, educational outcomes and career success. Ms. Duckett also sat on the steering committee for the bank’s Women on the Move initiative to help women advance their career and business opportunities, and she is committed to financial education for women, who account for a significant portion of the retirement investments TIAA stewards. Most recently, Ms. Duckett led Chase’s accelerated focus on communities disproportionately affected by COVID-19 and was the executive sponsor of the bank’s Fellowship Initiative, which offers young men of color academic and social support to help them achieve personal and professional success.”

Justin Baer of The Wall Street Journal wrote that Duckett “is leaving consumer-banking for a part of the financial world that is confronting many of the same challenges, albeit at a different stage. Technology and evolving customer tastes have driven down the costs of investing, squeezing money managers’ margins and forcing firms to consider mergers that give them the scale to compete.”

“Thasunda is widely recognized as an exceptionally dynamic and inspirational leader,” said Ronald L. Thompson, Chairman of the TIAA Board of Trustees. “She brings invaluable experience leading and growing large, complex businesses, setting and executing strategy, improving client experience and attracting and developing talent. Equally important, she is deeply mission-oriented, with values that reflect those of TIAA, including a passion for financial inclusion and empowerment.”

Following the announcement, Duckett reflected on her past and how it will guide her future, issuing a statement saying “I often think about the day my father asked me to help him plan his retirement, and I had to tell him, ‘Dad, your pension is not enough. Now, thanks to his work and sacrifices and the support of many others who have guided me throughout my life and career, I am blessed to join TIAA, which has paid out over $500 billion of lifetime income and other benefits since its founding in 1918. I am extraordinarily grateful for the opportunity to lead a company that has helped millions of people retire with ‘enough’ to live in dignity and excited about the opportunity to help TIAA chart its next 100 years.”

 

Related: For more recent diversity and inclusion news, click here.

 

Latest News

LGBTQ protection in schools

US Education Department Issues Statement Confirming Title IX Protects LGBTQ Students Against Discrimination

Following an executive order from President Joe Biden directing federal agencies to defend LGBTQ students against discrimination, the Education Department has issued an official statement saying that Title IX does indeed ensure equal protection for LGBTQ students under federal law. Jo Yurcaba of NBC News reported that the Department of…

Texas Governor Greg Abbott

Texas Governor Approves Bill Banning Discussions of Race and Racism Within State’s Schools

Texas lawmakers continue to astound with the number of racist, transphobic laws they are willing to try to write into law.  In the last few months alone, we’ve seen Texas lawmakers draft legislation that would penalize parents who support and help their transgender children access gender-affirming care with jail time…

Georgia Power, Georgia Power Foundation Invested More Than $20 Million To Help Meet Community Challenges in 2020

Originally published at southerncompany.com. Southern Company ranked No. 20 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2021.   Georgia Power and the Georgia Power Foundation today released their annual Citizenship Report highlighting how the company, its employees and retirees gave back to Georgia communities last year, helping to build…

Toyota Financial Services Issues New Asset-Backed Green Bond, Highlighting Toyota’s Ongoing Commitment to Sustainability

Originally published at pressroom.toyota.com. Toyota Motor North America ranked No. 7 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2021.   Toyota Financial Services (TFS) issued its latest Asset-Backed Green Bond, reinforcing the company’s longstanding commitment to the sale of environmentally friendly vehicles. Net proceeds from the $1.6…

ADP Recognized as a Customers’ Choice in 2021 Gartner Peer Insights ‘Voice of the Customer’

Originally published at mediacenter.adp.com. ADP ranked No. 8 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2021.   Industry analyst firm Gartner recognized ADP as a Customers’ Choice with category distinctions in Midsize Enterprises and North America in its 2021 Gartner Peer Insights ‘Voice of the Customer’: Cloud HCM Suites…

Cigna building

Cigna and New York Life Expand Eligibility for ‘Brave of Heart Fund’ Grants Supporting Families of Healthcare Workers Who Lost Their Lives in the Fight Against COVID-19

Originally published at cigna.com. Cigna ranked No. 33 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2021.   On June 17, the foundations of New York Life and Cigna announced that the Brave of Heart Fund, which provides monetary grants to the families of heroic health care workers…